Chinese films "Drifters" and "Purple Butterfly" will be in the spotlight during the coming 56th Cannes film festival which opens next Wednesday.
The two films will be shown in a special column called "一种注目" meaning a kind of focus. It is usually seen as a great honor for a director to have his works listed in this column. 20 movies from around the world have entered the section.
"Drifter" is directed by Chinese new generation director Wang Xiaoshuai, who is making his second appearance in Cannes after the last time in 1999. Wang is known for his stories of common people's lives. His film "Bicycle" won him great praise domestically.
Drifter also tells a simple story of a man from a small town in Southern China who has a son after he goes to America. Unable to make a living there, he returns home without his son, waiting for the day when he can return too.
Wang Xiaoshuai, was born in Shanghai in 1966. He is considered as one of the most talented young filmmakers in China. A graduate of the Beijing Film Academy in 1988, he wrote and directed his first feature film, "The Days", in 1994. This film received critical acclaim in the West but was blacklisted by the Chinese board of censors, as was its director. At the end of 1995 he joined the Beijing Film Studio and directed "A Vietnamese Girl" which was also censured. After 3 years of cutting at the editing table and a title changed into "So Close to Paradise" the film is finally passed by the censors. "So Close to Paradise" was selected for the Cannes Film Festival in 1999 in the "Un Certain Regard" section. "Beijing Bicycle", his fifth feature film, obtained the Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival in 2001.
(China Radio International May 8, 2003)