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13th Beijing Student Film Festival to Begin on April 8
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The 13th Beijing Student Film Festival showcases the latest Chinese films.


It is spring, 1993, and six teachers and five students belonging to the newly founded film and TV department of Beijing Normal University are going to great efforts to hold a low key student film festival. Every spring since, the Beijing Student Film Festival has grown in size, successfully sating the thirst of Chinese cinema fans. The festival will celebrate its 13th birthday this month on April 8. Open to the public, the twenty-day festival features everything from the latest Chinese films to foreign classics, as well as a variety of short films by students.


In the first portion, audiences will get a heavy dose of the finest in Chinese cinema with 28 new films being screened. The works of internationally revered directors will be played alongside those of first-time filmmakers. Audiences have the chance to catch up on a number of award-winning movies including Shanghai Dreams, Little Red Flowers, You and Me, Silent Holy Stone and more. Movies such as Mongolia Pingpong and Anayi will be premiered at the festival. Most screenings will be concluded with a talk from the directors and/or actors from each respective movie. Students will then have a chance to vote for Best Movie, Best Actor and Best Actress. This year the "Peacock Lady," Zhang Jingchu, is the spokesperson for the film festival and her latest movie, The Road, is also up for consideration.


The foreign film section will begin on April 22, and sixteen movies from France, America, Mexico, Australia, Greece and South Korea will be shown, including the classics Au Revoir Les Enfants, Diva, and newer works such as Mullet and My Mother Frank, as well as big budget Hollywood productions, including The Legend of Zorro and Mona Lisa Smile.


The annual student film festival is regarded as an important bridge between audiences and filmmakers, as well as providing a good opportunity for people to gain an understanding of the broad range of movies China has to offer. "Since the bigger Chinese film festivals will now be held every two years [the Hundred Flowers and Golden Rooster Film Festivals will only take place annually until 2007 and 2009 respectively], according to the official document from the China Broadcast Bureau, this festival has now become the only large-scale festival this year. It's a precious opportunity for film fans," says Yao Sijiang, the organizer from Beijing Normal University. "The festival is held for public interest, not for earning money, so the ticket price is low."


The Student Film Festival will be held at China Film Archives, China Digital Cinema and Beiguo Theater at Beijing Normal University, from April 8 to April 28. Tickets available at the cinemas. For more information, please visit and See Cinema Events on p52 for the schedule.


(That's Beijing April 3, 2006)

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