China celebrates Irish cinema
by Naman Ramachandran
16/06/2010 - Chinese filmgoers are in for an Irish treat as the ongoing Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF, June 12-20) and Beijing International Movie Festival (BIMF, June 7-30), supported by Culture Ireland and presented in association with the Irish Film Institute’s (IFI) touring programme Reel Ireland and the Irish Film Board (IFB), prepare to showcase Irish cinema.
A programme of 13 Irish contemporary and retrospective feature films – including Five Minutes of Heaven [trailer], Once [trailer], The Secret of Kells [trailer, film focus], Michael Collins and My Left Foot – along with several shorts has been selected to screen at both festivals.
Eugene Downes, Chief Executive of Culture Ireland, the state agency for the promotion of Irish arts abroad, said, “This is a great opportunity for Chinese audiences in Beijing and Shanghai to connect with Irish film, and with Ireland.”
IFB CEO Simon Perry said, “The inclusion of a programme of Irish cinema at these two major Chinese film festivals is tremendously gratifying. The promotion of Irish talent in this huge and vital market can yield significant dividends in terms of enterprise, trade and investment.”
Sarah Glennie, director of the IFI, said, “The sheer breadth of Irish film presented within these important festivals is testament to the growing interest in Irish culture in China. We are delighted to work with Irish Film Board and Culture Ireland to deliver this programme of quality Irish cinema through the IFI Reel Ireland touring cinema programme.”