International film festival sees stars of East Asian cinema descend on Coventry

International film festival sees stars of East Asian cinema descend on Coventry

Ngô Thanh Vân and Roger Yuan in action in Once Upon a Time in Vietnam, which premieres at the festival

University news

Thursday 03 October 2013

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A host of stars from the East Asian movie scene will be descending on Coventry later this month for a prestigious international film event.

The East Winds Film Festival – the UK's only major showcase of East Asian cinema outside London and the first of its kind in the Midlands – will take place in Coventry University's state-of-the-art digital 3D cinema at its student centre, The Hub, from Thursday 31 October to Sunday 3 November 2013.

Now in its third year, the festival – which will feature 12 exclusive screenings over four days – is sponsored by Nissan and hosted by Coventry University's award-winning East Asian Film Society in association with Third Window Films, the UK's largest distributor of Japanese film.

A celebration of East Asian film and culture, the festival showcases the work of artists from Hong Kong, China, Japan, Thailand and Vietnam in genres ranging from action and horror through to comedy and romance.

The festival features a special 'East Wind Chills' theme on Halloween, with an exclusive double bill of horror films from Asia.

All of the films being shown throughout the four day festival are receiving either international, European or UK premieres, including the opening night screening on Friday 1 November of Vietnamese actor-director and martial artist Dustin Nguyen's hotly anticipated Once Upon a Time in Vietnam (Vietnamese title: Lửa Phật).

A familiar face to western audiences thanks to his long running role in crime drama 21 Jump Street, and a long list of starring and supporting roles in US film and TV, Nguyen has assembled the cream of the Vietnamese cinema industry to produce a unique fantasy action film.

A landmark in Vietnamese cinema in terms of scale and production values, Once Upon a Time in Vietnam has already been picked up by Lionsgate for a US release later this year and this screening in Coventry marks the European premiere of this epic saga which blends swordplay, science fiction and super-powered martial arts.

The East Winds trailer for Once Upon a Time in Vietnam is available to view on online.

Director and star Dustin Nguyen said:

It is with much pleasure that I present Once Upon a Time in Vietnam in the UK. It has always been a desire for me to have Vietnamese cinema exposed to the rest of the world, and I look forward to interacting with British audiences and sharing our mutual passion for films.

Spencer Murphy, senior lecturer in film and visual culture and organiser of the East Winds Film Festival, said:

I am very proud to confirm that East Winds is returning for its third year at Coventry University. I am also delighted to be working alongside our incredibly supportive festival partners Nissan once more on this wonderful celebration of East Asian film, culture and society.


We have worked harder this year to bring to Coventry a more varied and exciting programme of films to our students and to the wider public, with something to cater for every audience.


I look forward to welcoming viewers to the East Winds Film Festival 2013 to enjoy some unique and compelling films, and as is now tradition, to mingle with the stars, directors and other creative people associated with the films on show.

Nissan's executive vice-president Andy Palmer, who holds an honorary doctorate of technology from Coventry University, will be among the guests at the official opening of the festival.

He said:

Nissan is absolutely delighted to support what is now one of the most important showcases for East Asian cinema in the UK and a very important cultural event for the local community.

The East Winds Film Festival takes place from Thursday 31 October to Sunday 3 November 2013 at The Hub, Jordan Well, in Coventry city centre (CV1 5FB).

A full schedule of films and announcements on special guests appearing at the festival will be announced shortly.