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Taipei film festival opens with Brazilian dances

Taipei Film Festival opens with Samba dance performance

The annual local movie extravaganza 2010 Taipei International Film Festival opened Friday (June 26) and runs until July 15, with its focus on Brazil this year.

The festival features a total of 150-plus films from about 50 countries around the globe.

First launched in 1998, the festival picks one foreign city as its theme city each year, and this year's focus is Rio de Janeiro.

The opening banquet drew a number of political figures including Taipei City Mayor Hau Lung-pin, Deputy Mayor Lee Yong-ping, Government Information Office Minister Johnny Chiang and chief of Taipei Cultural Affairs Department Hsieh Hsiao-Yu, as well as famous director/filmmakers Hou Hsiao-hsien.

Since the theme of this year’s film festival is Brazil, the organizers of the event invited Brazilian Samba dancers to perform the iconic dance of the nation.

About 30 Brazilian films will be screened during the festival, and the opening film is the Brazilian film “Elite Squad”, winner of the Golden Bear prize at the 2008 Berlin Film Festival.

Famous Brazilian directors and actors also joined in Friday’s ceremony in Taipei, including Aluizio Abranches, director of the Brazilian film “From Beginning to End” and Jose Wilker, leading actor in the movie “Bye Bye Brazil”.

Following the opening ceremony came the premier screening of a local film “The Fourth Portrait” by director Chung Mong-hong. Leon Dai, the leading actor in the film, also was part of the action for the movie’s premiere.

Other Taiwan-produced feature films that will be shown in the film fest include “Tears”, “Au Revoir Taipei,” “Hear Me”, “Monga”, “Pinoy Sunday” and “Taipei Exchanges”.