/ Accreditation /Press Release
/ Accreditation /Press Release
Press Release

Aaron KWOK Fu-shing Appointed HKIFF43 Ambassador

4 May 2018 (Hong Kong and Cannes) – Renowned actor, singer and “King of Dance” Aaron KWOK Fu-shing has been appointed Festival Ambassador of the 43rd Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF43), which will open in mid-March next year.

 

"We are honored that Mr. KWOK has accepted our invitation to be HKIFF43 Ambassador," said Roger GARCIA, Executive Director of Hong Kong International Film Festival Society. "Mr. KWOK’s impressive career in film, music and the entertainment industry has made him a household name in Asia.  He received the Best Actor award at Hong Kong Film Awards for the chilling thriller Port of Call, which was the closing film of HKIFF39 in 2015. He has twice won Best Leading Actor in the Golden Horse Awards for action-crime film Divergence (2005) and the moving father-and-son drama After This Our Exile (2006). His keen interest in nurturing young directors and artists makes him the ideal choice to help promote Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF) to the world," GARCIA said.

 

"I am delighted to be HKIFF43 Ambassador to promote appreciation of film culture," said Aaron KWOK. "Every year, HKIFF attracts movie-goers and entertainment industry professionals around the world; I strongly encourage people to take part in this celebrated film event."  

 

List of Past Festival Ambassadors:

HKIFF38-42 (2014-2018): Louis KOO Tin-lok
HKIFF35-37 (2011-2013): Miriam YEUNG Chin-wah
HKIFF33 (2009): Karen MOK
HKIFF32 (2008): Sammi CHENG Sau-man
HKIFF29-30 (2005-2006): Andy LAU Tak-wah 
HKIFF27 (2003): SHINE

04/05/2018

HKIFF42 Comes to a Fruitful Conclusion - Film Screenings Continue in Cine Fan and Summer IFF

HKIFF42 Comes to a Fruitful Conclusion - Film Screenings Continue in Cine Fan and Summer IFF

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival comes to a fruitful conclusion today, after screening over 230 titles from 60 countries and regions in 18 days. By popular demand, additional screenings of some be-loved films will continue to take place on 6-7 April. Afterwards, audiences nevertheless can continue to enjoy a strong selection of films in the Cine Fan April/May programmes and the Summer International Film Festival (SummerIFF) which will run from 14 August. The 43rd Hong Kong International Film Festival will be held from 18 March 2019.

 

HKIFF42 closes with the world premiere of What a Wonderful Family! 3: My Wife, My Life, the latest episode of the acclaimed comedy series by Japanese master YAMADA Yoji. In this third instalment, Yamada playfully exposes the changing values and behavior within contemporary Japanese society. The comedy brings a delightful conclusion to this year’s Festival. 

 

Werner HERZOG, in his first visit to HKIFF42, stirred up a fever among fans, who were captivated by his charismatic talks and masterpieces. Cine Fan Apr/May programmes will continue this frenzy, presenting some of his most acclaimed works, including Fitzcarraldo (1982), with which he won the Best Director Award at Cannes, and its making of, Burden of Dreams (1982); his award-winning documentaries -- Where the Green Ants Dream (1984), Little Dieter Needs to Fly (1997), and Grizzly Man (2005); Oscar nominee Encounters at the End of the World (2007); as well as Cobra Verde, his last collaboration with Klaus Kinski. Dracula fans will be exceptionally delighted to watch three restored classics by F.W. MURNAU, HERZOG and Francis Ford COPPOLA in one go.

 

Cinephiles embracing films from distinguished female directors will be excited by the “Jane Campion, the Authentic Feminist” programme in Cine Fan. The first and only female filmmaker ever to have won a Cannes Palme d’Or with The Piano (1993), CAMPION is honored in a selection of seven of her acclaimed films, including An Angel at My Table (1990), the Venice Grand Special Jury Prize winner; The Portrait of a Lady (1996) starring Nicole Kidman; Holy Smoke (1999) featuring Kate Winslet; her latest crime mystery series Top of the Lake (2017), and her pre-Sweetie (1989) debut Two Friends (1986), which is shown in Hong Kong for the very first time. 

