Shanghai Competition Lineup Features Joffe’s ‘Dragons’

Tayrona Entertainment

Nine imported Golden Cup nominees hail from eight countries.

BEIJING – Nine of the 16 feature film nominees for the Golden Cups to be awarded at the 14th Shanghai International Film Festival in June were announced Tuesday, led by Oscar-nominated British director Roland Joffe’s new Spanish Civil War history There Be Dragons.

Organizers of the SIFF, which runs from June 11-19, also named as nominees three other European films, two films from Japan, and one title each from Argentina, Turkey and the Indian subcontinent.

Apart from Joffe’s Dragons and two other titles, SIFF’s competition nominees thus far all are films from 2010. This is likely because of the time it takes for China’s state media monitors to censor all films intended for public big screen consumption.

Excluding Dragons, which had a wide but weak theatrical opening in the U.S. over the weekend, Argentine director Nacho Garassino’s prison escape drama The Bones Tunnel and German Andi Rogenhagen’s Tourette’s syndrome family comedy Alive and Kicking are the SIFF’s two newest competition titles.

The other 2011 SIFF European contenders named were Ainom, by Lorenzo Ceva Valla of Italy and Hydraulics, by Yevgeni Serov of Russia. The Japanese titles nominated were Bunny Drop by Hiroyuki Tanaka and Tomorrow’s Joe by Fumihiko Sori.

Hayde Bre, by Orhan Oguz of Turkey and The Quest by Goutam Ghose of India/Bangladesh rounded out the selection to be judged by a jury led by American Oscar-winning Rain Man director Barry Levinson. The jury will award Golden Cups in eight categories.

No Chinese films were named on Monday but are expected to dominate the list of seven remaining nominees to be announced in the coming weeks.

SIFF Business Director Yu Kan said in a statement that the festival organizers were pleased to have attracted better-known directors this year and to have improved on the quality of the prints it intends to show, highlighting the event’s “growing international influence.”

SIFF guests will no doubt compare the competition line up with the big films expected to be featured at the inaugural edition of ScreenSingapore, set to overlap by a day, running from June 5-12.