Irish Film Institute -Inaugural Chinese-Language Film Festival opens this Thursday, May 11th, in the presence of internationally acclaimed filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien

Inaugural Chinese-Language Film Festival opens this Thursday, May 11th, in the presence of internationally acclaimed filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien

May 9th, 2017 — The inaugural Chinese-language Film Festival Ireland débuts this Thursday, May 11th, at the Irish Film Institute with a focus on the work of master filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien, who will be present at the festival, alongside his longtime collaborator, screenwriter Chu Tien-Wen.

Running across the weekend, the festival will feature an exclusive masterclass with Hou Hsiao-Hsien, post-screening Q&As, and rarely-screened award-winning films by the internationally-acclaimed Taiwanese master director. The masterclass, supported by Screen Training Ireland, will be led by Chinese-language cinema expert Professor Chris Berry of King’s College London.

The festival opens on May 11th with a screening of the martial arts epic The Assassin (2015). The film won the Best Director prize at Cannes, and was nominated for several international awards including the BAFTA for Best Foreign Language Film. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with the director and screenwriter.

The festival will feature rare screenings of three films spanning Hou’s career. Fuelled by memories from childhood, A Time To Live, A Time to Die, is both autobiographical and universal. The recently-restored The Boys from Fengkuei (1983), reflects on Hou’s youth, with gangs on the streets of southern port city Kaohsiung, while A City of Sadness, winner of the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival, is rooted in a haunting period of 20th century Taiwan history.

Also featuring will be the Irish premieres of Huang Hui-Chen’s documentary Small Talk and Midi Z’s The Road to Mandalay. A special screening has also been organised with the support of the Taiwan Film Institute of King Hu’s wuxia martial arts classic A Touch of Zen (1971), the first Chinese-language film to win at Cannes.

The Chinese-Language Film Festival acknowledges the support of its principal partners the Irish Film Institute, Ministry of Culture of the Republic of China (Taiwan), Taiwan Film Institute, Screen Training Ireland and Asia Market. Additionally, the Festival is made possible with the support of Scieneering Consulting Ltd., Taiwan Ireland Association, Dublin School of Mandarin Chinese and Classics Chinese Medicine Clinic.

Tickets for Made in Taiwan are available now at or by calling the IFI Box Office on 01-6793477. More information is also available from

For interview requests, and images contact Yvonne Kennedy ( at the CLFFI on 086-0810421 or Michelle McDonagh ( at the IFI on 01 6793477.



THURSDAY MAY 11th (18.00): The Assassin

The screening of The Assassin will be followed by a Q&A moderated by John Maguire of the Sunday Business Post.

FRIDAY MAY 12th (18.00): A Time to Live, A Time to Die

The screening of A Time to Live, A Time to Die, will be followed by a Q&A moderated by Tara Brady of The Irish Times.

FRIDAY MAY 12th (21.15): Small Talk

SATURDAY MAY 13th (12.00): Masterclass with Hou Hsiao-Hsien

SATURDAY MAY 13th (14.30): The Boys From Fengkuei

SATURDAY MAY 13th (18.00): The Road to Mandalay

SUNDAY MAY 14th (14.00): A Touch of Zen

The screening of A Touch of Zen will be introduced by Professor Chris Berry

SUNDAY MAY 14th (17.30): A City of Sadness

The screening of A City of Sadness will be followed by a conversation with Hou Hsaio-Hsien, Chu Tien-Wen, and Professor Chris Berry

The IFI acknowledges the support of the Arts Council.




The Irish Film Institute is Ireland’s national cultural institution for film. It provides audiences throughout Ireland with access to the finest independent, Irish and international cinema. It preserves and promotes Ireland’s moving image heritage through the IFI Irish Film Archive, and provides opportunities for audiences of all ages and backgrounds to learn and critically engage with film.


Born to Hakka parents in Guangdong Province, Hou fled to Taiwan as an infant with his family to escape civil war in China.  After Hou dropped out of high school, he completed his mandatory military training, and ran away from his family to Taiwan’s capital city of Taipei, eventually graduating from the National Arts Academy, where he became enamored of New Wave directors like Godard and Truffaut.

Since directing his début feature Cute Girl in 1980, Hou has enjoyed a prolific career as a director of 21 films, and as a producer on 14 films including the Oscar Nominated Raise the Red Lantern directed by Zhang Yimou. Six of his films have been nominated for the Cannes’ Palm D’Or. Hou’s long list of international accolades include the Cannes Best Director Award for The Assassin (2015), the Locarno International Film Festival Leopard of Honour (2007), the Cannes Jury Prize for The Puppetmaster (1993), the Venice Film Festival’s Golden Lion for A City of Sadness (1989).


The IFI is supported
by The Arts Council

Arts Council of Ireland