 

A full list of the Cine Fan programmes is available at http://cinefan.com.hk/. Tickets are now on sale in all URBTIX outlets. Details of SummerIFF will be announced later.

05/04/2018

HKIFF42 Award Ceremony honors filmmakers with five awards Professional jurors and nominees attend the ceremony

HKIFF42 Award Ceremony honors filmmakers with five awards Professional jurors and nominees attend the ceremony

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF42) Award ceremony, held at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, announced the winning films in five award categories, including: three events under the Firebird Award Competition——“International Short Film Competition” sponsored by JIA SCREEN, the “Documentary Competition” and the “Young Cinema Competition”“FIPRESCI Prize” and “Audience Choice Award” as well.

 

In addition, each competition was judged by an independent jury, including renowned Japanese director Mr. SUWA Nobuhiro; Iranian filmmaker Mani HAGHGHI; Kent JONES, Artistic Director of The New York International Film Festival; Cecilia YIP, two-time winner of the Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actress; Indian political documentarian Anand PATWARDHAN; celebrated Hong Kong photographer, director, producer and cinematographer Peter YUNG; critic of Asian performing arts Ken SMITH; Nuno RODRIGUES, a co-founder and the artistic director of the Portuguese film festival Curtas Vila do Conde; TSENG Wei-Chen, illustrious film critic and scriptwriter; local director Adam WONG, winner of the Hong Kong Film Award for Best New Director (see Appendix for complete list of jurors). The winner of the “Audience Choice Award” in the 42nd HKIFF was voted by audiences online.

The Young Cinema Competition seeks to encourage young filmmakers to explore the potential of the cinema as a powerful medium of our times. Eight films from a range of countries, including South Korea, Germany, Italy, France, Switzerland, Austria, Greece, China and Japan competed for the awards. The coveted Firebird Award was given to Girls Always Happy, directed by YANG Mingming from China. The jurors praised “A film that explores similar territory from a very different angle, that builds in richness and complexity and humour and insight as it goes, a film that is tough and tender, all at once, and endlessly rich and surprising.” Daughter of Mine directed by Laura BISPURI won the Jury Prize, “A film that sings with the rhythms and the wonders of the natural world” as commented by the jurors.

 

Filmmakers around the world embrace the documentary genre to help audiences reflect on aspects of real life conflicts and to address social issues. The Documentary Competition recognizes filmmakers for their devotion and contributions to creating documentaries that inspire audiences. The jury unanimously awards the Firebird Award to Of Love & Law directed by TODA Hikaru: “Through solid activist filmmaking, TODA captures the singular quirks of the Japanese legal system while emphasizing the need for diverse expression in any conformist society” The Jury Prize was awarded to The Distant Barking of Dogs directed by Simon Lereng WILMONT from Denmark. The jurors cited that the “Director delivers a palpable pacifist message in the figure of the boy’s grandmother, who avoids taking sides but remains an unmovable object in the path of war.” Mama directed by JIN Xingzheng from China received Special Mention. The jurors spoke highly of its creativity: “Jin Xingzheng’s account of an octogenarian mother’s care for her violent, mentally ill son unfolds as an extreme case of traditional family values that are fading in the age of modernity”

 

The short film is a unique genre for filmmakers to express their creativity and to experiment with the possibilities of expression in a limited timeframe. This year, the Short Film competition is sponsored by web-based JIA SCREEN which was founded by renowned director JIA Zhangke, who is committed to the development of the short film genre. The Short Film Competition Firebird Award winner was selected from 19 entries this year. The jurors praised the winning film Wicked Girl by Ayce KARTAL from Turkey as “a moving poem of a little girl's memory, beautiful yet painful” The Burden directed by Niki Lindroth VON BAHR from Sweden was awarded the Jury Prize. The jurors recognized this film as “A musical comedy which is played by anorexic animals and is against the consumption society, also metaphorizes our world as a galactic zoo on its way to perdition”.

