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Beijing International Film Festival Ends in Success

2011-04-29 15:26:22        Chinese Films

Officials attend the last press conference of the first Beijing International Film Festival.

Chinese film authorities call the inaugural Beijing International Film Festival (BJIFF) a great success at a press conference ahead of the closing ceremony on Thursday night.

The grand event is hailed by all chairpersons of international film festivals from various countries who hold great prospects for oriental film capital and the Chinese film industry.

The film festival has gotten worldwide attention at its birth, attracting famous filmmakers like Darren Aronofsky and Rob Minkoff. James Cameron, who cannot make it on site due to scheduling problems sent his wishes at the event's tail end, as revealed from the press conference.

Lauded as a platform for communications and transactions, the festival has witnessed ten contracts that were signed during the Beijing film marketing event, bringing the total volume to a record high 2.79 billion yuan in Chinese film festivals.
Six out of the ten signed projects are co-productions, including "Flying Tiger Heroes," "Rat Road," and "Looper," all richly-tinged with Chinese style content, fulfilling the film's economic and cultural goals. Today's co-productions will be the blockbusters of tomorrow.

Deputy director of SARFT, La Peikang, vice secretary of BJIFF, remarked that "co-productions will be an important approach to make Chinese films go international."

Zhao Dongming, executive director of BJIFF, contributed to the success of the festival's right orientation and all-powerful resources in the capital city.

He noted the inaugural BJIFF differentiates itself from other film festivals by underplaying competition.

Marco Muller, president of Venice Film Festival, spoke highly of the feature, saying it shows a principle of film festivals-pursuing a new philosophy of film industry development, to experiment, to learn from other film festivals without following their paths.

Zhao was grateful for directors and film festival chairpersons who addressed the forums with great honesty and professionalism. He said the high-end forum on the most prevalent issues by most influential filmmakers were constructive, which make sense to the world.

The film gala screened 160 films from at home and abroad in 20 select cinemas during the six-day Beijing Film Panorama, with the majority being well-received. The film festival award winners were "Black Swan" and "The Social Network" oand other movies from Russia and South Korea.

Though access to film screenings were limited, fans were seen travelling from neighboring cities to grab tickets.
During the press conference, director Zhao elaborated on the difficult process of putting together a grand film gala in Beijing starting from scratch.

The festival's organizing committee had pulled all the strings to build connections since it was set up last October and did much to bring shortlisted films to Beijing for screenings. Experts from censorship organizations and film academies had joined in the selections.

BJIFF differentiates itself from others by removing competition units however whether this feature will last remains to be seen.

"We may consider setting up branding projects in the follow-up festival." said Pang Wei, deputy director of SARFT Beijing branch and office of BJIFF.

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