Nine young and promising actors were chosen Saturday to promote the 2009 Taipei Film Festival (TaipeiFF) and were immediately put to work selling the first tickets put on sale for the event.
The festival's organizers, the Taipei City government and the Taipei Culture Foundation, announced at a news conference that nine rising actors and actresses -- Wen Sheng-hao, Mo Zi-yi, Bryant Chan, Janel Tsai, Alice Ko, Ko Huan-ju, Jozie Lu, Tang Chen-kang and Lin Po-hong -- were chosen as this year's "TaipeiFF Shooting Stars" in recognition of their achievements on the big movieВ screen.
I'm overwhelmingly surprised to be chosen as a shooting star.
It is a god-given present, said model-turned-actress Tsai, who added that she is still learning about acting and hopes to deliver more solid performances in the future.
Noting that movies have changed her life completely, Ko Huan-ju said movies were the first thing that she ever wanted to give everything for.
Event curator Jane Yu said the TaipeiFF is a harvest time for the public and people in the film industry and gives them the chance to see the achievements of Taiwanese movies over the past year.
Through this event, we also hope to remind people that watching movies is something joyful, she added.
The nine TaipeiFF Shooting Stars served as one-day salesmen after Saturday's news conference. A total of 150 limited edition TaipeiFF Passes each worth NT$2,200 (US$67) were sold out in minutes to film enthusiasts.
Pass holders, who will receive special perks, including a free trip to the Museum of Contemporary Art Taipei, can redeem up to four tickets per day -- a maximum of one ticket per screening -- during the festival.
Another 1,000 TaipeiFF Ticket Packages that include 10 tickets for 10 screenings are also available for NT$1,500, while sales of individual tickets will start May 27 on the Web site of Art Tickets and at festival venues Taipei Zhongshan Hall and Shin Kong Cineplex.
Established in 1998, the TaipeiFF is the biggest showcase for international cinema and Chinese-speaking films in Taiwan. This year's festival will be held from June 26 to July 12 under the theme of Berlin. Featuring over 100 films from home and abroad, the festival will present audiences with Berlin-themed films, the works of celebrated filmmakers and selections from new global talents.
The festival will also hold free outdoor screenings, called Fun Movies, in Ximending, organize a film market selling film-inspired handmade items at the Red House, and put on a filmmaking exhibition of noted Chinese director King Hu.
By Rachel Chan