 

FIPRESCI is an association of national organizations of professional film critics and film journalists from around the world. The FIPRESCI Prize recognizes enterprising filmmakers and promotes young talent in Asian cinema. The award this year went to Girls Always Happy directed by YANG Mingming “Through biting dialogues and playing the heroine herself, the director presents a vivid picture of urban values and culture in modern China, without overstating nor sugar-coating her main characters' flaws, and shows a self-assurance of tone that is remarkable for a first feature” as complimented by the jurors.

 

The popular “Audience Choice Award” is voted by audiences as in previous years, by an enthusiastic number of voters. An Elephant Sitting Still, directed by HU Bo, obtained the highest voting score from the audience, and won the debut “Audience Choice Award”.  An audience member who voted for it was selected from the lucky draw and won the 2019 Cine Fan Patron Privilege prize worth HK$10,000; another winner from the all the participants was selected and won the one Acer laptop NITRO5 which worth at HKD8,998.

02/04/2018

TSAI Ming-Liang and LEE Kang-Sheng kick off the Hong Kong Premiere of VR film, The Deserted

TSAI Ming-Liang and LEE Kang-Sheng kick off the Hong Kong Premiere of VR film, The Deserted

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival coordinates with HTC VIVE, the Academy of Film of Hong Kong Baptist University and ZOTAC to showcase the Hong Kong premiere of Tsai Ming-Liang’s The DesertedHTC’s first virtual reality (VR) Chinese language film. The guests who attend the premiere including Golden Horse Award Best Director Tsai Ming-Liang; Golden Horse Award Best Leading Actor LEE Kang-Sheng; Vice President of HTC Virtual Reality Content Center  Szuming LIU; Eva MAN, Director of Academy of Film, Hong Kong Baptist University; MAN Shu Sum, Associate Director of Academy of Film, Hong Kong Baptist University; Ernest SIU, Assistant Global Marketing & PR Manager of ZOTAC; Art Director of HKIFF, Li Cheuk-to; The lead singer of The Deserted’s ending song and senior artist Rebecca PAN; Hong Kong director Ann HUI and Steve YUEN; the jury of HKIFF Firebird Award, Cecilia YIP; Hong Kong actress Karena LAM; musician Gaybird, etc. HKIFF is pleased to present 15 sessions of The Deserted from 31 March to 2 April at the Communication and Visual Arts Building of Hong Kong Baptist University. Tickets were sold out quickly after going on sale, showing the enthusiasm of Hong Kong audience on this VR film.

 

Winner of the Golden Lion Award at the Venice Film Festival with Vive L’amour (1994), TSAI Ming-Liang has established himself as one of contemporary cinema’s most accomplished auteurs. In addition to bringing films into the art world, The Deserted which produced by HTC and nominated to VR session in Venice Film Festival, depends on the HTC VIVE equipment collaborating with the world's first TMS (theatre management system) to integrate images and arts. The Desertedhis debut VR work, is an attempt to break the established dichotomy of traditional cinema, and create an interactive film experience that blurs the lines between reality and creative expression.  

 

The work is an elliptical tale of love, death and memory, starring LEE Kang-Sheng as a man recuperating from an illness in the mountains. Unable to communicate with his late mother or the female ghost next door, his only companion is a lone fish who swims with him in the bathtub. The Deserted offers a dreamlike 3D experience, which immerses viewers in the construction of the scenes, and the characters’ personal journeys.  

 

31/03/2018

Two Promising Chinese Directors Showcase their Creative Talents at The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival

Two Promising Chinese Directors Showcase their Creative Talents at The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival

With the mission of championing young and promising talents, the 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival is pleased to present “Chinese Cinema Now”, introducing four up-and-coming Chinese directors and their notable works to local audiences. Among them are Sunshine that Can Move Mountains and Looking for Lucky, both winners of the inaugural Early Bird New Directors Film Fund of the Hong Kong International Film Festival. 

