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China Clamps Down on Another Independent Film Festival

Poster of the 11th Beijing Independent Film Festival. via @johndjinggang’s Facebook

“The darkest day in the history of Chinese independent film” 

Chinese authorities shut down the 11th Annual Beijing Independent Film Festival (BIFF) and arrested the festival’s organizers on Saturday, August 23. The festival is organized annually by the Li Xianting Film Fund, which is located on the outskirts of Beijing city, in Songzhuang district’s Xiaobao village.

Chinese leaders have spoken publicly about their desire to promote homegrown culture, but crackdowns such as this one show a reality that is vastly different from the rhetoric

Promoting culture

The new leadership of the Chinese Community Party under President Xi Jinping vowed to promote China’s soft power by pushing forward the cultural industry. In the past few years, state-controlled film corporations have invested in a number of big movies by building partnerships with their Hong Kong and Taiwan counterparts, thus establishing a pan-Chinese film market.

In addition, the quota for imported foreign movies keeps expanding. US and China co-production is encouraged, under the condition that all films produced under this collaboration are subject to China’s censorship mechanism.

While China has indeed become the world’s biggest market for cultural consumption, the government has no plans to relax its control over cultural output. In fact, the clampdown on independent art activities has never been harsher.

Read the rest on GlobalVoicesOnline.com –>

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About Winter Film Awards

Winter Film Awards (WFA) is a volunteer-run and operated celebration of the diversity of local and international film-making. Our Mission is to recognize excellence in cinema and to promote learning and artistic expression for people at all stages of their artistic careers with a focus on nurturing emerging filmmakers and helping them gain recognition and contacts to break into this difficult industry. We pride ourselves on our diverse collection of Festival selections, allowing our audience to enjoy films they normally wouldn’t think to seek out. WFA is a minority- and women-owned registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

Posted on October 2, 2014, in Diversity in Film, General Information and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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