Wednesday, May 9, 2012

NYAFF announces the first titles

The 11th New York Asian Film Festival is here!

June 29 - July 15, 2012
Co-presented with The Film Society of Lincoln Center!
In association with Japan Society
All screenings at the Walter Reade Theater and Japan Society!

The New York Asian Film Festival (June 29 - July 15) returns - and this year we’re bringing crazy back!

The opening night film is Pang Ho-cheung’s astonishingly filthy, extremely hilarious VULGARIA, a movie about making movies, shot in just 12 days, all about gangsters named Brother Tyrannosaur, sleazy lawyers, the sex film industry, and men who love donkeys a little too much. The Hollywood Reporter calls it a “...laugh-out-loud, aptly titled comedy.” Pang himself, Hong Kong's hottest young director, will be a guest of the festival and we'll be presenting his new romantic comedy, LOVE IN THE BUFF, about a couple who meet in the smoke break alley outside their office building and try to make their romance work despite cell phones dropped in toilets, friends who have the death touch, and corporate moves to Beijing.

We'll also be giving a Lifetime Achievement Award to Chung Chang-Wha, the great Korean action director whose 1972 movie for Hong Kong’s Shaw Brothers studio, FIVE FINGERS OF DEATH, was the first international martial arts hit to break through in the West. It launched the kung-fu craze over here, and we’ll have him in the house for a screening of a gorgeous print of FIVE FINGERS OF DEATH.

We are super-psyched to be bringing the man who is widely regarded as Korea's greatest actor, Choi Min-Sik (star of OLDBOY and I SAW THE DEVIL), here as our guest and we'll be screening his latest film, NAMELESS GANGSTER (TIME Magazine calls it “The Korean mob film Scorsese would be proud of.”) as well as a fistful of his classics, including OLDBOY and his underseen and heartbreaking boxing film, CRYING FIST.

Over the last few years, Taiwan's film industry has experienced a major revitalization, producing some of the biggest blockbusters in Asia after a brief lull in the late 90's and early 2000's. We'll be hosting a special focus on Taiwanese films, including a Fourth of July presentation of the humongous, uncut, four-and-a-half-hour SEEDIQ BALE, which is that country’s exhilarating, decapitation-filled version of BRAVEHEART, all about its indigenous people fighting for their freedom in 1930. We'll also be screening the hit romantic comedy, YOU ARE THE APPLE OF MY EYE, which set box office records in Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Mainland China.

We've also got a brand new movie from Takashi Miike (PHOENIX WRIGHT: ACE ATTORNEY), a 30-minute short film from Korea’s Park Chan-Wook and his brother Park Chan-Kyung (NIGHT FISHING), NASI LEMAK 2.0, a Malaysian food movie directed by and starring controversial rapper, Namewee, which is one of the most delicious, hyperkinetic, totally redonkulous comedies we’ve ever seen, the brutal animated feature, KING OF PIGS fresh out of Cannes, SCABBARD SAMURAI, the latest film from Hitoshi Matsumoto (director and star of SYMBOL), and more, more, more!!!

The New York Asian Film Festival is deeply grateful for the support of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office New York (which is celebrating the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region this year), the Korean Cultural Service New York, and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in New York.


Now in its 11th year, the New York Asian Film Festival is North America’s leading festival of popular Asian cinema, which the New York Times has called " of the city's most valuable events...". Launched in 2002 by Subway Cinema, the Festival selects only the best, strangest, and most entertaining movies to screen for New York audiences, ranging from mainstream blockbusters and art-house eccentricities to genre and cult classics. It was the first North American film festival to champion the works of Johnnie To, Bong Joon-Ho, Park Chan-Wook, Takashi Miike, and other auteurs of contemporary Asian cinema. The Festival has been produced in collaboration with the Film Society of Lincoln Center since 2010.

For all festival news and updates:
twitter: @subwaycinema, #NYAFF12 (currently under construction)

Subway Cinema is America's leading non-profit organization dedicated to increasing exposure and appreciation for Asian popular film culture in all its forms. As the main arbiter of trends and discoveries in Asian cinema for more than a decade, the organization was the first in America to recognize the works of directors Johnnie To and Tsui Hark with retrospectives, and to bring attention to New Korean Cinema with the first New York Korean Film Festival. It also organized several notable programs of classic Hong Kong martial arts and horror films. In 2002, Subway Cinema launched its flagship annual event, the New York Asian Film Festival. It is widely considered invincible

Under the leadership of Rose Kuo, Executive Director, and Richard Peña, Program Director, the Film Society of Lincoln Center offers the best in international, classic and cutting-edge independent cinema. The Film Society presents two film festivals that attract global attention: the New York Film Festival, currently planning its 50th edition, and New Directors/New Films which, since its founding in 1972, has been produced in collaboration with MoMA. The Film Society also publishes the award-winning Film Comment Magazine, and for over three decades has given an annual award—now named “The Chaplin Award”—to a major figure in world cinema. Past recipients of this award include Charlie Chaplin, Alfred Hitchcock, Martin Scorsese, Meryl Streep, and Tom Hanks. The Film Society presents a year-round calendar of programming, panels, lectures, educational programs and specialty film releases at its Walter Reade Theater and the new state-of-the-art Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center.
The Film Society receives generous, year-round support from Royal Bank of Canada, American Airlines, The New York Times, Stella Artois, the National Endowment for the Arts and New York State Council on the Arts. For more information, visit

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