Hong Kong International Film Festival to return this month

Gary Chiu

Hong Kong International Film Festival to return this month

HONG KONG – The 48th edition of the Hong Kong International Film Festival – which will run from March 28 to April 8 – will feature 194 movies from 62 countries and regions.

There will be total 307 screenings in various cinemas across the city, the organizers said at a press conference in the city on Friday.

Cinephiles in Hong Kong will have the opportunity to meet award-winning filmmakers during the festival. They include Irish writer-director Martin McDonagh and Spanish maestro Victor Erice, as well as Zar Amir, the first Iranian female actress to win Best Actress award at the Cannes Film Festival.

"As transportation has resumed after COVID-19, more world-renowned directors and movie writers will come to Hong Kong for the festival to engage with movie lovers by giving masterclasses and sharing their filmmaking experience," Wilfred Wong, chairman of the Hong Kong International Film Festival Society, said at the press conference.

Japanese multi-instrumentalist and composer Ishibashi Eiko will give a live performance on March 30. She composed music for director Hamaguchi’s Evil does not exist and the silent film GIFT was created to accompany her live performance.

Other than global movie professionals, local filmmakers will also get the spotlight during the annual festival.

The festival will kick off with a new local movie, All shall be well, which has won the Teddy Award at the 74th Berlin International Film Festival in February.

Director Ray Yeung, whose another award-winning movie is Suk Suk, captured the bittersweet story about the inheritance right of a partner of a lesbian couple in Hong Kong, where the partner passed away and the other one lost all of her assets due to the lack of legal protection for same-sex couples, and more importantly, love and care from her partner’s family members and relatives in her twilight years.

Hong Kong independent film pioneer Fruit Chan has been picked as "the filmmaker in focus" for this year's festival, showcasing his early work of the 1997 trilogy Made in Hong Kong, The Longest Summer and Little Cheung, as well as his recent works.

Renowned actress Karena Lam has been named as the ambassador for the 48th edition of the event.

“I feel very honored for being recognized for my contribution to Hong Kong’s movie industry for more than 20 years," Lam, a ceramics enthusiast, said at the press conference.

Other than screening of new and restored classic movies, budding talents will also compete for the Firebird Awards for outstanding movies, short film and documentaries. The participating works will also be screened during the festival.

Tickets will be available for purchase starting from 10 am on Tuesday on the HKIFF official website.

The HKIFF is Asia’s longest-running platform for filmmakers, film professionals, and filmgoers worldwide to launch new work and experience outstanding films.