Taipei Film Festival 2019
The inaugural Taipei Film Festival was held in 1998, with the awards portion of the Festival founded in 1988 as the “China Times Express Film Awards” and renamed the “Taipei Film Awards” in 1994. Originally, nominations and awards were separated into commercial and non-commercial film categories to highlight the spirit of independent, non-mainstream cinema and to uncover a diverse range of films. Taipei City Government came on board in 1998, creating the festival by hosting the Taipei Film Awards and adding its NT$1 million “Grand Prize,” and facilitating the screening of international films. In so doing, Taipei Film Festival became the first film festival in Taiwan to be funded by a city government. The Taipei Film Festival became a permanent office under the Taipei Culture Foundation beginning in 2007. Held annually in the summer, the Festival also conducts numerous film-related activities in addition to the awards competition and film screenings to increase public participation.
The Festival chose a different “City in Focus” each year between 2002 and 2015, systematically guiding audiences towards international films through screenings and discussion forums. In 2005, the Festival added the “International New Talent Competition”, Taiwan’s first international competition focused on narrative feature films, dedicated to introducing new trends in international cinema and inviting contestants to Taiwan for exchanges. From 2015, Taipei Film Festival and Festival des 3 Continents began hosting the “Produire au Sud Taipei Workshop”, organized by the Bureau of Audiovisual and Music Industry Development, Ministry of Culture. Each year, the Workshop selects six film proposals for development to cultivate the potential for international co-production between new generations of producers and filmmakers from Taiwan and neighboring regions.
The position of Taipei Film Festival is to support the creation of Taiwanese films, promote international film exchange, expand viewership, and deepen film education.
As one of the most important film festivals in Asia, Taipei Film Festival builds closer relationships with Asian independent filmmakers and film industries through film screenings, activities, workshops and other forms of cooperation. It is a platform for connecting filmmakers, the film industry and audiences that maintains flexibility for innovation and change, preserving its potential to be a fresh and cutting-edge film festival.