Global film fes­ti­val a hit

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE - By DAVID HOU in Van­cou­ver For China Daily

More than 100 films from all around the world com­peted in the sec­ond an­nual Cana­dian In­ter­na­tional Film and Tele­vi­sion Fes­ti­val. The three day event, which took place on Nov 6–8 in Van­cou­ver, rolled out the red car­pet for a guest list that in­cluded top Hol­ly­wood pro­fes­sion­als as well as lo­cal gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials.

With a fo­cus on both di­verse cul­tures and cin­e­matic ex­cel­lence, the fi­nal­ists in­cluded films from Ukraine, Ge­or­gia, USA, China and Canada.

“There are a lot of film fes­ti­vals right now,” Demi Zhang, pres­i­dent of the Cana­dian Film and Tele­vi­sion In­sti­tute (CFTI) and pres­i­dent of the North Amer­ica (In­ter­na­tional) Mul­ti­cul­tural Film­mak­ers So­ci­ety, said in an in­ter­view with China Daily. “We’re try­ing to make this as pro­fes­sional as pos­si­ble and as mul­ti­cul­tural as pos­si­ble.”

“We are the only film fes­ti­val in the world to have so many cul­tures in­volved. This year, we have over 100 films,” Zhang said. “There is no dis­crim­i­na­tion. We have films from Viet­nam, In­dia, Nepal, Iran, Is­rael, as well as Asian ones. Ev­ery­one brings a love for films and trusts us enough to make this film fes­ti­val hap­pen. To me, this has mean­ing. I want to give film-lovers from around the world a big plat­form.”

At­ten­dees at this year’s awards pre­sen­ta­tion in­cluded Se­na­tor Yonah Martin; Ge­orges Le­clére, for­mer se­nior vice-pres­i­dent and ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the In­ter­na­tional

China will definitely be one of the most sought af­ter [film] tar­gets.”

Emmy Awards; Richard Lee, MLA for Burn­aby North; Bill Harper, New West­min­ster coun­cil­lor; David Traub, Hol­ly­wood pro­ducer and Har­vard Univer­sity Pro­fes­sor; Christopher Brough, pres­i­dent of Movie Plus En­ter­tain­ment Group; and Michel Zgarka, chair­man and CEO of XII Tribes En­ter­tain­ment, among oth­ers.

This year’s fes­ti­val fea­tured spe­cial pan­els for stu­dent ac­tors and film­mak­ers to in­ter­act with in­dus­try pro­fes­sion­als, in ad­di­tion to the screen­ings and awards cer­e­mony.

Pro­fes­sion­als in the film in­dus­try es­pe­cially em­pha­sized the need for more co­op­er­a­tive films be­tween China and the West. Michel Zgarka said, “I think China will definitely be one of the most sought af­ter [film] tar­gets due to its cre­ativ­ity and the po­ten­tial of do­ing more in­ter­est­ing bi­lat­eral pro­duc­tions be­tween North Amer­ica and China. I think this fes­ti­val is a per­fect match for putting all those cul­tures to­gether.”

Ge­orge Le­clére also said that Chi­nese movies are grow­ing. “The ac­tors, the direc­tors, the pro­duc­ers are start­ing to be known,” he said.

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