Posts Tagged ‘nanjing’

Shelly on Film: Fall Festival Report, Part Two: Under Safe Cover, a Fierce Debate

Wednesday, December 7th, 2011

By Shelly Kraicer

Shu Haolun's "No. 89 Shimen Road" won the top prize at CIFF, but wasn't shown on Awards Night.

The Nanjing-based China Independent Film Festival (28 October-1 November 2011), unlike the Beijing Independent Film Festival described previously, benefited from a substantial degree of official and semi-official “cover”. Unlike BIFF, there is a certain amount of practical compromise with official bodies and officially approved cinema: purity isn’t such an issue. Co-sponsors include the Nanjing University School of Journalism and Communication, The Communication University of China (Nanjing) and the RCM Museum of Modern Art. The second day of CIFF includes a forum attended by local propaganda department officials. A sidebar of the festival (nicknamed the “Longbiao Section” for the dragon-headed insignia that appears at the beginning of all officially approved film prints in China) included screenings in a luxurious commercial cinema of several films that that are strictly speaking non-independent (i.e. censor-approved) but are made in a spirit of independence. These films would not appear at BIFF, for example, but might show later in official venues like Beijing’s Broadway Cinematheque MOMA, where approved “arthouse cinema” (i.e. non-commercial) finds a refuge in Beijing.


China Independent Film Festival Reviewed by Electric Sheep

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

Perfect Life (2009, dir. Emily Tang)

In the online film journal Electric Sheep, John Berra reports on the China Independent Film Festival held last October in Nanjing. He describes the festival, now in its seventh year, as a semi-secret state of affairs:

As not every film in the line-up has received the stamp of approval from the Film Bureau of the State Administration for Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), this celebration of Chinese cinema occurs under the political radar, and the lack of the promotion means that many students of Nanjing University are not aware that an important film festival is taking place on their campus until a few banners appear in the days leading up to the event. However, the festival organisers somehow manage to make this ‘invisible’ festival sufficiently noticeable and 2010 screenings were well-attended, leading to a series of productive Q&A sessions with the filmmakers in attendance and valuable networking events.

Berra singles out several films for praise, starting with Perfect Life, directed by Emily Tang and executive produced by Jia Zhangke:


Collective Excitement: Individual Expressions: The 7th China Independent Film Festival

Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010

Opening Ceremony of the 7th China Independent Film Festival in Nanjing (photo courtesy of CIFF)

By Sara Beretta

The 7th China Independent Film Festival (CIFF), which ran from October 21-25, was a five-day affair packed with screenings and forums. Among the changes in this year’s event were a new curatorial team (Dong Bingfeng, Du Qingchun, Wei Xidi) and a new location, Nanjing University. Under the guidance of Zhang Xianmin (Beijing Film Academy Professor, curator, critic, filmmaker, actor, producer and dGenerate consultant), the curators worked with both the Committee (Cao Kai, Chen Yun, Li Li, Zhang Xiamin, Zhou Kai) and the Selection Team (Cai Meng, Liu Jiayin, Wang Liren, Wei Xidi, Wang Xiaolu) put together a stellar program of events and screenings.


China Independent Film Fund Announced

Thursday, October 21st, 2010
By Isabella Tianzi Cai

Zhang Xianmin, manager of the China Independent Film Fund

At the Pusan International Film Festival, Variety reports that a new fund has been set up to help the production of independent films in China.

The fund is managed by Beijing Film Academy Professor (and dGenerate consultant) Zhang Xianmin and financed by an anonymous donor. Zhang revealed the news as he was attending a Pusan festival forum on film funding. He said that a total of $5,000 to $10,000 would be awarded to two independent feature film productions and two documentary productions each year. Submissions for the inaugural funds are open until November 20.

Further details about the film fund will be disclosed during the 7th China Independent Film Festival (also organized by Zhang), which will take place in Nanjing this year from October 21 to 25.

China Independent Film Festival Full Lineup Announced

Friday, October 8th, 2010
By Isabella Tianzi Cai
The Seventh China Independent Film Festival will be held in Nanjing from October 21 to 25. The screenings will be held at Nanjing University as well as other university venues.

There will be a forum for film enthusiasts at the festival called “The Projection of China’s Moving Images and the Chinese Imagination in the Next Ten Years.” A 3-D workshop will be also held there with support from Panasonic.

dGenerate Directors who have films in the festival are Zhao Dayong (The High Life), Zhou Hao (Cop Shop), Cao Fei (China Tracy, Living in RMB City).

Main programs of the festival follow after the break. Further details can be found at the festival website.


Report on the China Independent Film Festival by Chris Berry

Friday, January 15th, 2010
Spring Fever

Spring Fever (dir. Lou Ye)

In the new issue of Senses of Cinema, Chris Berry offers a review of the 6th China Independent Film Festival, held this past October in Nanjing. An excerpt:

By international standards CIFF is a relatively small and under-resourced event. Screenings are scattered across a range of minor colleges, art galleries and museums in Nanjing, a former capital up the Yangtze from Shanghai. This year, approximately 70 experimental films, documentaries and dramatic features, almost all of them low-budget Chinese films, were included. Lou Ye’s Chunfeng Chenzui de Yewan (Spring Fever) won the Best Film award, and Ying Liang’s Hao Mao (Good Cats) and Zhang Jianchi’s Bai Qingting (Take Me to Vietnam) shared the Jury Prize. Anywhere else in the world, such an event would be a minor festival attracting little if any international coverage. But the very particular circumstances of China mean that CIFF can claim to be the most important film festival in the country.

Berry goes on to explain the significance of the festival’s programming, describes the collegiate atmosphere of the community forged by the festival, and identifies trends in Chinese independent filmmaking as reflected in the festival lineup. As a fellow attendee of the festival, I can attest to the festival’s extraordinary atmosphere and a special sense of camaraderie cultivated among its participating artists.

The rest of Berry’s report can be found at Senses of Cinema.

6th Annual China Independent Film Festival Lineup

Friday, October 9th, 2009

The Sixth China Independent Film Festival (CIFF) will be held in Nanjing from October 12-16th, 2009. Here’s a listing of their screening programs. Screenings are held in the Nanjing Visual Art College and Nanjing Art University.

In addition there will be other discussions and presentations on Chinese independent cinema (including one by yours truly on behalf of dGenerate); there’s even a “Young Movie Critics” training course on tap.

Yang Jins Er Dong, a dGenerate Films catalog title, is among the titles participating in the Feature Film Competition. Other dGenerate directors who have films in the festival are Ying Liang (Good Cats) and Zhao Dayong (Rough Poetry).

Shelly Kraicer profiled the CIFF on his virtual tour of the Chinese independent film circuit. He wrote, “the festival cultivates a real sense of intellectual energy and ferment.”

Main program of films follows after the break.