Taipei Golden Horse Fest: Five Taiwanese Films Sold to Italian State TV


The Asian head of Italian broadcaster Rai Cinema says he's excited to introduce Italy to a new generation of Taiwanese directors, following the past success of figures such as Hou Hsiao-hsien and Tsai Ming-liang at the Venice Film Festival.

TAIPEI, Taiwan – Five Taiwanese films have been acquired by Italy’s state-run television and radio broadcasting company, Rai Cinema. The titles include omnibus project Taipei Factory, which premiered at this year's Cannes Film Festival, Touch of the Light from director Rong-ji Chang, Doze Niu's Love and Monga, and Soul from Chung Mong-hong, who is nominated for a best director honor at this year's Golden Horse Awards, to be handed out Saturday, and is Taiwan's submission for the best foreign language film Oscar. 

The sales announcement was made at the Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival by representatives of the Taipei Film Commission and Rai Cinema. The two sides said the deal stems from a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the movie and television industry signed in September last year.

STORY: Oscars: Taiwan Nominates 'Soul' for Foreign Language Category

On top of the sales news, TFC and Rai Cinema said they are seeking further opportunities for film co-production and talent exchange between the Taiwanese and Italian industries. To that effect, beginning in 2014, Rai Cinema will host a Taiwan-focused film festival in Rome, and the TFC will host a festival centered on Italian films in Taipei.

Carlo Antonio Gentile, head of Rai Cinema's Asia department said that he's been happy to be introduced to the works of a younger generation of Taiwanese directors through the organization's recent activities here.

"In Italy, many people know the films by Hou Hsiao-hsien and Tsai Ming-liang, but I would like to have the voice of different directors heard in Italy."

Both Hou (City of Sadness) and Tsai (Vive l’Amour) have won the Venice Film Festival's Golden Lion prize in years past.