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Egypt honors China at Cairo International Film Festival

Reporter: Adel EL Mahrouky 丨 CCTV.com

11-26-2016 00:09 BJT

Egypt has honored China at this year's Cairo International Film Festival. Twenty Chinese movies were screened at the event, much to the delight and fascination of Egyptian film critics.

One film among the 20 Chinese productions screened at the Cairo International Film Festival has stolen the limelight: Jia Zhangke's Mountains May Depart. It addresses the cultural challenges Chinese migrants face abroad, and empathises with their struggle adapting to new customs while trying to preserve their identity.

Egypt honors China at Cairo International Film Festival

Egypt honors China at Cairo International Film Festival

"It's remarkable film. Jia Zhangke is a director with a legacy. That's why we're honouring him and his career. The movie focuses on trying to break away from traditions -- something many Egyptians can relate to. The topic isn't new, but the way he framed his film is quite unique," said director Andrew Mohsin, Cairo International Film Festival.

Jia says films like Mountains May Depart depict the essence of evolving cultural exchange.

"Egypt-China cultural relations are going through significant developments. Choosing China as a guest of honour and screening Chinese films here is a major step towards bringing our two cultures closer together. My film addresses modern struggles, and I think they're important to enable Egypt to better understand the Chinese people. We're also looking at screening Egyptian films in China, so both nations can grow closer," said Jia.

Jia is widely recognised on the international cinema scene. His films take part in festivals around the world, from Berlin to Venice and Cannes.

"China isn't just a developing economy; it's also a player in world cinema. Film-making in China has developed so much. This generation of directors has started criticising society and presenting different types of protagonists, unlike in the past," said film critic Amir El Emary.

"The screening of Chinese films in the 38th Cairo International Film Festival made filmmakers from both countries realise that the current cooperation in that field isn't enough. The year of Chinese culture may be coming to an end here in Egypt, but it seems that it could be the beginning of a stronger cultural exchange programmes between Egypt and China.

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