The third edition of the California-based Taiwan Biennial Film Festival started this week with the theatrical premiere of one of this year’s most successful Taiwanese films, leading the lineup of more than 20 feature films and shorts to be shown until Friday.
Headlining the festival is director Yin Chen-hao’s (殷振豪) Man in Love (當男人戀愛時), which debuted in the US at Hollywood’s TCL Chinese Theater on Wednesday, attended by film critics, the festival’s organizers and sponsors, as well as film enthusiasts.
The 10-day festival, themed “Breadth of Life,” also showcases the feature-length and short films on the Watchbeem online platform, which sponsors the event.
At the premiere of Yin’s movie, Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Los Angeles Director-General Louis Huang (黃敏境) said that this year’s festival marks the first collaboration between his office and figures from the US movie industry.
“I hope to bring Taiwan to Hollywood, the movie capital of the world,” Huang said. “I want the US audience to see the unique aesthetic of Taiwanese films and our culture.”
Nikki DePaola, a former president of the Taiwanese United Fund, which sponsors the festival, said: “It’s more important than ever to have Taiwanese representation in mainstream American pop culture and American media.”
“It’s a way for Taiwan to express itself — its individualism, its culture and its heritage,” she said.
Festival curator Douglas Montgomery said after the screening: “Taiwan can tell a very good story.”
“I think if you have a good story, people are captivated by it,” said Montgomery, who is chief executive officer of media consulting company Global Connects and founder and executive producer of the Japan Connects Hollywood Film Festival.
The festival is organized by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office’s Taiwan Academy in partnership with the Taiwan Creative Content Agency. It is also supported by the Ministry of Culture in Taipei.
The sponsors of the festival also include Taiwanese-American arts and culture foundation TUF.
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