26th June 2021 – (Hong Kong) With the support of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Brussels (HKETO, Brussels), Create Hong Kong (CreateHK) and the Hong Kong International Film Festival Society (HKIFFS), Hong Kong films are enjoying a strong presence at the 23rd Far East Film Festival (FEFF) in Udine, Italy from 24th June to 2nd July.
The FEFF is one of the largest film festivals in Europe, showcasing the latest productions from Asia and receiving significant national and international interest from the film industry, cultural sector and media. HKETO, Brussels has been supporting Hong Kong film events at the FEFF for more than a decade. Following the latest COVID-19 restrictions in Udine, the FEFF this year is organised in a hybrid format, with films being shown in theatres and through online screenings.
A total of 64 films from 11 Asian regions are being screened in this year’s FEFF. With support from the HKETO, Brussels, CreateHK and the HKIFFS, 14 Hong Kong films are being screened at this year’s FEFF, including eight recent Hong Kong films featuring virtual post-screening talks with their filmmakers under the Hong Kong New Talents programme, which is specially organised to showcase the strong creativity and artistry of emerging Hong Kong filmmakers.
Before the screening of “Shock Wave 2”, the opening film for online screening in the evening of 24th June, followed by a theatre screening in the evening of 25th June, the Deputy Representative of HKETO, Brussels, Miss Fiona Chau, addressed audiences through a pre-recorded video. Miss Chau thanked the FEFF for sharing its appreciation of Hong Kong movies and filmmakers, as well as for its unwavering support to the film industry, particularly during this difficult time of the global pandemic. Miss Chau highlighted that apart from financing the production of small-to-medium budget films and supporting the industry to join international film festivals, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government also subsidises training programmes to nurture young talents. In particular, the HKSAR Government has launched the Directors’ Succession Scheme, in which established directors will team up with young filmmakers to co-produce films, with subsidies granted.
“This year’s festival is very special as it takes notice of Hong Kong’s emerging film talents. Through the Hong Kong New Talents programme, the international audience has the opportunity to experience the creativity of a new generation of Hong Kong filmmakers. We are proud that a number of government-sponsored films have successfully made their way to various international film festivals. We look forward to bringing more Hong Kong films to Italian audiences,” Miss Chau said.
Miss Chau also took the opportunity to highlight that the core values of Hong Kong, including freedom of speech and free flow information, ideas and talent, have created a favourable environment for creative industries to flourish. She encouraged talents from all over the world, including Italy, to come to Hong Kong to explore the opportunities offered by the city.
The eight Hong Kong films presented under the Hong Kong New Talents programme in this year’s FEFF are:
- Jun Li’s “Drifting”;
- Chan Kin-long’s “Hand Rolled Cigarette”;
- Erica Li’s “Just 1 Day”;
- Man Lim-chung’s “Keep Rolling”;
- Chiu Sin-hang’s “One Second Champion”;
- Sunny Lau’s “Sugar Street Studio”;
- Ricky Ko’s “Time”; and
- Jimmy Wan’s “Zero to Hero”.
The other six Hong Kong films screened at this year’s FEFF are:
- Herman Yau’s “Shock Wave 2”;
- Adam Wong’s “The Way We Keep Dancing”;
- Fruit Chan’s “Coffin Homes”;
- Soi Cheang’s “Limbo”;
- Emily Chan’s “Madalena”; and
- Andrew Lau’s and Alan Mak’s “Infernal Affairs” (restored version).
“Shock Wave 2” is the opening film of the online edition of this year’s FEFF, whereas the restored version of “Infernal Affairs” is the closing film for both threatre screenings and online screenings. “Sugar Street Studio”，”Zero to Hero”, “Coffin Homes” and “Madalena” will all have their world premieres at the FEFF. “The Way We Keep Dancing” and “Just 1 Day” are two of the successful projects funded by the Film Production Grant Scheme under the Film Development Fund, which was launched by the HKSAR Government in November 2015 to support small-to-medium budget film productions.