 

Tibetan director WANG Qiang’s winner at the Shanghai International Film Festival, Sunshine that Can Move Mountains is a gratifying and heart-warming tale about a young Tibetan monk who faces the dilemma between religious faith and pure love. Combining spiritual musings and nature’s beauty, the film “is an ode to the benevolence of humanity and the beauty of our nature, as well as a poetry to the people devoted to the quest of spirituality,” according to the director.  

 

JIANG Jiachen’s feature debut, Looking for Lucky is a black comedy inspired by real-life characters in his hometown of Shenyang. It tells a tale of a young guy desperately searching for a missing dog in order to secure a tutorship job. Capturing the lively conversations in local dialect and rhythms of real life, JIANG hopes the film “can inspire contemplation of reality through absurdness, and reflect on the conceivable illness in modern society through ordinary people and daily lives.”

 

Both directors will come to Hong Kong and meet the audience. WANG will attend the post-screening talks on 30 March at 9:30pm at Festival Grand Cinema and 1 April at 7:30pm at Kornhill Cinema; while JIANG will attend the post-screening talks on 2 April at 9:30pm at Festival Grand Cinema and 4 April at 7:30pm at Kornhill Cinema. 

26/03/2018

KAGAWA Kyoko Unable to Attend HKIFF due to Accidental Injury

KAGAWA Kyoko, the legendary Japanese actress of the MIZOGUCHI Kenji masterpiece A Story from Chikamatsu, is unable to attend the 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival as originally planned. Due to a recent accidental injury, she has to cancel her trip to Hong Kong and is therefore unable to meet the audience face to face on 25 March.   

 

KAGAWA Kyoko, in a hand-written letter, shares with Hong Kong fans her working experience with MIZOGUCHI Kenji in A Story from Chikamatsu. She apologizes for not being able to meet the Hong Kong audience, and sincerely wishes that they would enjoy watching the classic which has been newly restored to its full glory. 

 

Face to Face with KAGAWA Kyoko, originally scheduled on 25 March after the screening of A Story from Chikamatsu, will be replaced by a post-screening talk by critic Kiki FUNG.

 

The Hong Kong International Film Festival Society sincerely wishes KAGAWA Kyoko a speedy recovery, and looks forward to the opportunity of receiving her in the near future.   

 

21/03/2018

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival Kicks Off with International Premiere of Omotenashi and Asian Premiere of Xiao Mei

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival Kicks Off with International Premiere of Omotenashi and Asian Premiere of Xiao Mei

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF42) opened tonight at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, presenting two opening films, namely the international premiere of Omotenashi, a co-production from Japan and Taiwan, and the Asian premiere of Xiao Mei.

 

Stellar guests officiated at the opening ceremony include Bernard CHAN, the Under Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development; director Jay CHERN, actress TANAKA Rena and actor WANG Po-Chieh from Omotenashi; director Maren HWANG, actor CHEN Yi-Wen and actress JAO Cincin from Xiao Mei; Festival Ambassador Louis KOO; and German master filmmaker Werner HERZOG. Local celebrities including Sing LAM, Neo YAU, Hedwig TAM, WONG Yat Ho, Koyi MAK, Crystal CHEUNG and CHEN Zhifa were also present to kick off the 18-day festival.

Wilfred WONG, Chairman of the Hong Kong International Film Festival Society (HKIFFS), said, "This year's film festival continues our mission of promoting the latest films and classic masterpieces. We’re proud to showcase the international premiere of Omotenashi, and the Asian premiere of Xiao Mei, which was also selected in the Panorama Section of the Berlin Film Festival. We also have celebrated actress Brigitte LIN Ching-Hsia as this year’s “Filmmaker in Focus”, in which 14 of her classics will be showcased, allowing fans to revisit her illustrious film career.”

