Beijing Film Festival opens with aim to raise profile | Inquirer Entertainment

Beijing Film Festival opens with aim to raise profile

/ 05:06 AM April 17, 2015

Luc Besson

French director Luc Besson arrives for the grand opening of the 5th annual Beijing International Film Festival in Beijing, Thursday, April 16, 2015. Besson is head of the film festivals jury. AP

BEIJING — The fifth Beijing International Festival opened Thursday in China’s capital city, where the local government and national film authorities are hoping to raise the event’s profile by hiring a veteran European festival chief.

The festival, which continues through April 23, is overseen by Marco Mueller, a Swiss-Italian who has produced several films including the Oscar-winning 2001 Bosnian film “No Man’s Land.”


Luc Besson leads the festival jury and Arnold Schwarzenegger is scheduled to speak.


Fifteen films will compete for the 10 Temple of Heaven Awards, including best feature film and best director. They include South Korean entry “The Whistleblower,” U.S. movie “Experimenter,” Indian film “Fig Fruit and the Wasps,” and two Chinese films, “Wolf Totem” and “The Taking of Tiger Mountain.”

All the non-Chinese nominated films will have their international premieres at the eight-day festival, as opposed to just their Asian premiere or China premiere, as in years past.

Other films being screened include many that haven’t played in mainland theaters, including this year’s Oscar winners “Birdman” and “The Grand Budapest Hotel.”

The festival is different from the grassroots Beijing Independent Film Festival, which showcases films that aren’t approved for release in China and was blocked from taking place last year.

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TAGS: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Beijing, Indie Films, Luc Besson, Movies

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