Hanoi plans inaugural film fest

Vietnamese capital celebrates millennium with cinema event

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BUSAN, South Korea -- Vietnam will celebrate the 1,000th anniversary of Hanoi with the launch next year of the country's first film festival.

"Vietnamese film is at a very early stage of development," said Ngo Thi Bich Hanh, vp sales and acquisition at Vietnam Media. "The idea of the festival is to create a big event and help people to learn to love cinema."

Running Oct. 27-31, the Vietnam International Film Festival will comprise public screenings of some 50-60 movies and a 10-title competition section. The emphasis will be on Asia, and Southeast Asia in particular.

"The world cinema section will mostly be crowd-pleasers, while the competition will focus more on art house films and Asian premieres," Ngo said. "One of the prizes will be selected as an audience award, come with a distribution deal and $30,000 of in kind promotion and marketing support."

The event is backed by Vietnam Media and the Cinema Department of the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism. Screenings will take place at the soon-to-open BHD-MPV Global multiplex. The announcement was made Monday night at a party at Pusan's Paradise Hotel.