Asian World Film Festival Announces Competition, Centerpiece, and Special Screenings Line-Up

·5 min read

Festival Champions Unity with Theater Presentations, In-Person Appearances, and Live Events

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 28, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The 2021 Asian World Film Festival (AWFF) today unveiled its Competition, Centerpiece, and Special Screenings slate. The three Festival programs will together showcase fiction and documentary features from at least 14 nations, highlighting this year's theme of unity. The schedule will include at least seven Academy Award for Best International Feature Film submissions and tributes to celebrated Chinese-American actresses Lisa Lu and Nancy Kwan and Vietnamese-American actress Kieu Chinh. The closing night film will be South Korea's official submission to the 2022 Academy Awards®, Escape from Mogadishu. The AWFF, now in its seventh year, will take place November 1 – 11, 2021 at the Landmark Theater, West Pico Blvd., Los Angeles.

"AWFF's Competition, Centerpiece, and Special Screening series will spotlight the stories, passions, and convictions of a wide swath of accomplished and emerging Asian, Middle Eastern, and Asian-American filmmakers, adding a window to Africa," said Georges N. Chamchoun, AWFF executive director. "They shared the determination to create films for your reflection and enjoyment despite the challenges of the past two years and to pay tribute to the hope of unity."

The Competition lineup includes the U.S. premiere of Kyrgyzstan's Shambala, the country's official Oscar submission. The Centerpiece movie is the documentary Qazaq: History of the Golden Man, directed by Igor Lopatonok and featuring Oliver Stone, also a producer who will attend the screening.

Among the Special Screenings is the world premiere of director Michael Pascal's documentary feature We Are Not Alone, followed by a live Q&A with spiritual leader Deepak Chopra. Additional U.S. premieres in the festival include Lebanon's Yusif and Kyrgyzstan's The Road to Eden.

Serving on the 2021 AWFF jury are: Sydney Levine, film consultant (jury President); Loni Anderson, actress, author, activist; Andrzej Bartkowiak, cinematographer; Lianne Hu, film producer, writer, actor, businessperson; Cheng Sim-Lim, film curator; Peter Luo, film producer, business person; Arati Misro, film producer, and Ivana Nguyen, film producer, actress.

Additional programming will be announced in the coming week.

2021 OFFICIAL SELECTION - IN COMPETITION

(** Official Submission, 94th Academy Awards®)

Should the Wind Drop (Armenia), drama, directed by Nora Martirosyan **

Yuni (Indonesia), drama, directed by Kamila Andini **

Shambala (Kyrgyzstan), drama, directed by Artykpai Suyundukov **

U.S. premiere

Al Garib (The Stranger) (Palestine), drama, directed by Ameer Fakher Eldin,

Sponsored by Jackson Market **

Let It Be Morning (Israel), drama, directed by Eran Kolirin **

Pebbles (India), drama, directed by P.S. Vinothraj **

Brighton 4th (Georgia), drama, directed by Levan Koguash Vili **

200 Meters (Palestine), thriller, directed by Ameen Nayfeh

Asu (Sri Lanka), drama, directed by Sanjeewa Pushpakumara

Fire (Kazakhstan), comedy, directed by Aizhan Kassymbek

2021 OFFICIAL SELECTION, NON-COMPETITIVE

The Road to Eden (Kyrgyzstan), drama, directed by Dastan Zhaparuulu and Bakyt Mukul

U.S. premiere

Wuhan Wuhan (China), documentary, directed by Yung Chang,

Presented by Starlight Media

Raging Fire (Hong Kong), action thriller, directed by Benny Chan,

Presented by Well Go, USA

A Writer's Odyssey (China), action fantasy, directed by Lu Yang

Yusif (Lebanon), psychological thriller, directed by Mohamad Kazeem Fayad (Kazim Fayad), Sponsored by Regals de Bretagne

2021 CENTERPIECE FILM

Qazaq History of the Golden Man (USA), documentary, directed by Igor Lopatonok

2021 SPECIAL SCREENINGS

Flower Drum Song (USA, 1961), musical, directed by Henry Koster,

60th Anniversary, actress Nancy Kwan to attend

The Disappearance of Mrs. Wu (USA), comedy, directed by Anna Chi,

Tribute to Lisa Lu's 65th anniversary in entertainment, cast and crew appearances

The Villainess (2017), South Korea, thriller, directed by Jung Byung-gil

Presented by the Korean Cultural Center, Los Angeles

Ahimsa Gandhi: The Power of the Powerless (India) documentary, directed by Ramesh Sharma

Americanish (USA) comedy, directed by Iman K. Zawahry

Fathers (Cambodia), drama, directed by Huy Yaleng

Journey from the Fall (USA, 2006), drama, directed by Ham Tran

Tribute to the movie's 15th anniversary. Actress Kieu Chinh will appear in-person, followed by book signing with Kieu Chinh, Vietnamese American actress, humanitarian, lecturer, and philanthropist.

Dawn of Thunder (The Origin of Sango): Sneak Screening of the animated feature by GDN Studios Nigeria. World Premiere

Covid-19 protocol: The AWFF is committed to the safety of all participants at all events and venues and will adhere to the standards set by the City of Los Angeles.

Sponsors and Partners include: Aitysh Film, The City of Culver City, DAO Medical Group, The One Heart Movement, Winn Slavin Fine Art, Stars Collective & Starlight, Snow Leopard Trust, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Korean Cultural Center, LA, Asia Society, Asia Group Plus Holdings, Dutcher Crossing Winery, CBN 14.5, GDN STUDIOS (Nigeria), Variety, AKIpress, Art Confidential Magazine, The Landmark, SPRK Music, Prodocbus, Sparklight, Moredii, Novartizan, Asiania, AiKhun Entertainment, Fifth Atrium, DeJong Film, Beirut Film Society, Wende Museum of the Cold War, Jackson's Market & Cafe, L'Amai, Pholicious, Emporium Thai, Kitchen 51, La Cuisine with Chef Josette & Normandie Country Bakery, Gaby's Mediterranean LA & Regals De Bretagne.

ABOUT THE ASIAN WORLD FILM FESTIVAL (AWFF)

The Asian World Film Festival (AWFF), founded by Kyrgyz public figure Sadyk Sher-Niyaz, brings the best of a broad selection of Asian world cinema to Los Angeles to draw greater recognition to the region's wealth of filmmakers and to strengthen ties between the Asian and Hollywood film industries. Uniting through cross-cultural collaboration, the Festival champions films from more than 50 countries across Asia, from Turkey to Japan and from Russia to India and the Middle East. All participating films are provided with the unique opportunity to be guided through the challenging awards season. They're also showcased to Motion Picture Academy members, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and the entertainment Guilds for enhanced exposure, media attention, and awards consideration. AWFF is a non-profit organization under Aitysh, USA.

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