 

WONG added that, thanks to the full support of HTC VIVE, ZOTAC and the Academy of Film of Hong Kong Baptist University, the festival is bringing audiences HTC's first virtual reality Chinese language film - The Deserted, directed by Taiwanese master TSAI Ming-Liang. Both the director and the Best Leading Actor of Golden Horse Awards LEE Kang-Sheng will visit Hong Kong again to lead the fans into the world of virtual reality. In addition, renowned American independent filmmaker Sean BAKER, and Japanese master documentarian HARA Kazuo will also meet the Hong Kong audience and share their creative insights.

 

At the opening ceremony, five-time HKIFF ambassador Louis KOO said, “This year’s promotional trailer is based on the theme of ‘telling stories’, implying that every film and every filmgoer has a story to tell. In Your Dreams, the movie that was selected in the Hong Kong Panorama Section is a good example of telling a good story. Apart from the breakthrough theme, the script has a nuanced portrayal of each character, allowing the audience to regain their lost youth. I am sure that everyone will be moved by this film."

 

The opening film, Omotenashi, depicts how three young people find their true selves in a ryokan and learn to appreciate different cultures as well as the value of things old and new. Another opening film, Xiao Mei, is a whodunit jam-packed with noir and suspense, reflecting the loneliness of the city through the sudden disappearance of a young girl.

 

HKIFF42 will be held from March 19 to April 5, 2018, with over 230 titles from 60 countries and regions, 63 of which are world, international or Asian premieres. Details of the programme can be found at www.hkiff.org.hk. Tickets for the public can be purchased online and at URBTIX outlets.

19/03/2018

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival Announces Additional Screenings

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival Announces Additional Screenings

In response to the overwhelming requests for tickets, the 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF42) announced additional screenings for selected hot picks.

  • Omotenashi, the HKIFF42 Opening Film directed by young Taiwanese director Jay CHERN and featuring TANAKA Rena and WANG Po-Chieh: 7 April, 7:00pm at The Metroplex 
  • Two controversial documentaries by outlaw Japanese filmmaker HARA Kazuo, including:
  • The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On, 6 April, 9:45pm at The Grand Cinema
  • Extreme Private Eros: Love Song 1974: 7 April, 5:00pm at The Metroplex
  • Two exceptional documentaries:
  • Ex Libris – The New York Public Library, winner of
    FIPRESCI Prize at Venice Film Festival: 7 April, 7:30pm at HK Arts Centre Cinema
  • Dragonfly Eyes, winner of FIPRESCI Prize at Locarno International Film Festival: 6 April, 8:00pm at The Grand Cinema
  • Of Love & Law, winner of Grand Prize, “Japanese Cinema Splash” at Tokyo International Film Festival: 7 April, 3:00pm at The Metroplex
  • And a satirical black comedy Pity: 7 April, 9:00pm at The Metroplex

 

In addition, for the sold-out screening of Werner HERZOG’s masterpiece Fitzcarraldo, which earned him the Best Director Award at Cannes, a limited number of tickets will be released for sale. More cinephiles will have the opportunity to meet the acclaimed filmmaker in person. The screening is on 22 Mar, 7:30pm at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

 

Tickets for the additional screenings will be available from 15 March (Thu) onwards and can be booked online at www.hkiff.org.hk and all URBTIX and HK Ticketing outlets.

 

Full list of additional screenings (in chronological order)

Film Title

Date

Time

Venue

Dragonfly Eyes

6 April

8:00pm

The Grand Cinema

The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On

6 April

9:45pm

The Grand Cinema

Of Love & Law

7 April

3:00pm

The Metroplex

Extreme Private Eros: Love Song 1974

7 April

5:00pm

The Metroplex

Omotenashi

7 April

7:00pm

The Metroplex

Ex Libris – The New York Public Library

7 April

7:30pm

HK Arts Centre Cinema

Pity

7 April

9:00pm

The Metroplex

 

13/03/2018

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival Presents "French Night" Custody director Xavier LEGRAND in attendance

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival Presents "French Night" Custody director Xavier LEGRAND in attendance

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF42) is pleased to present "French Night" on 21 March 2018 with Custody, co-presented by the Consulate General of France in Hong Kong & Macau and UniFrance. Venice Best Director winner Xavier LEGRAND will attend the screenings and meet the Hong Kong audience.

