Shanghai: UCFTI Expo Unveils Plans for Expanded Fifth Edition

Courtesy of UCFTI Expo
A panel discussion held at the 2017 UCFTI Expo

The growing annual event, which brings together decision-makers from the U.S. and Chinese entertainment industries, will have a bigger presence at the American Film Market in Los Angeles this year.

The U.S. China Film & TV Industry Expo has revealed its plans for an expanded and enhanced fifth edition to be held in Los Angeles during dual dates in September and November this year.

The announcement was made at a press conference held in tandem with the Shanghai International Film Festival. Returning as event partners this year are the Motion Picture Association, China Film Co-Production Company and The Hollywood Reporter.

The bulk of the growing industry event, which gathers decision-makers from Hollywood and China to forge business ties and mentor the next generation of filmmakers, will take place in Los Angeles on September 26 and 27.

In 2017, the UCFTI Expo, together with the Beijing Bureau of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television, as well as Shanghai Oriental Pearl Group, hosted the "China Pavilion" in the American Film Market's flagship venue, Loews Santa Monica, in November. In 2018, the partners will expand China's presence at AFM with a "China Exhibition Hall," expected to attract a record number of top-tier Chinese film and TV companies. The Expo also will again organize a series of panel discussions featuring top Beijing and Hollywood executives addressing the issues driving growth in the world's two largest film and television markets. But this year's panels will be split between AFM and at the Expo in September to facilitate greater international industry attendance and participation.

“The U.S. and China have already established all-round co-operations in areas such as film production and distribution, which have grown rapidly," said Bianca Chen, founder and CEO of UCFTI Expo. "Faster and more services and contents provided by UCFTI Expo are required to promote more in-depth exchanges, co-operations, and integrations of the film and TV industries for both countries in a more efficient manner.”

UCFTI also said that the third annual Golden Screen Awards, which honors excellence in China-foreign film co-productions, will be held during the later date of November 3 in L.A.

In response to the rapid growth of video streaming in the both the U.S. and China, UCFTI Expo will add an increased focus on the sector. In advance of the Expo in September, an expert jury will select streaming works produced by emerging Chinese talents to be exhibited and potentially sold for international distribution, at the new China Exhibition Hall during AFM. 

"Through the establishment of such an exhibition platform, more and more excellent Chinese young talents will have opportunities to shine on the film stage internationally," Chen said.

The September Expo also will again bring back its Student Film Competition Awards. Over the first four UCFTI Expos, more than 600 students from the USC School of Cinematic Arts; UCLA School of Theater, Film and TV; NYU Film School; Chapman University; California College of the Arts and American Film Institute have submitted works for expert industry feedback and assessment through the platform. This year, students from the School of the Arts at Columbia University will also join the competition.

Joining Chen at the announcement event in Shanghai were luminaries from both the Chinese and U.S. film industries, including Xiaotian Miao, general manager of China Film Co-Production Corporation, and Mike Ellis, president of the Motion Picture Association of America in Asia Pacific.