Judging by the openingweekend, the Shanghai International Film Festival (June 17-25) is finallystarting to take advantage of its position as mainland
Past editions have struggledto attract stars or premieres - mostly because of restrictions and otherproblems in the Chinese movie market - but the
Ang Lee also received hugecheers as he strolled up the red carpet and was later presented with an awardfor "Outstanding Contribution to Chinese-language Film".
Underscoring thecontradictions in
Coincidentally, NicoleKidman was also in
In addition to increasedstar wattage, the festival has also been striving to improve its programmingwhich has lacked focus in previous years.
Four of the 17 films in theJin Jue International Film Competition are world premieres and the line-up alsofeatures a British Films Showcase and retrospective of jury president LucBesson. Anthony Minghella, also the subject of a retrospective, is scheduled tospeak on Wednesday (June 21).
Ang Lee, who is gearing upto shoot Shanghai-set war thriller Lust,Caution this autumn, also spoke at a seminar on Sunday (June 18) about therelationship between Chinese cinema and Hollywood. "I can take advantage of thebest of both worlds but also suffer," said Lee. "One movie may be popular in
The festival also has afocus on Sino-European co-production and is hosting a series of one-to-onemeetings between European and Chinese filmmakers. A delegation from the
Pedro Almodovar's Volver closes the festival on June 25.