 

Following his award-winning short film Just Before Losing Everything (2013), LEGRAND’s feature debut Custody delves deeper into the agonizing issue of family abuse and raises it as a harrowing, complex nightmare. Adopting a raw social realist approach, LEGRAND tells the tale of a broken marriage facing a bitter custody battle, in which the son is held hostage to the escalating conflict between his parents. The film won him the Best Director Award and the “Lion of the Future” Award for best debut at the Venice Film Festival in 2017. LEGRAND will meet the audience following the two screenings. 

 

Other equally impressive French films with diversified themes and styles can be found in this year's festival. Films contemplating history include Napalm, in which Claude LANZMANN dips into his own memories for a long lost romance with a North Korean nurse, and The Guardians, in which Xavier BEAUVOIS unfolds an intricate drama in the stunning French countryside set against the upheaval of World War I. Films reflecting reality include The Workshop, where Palme d’Or winner Laurent CANTET explores the dynamics and compelling tensions between an author and students in a summer writing workshop, and A Season in France, where Cannes awarded director Mahamat-Saleh HAROUN reveals the bitter humiliation of African refugees wrestling to make a living in a foreign country. In The Lion Sleeps Tonight, Japanese director SUWA Nobuhiro pays tribute to the French New Wave and legendary actor Jean-Pierre Léaud; master Bruno DUMONT breaks away from DREYER and BRESSON in Jeannette, the Childhood of Joan of Arc, pioneering a new perspective and style in bringing the younger girl and her visions to life.           

 

A full list of French cinema and other films in the HKIFF selections is available at www.hkiff.org.hk.

 

12/03/2018

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival Presents Canadian Film Ava Director Sadaf FOROUGHI to Meet the Audience

The 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival Presents Canadian Film Ava Director Sadaf FOROUGHI to Meet the Audience

Following the enthusiastic response to Canadian Film Day last year, the 42nd Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF42) is pleased to present a new Canadian film Ava, with the support of the Consulate General of Canada in Hong Kong & Macao. Director Sadaf FOROUGHI will meet the audience at the screenings.

 

Iranian-Canadian filmmaker Sadaf FOROUGHI establishes herself as a cinematic force with her insightful feature debut Ava, which depicts an Iranian teenager who rebels against her conservative family and claustrophobic society to fight for freedom and independence. With arresting visual compositions, FOROUGHI offers a searing social critique while presenting a strong, richly developed female character. The director will share her experience in a meet-the-audience session after the screenings on 20 and 22 March.

 

The diversity and creativity of Canadian directors are also demonstrated in the programme’s two documentaries. Silas, directed by Anjali NAYAR and Hawa ESSUMAN, with Hollywood superstar Leonardo DICAPRIO as the Executive Producer, is a vivid and profound portrait of Silas SIAKOR, the Liberian crusader who has dedicated his life to fight against environmental destruction and political corruption. A Skin So Soft, directed by the uncompromising auteur Denis CÔTÉ, crafts a multifaceted portrait of six modern gladiators building up their physical brawn through extreme diets, training regimens and stamina.

 

Coincidentally, everyday life in Afghanistan has also inspired two impressive Canadian co-productions. A dream of kite flying is a metaphor for freedom against oppression and seismic political shifts in Black Kite by Afghan director Tarique QAYUMI. The Breadwinner, a beautiful animation by Academy Awards nominee, Irish director Nora TWOMEY, and executive produced by Hollywood leading lady Angelina JOLIE, draws the audience into a parable of female empowerment through the extraordinary experience of a courageous Afghan girl.    

 

The full programme of HKIFF is available at www.hkiff.org.hk.

 

08/03/2018

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