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King of the Cruise by Sophie Dros

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Dutch films at Shanghai IFF

23 July 2020

Several films from the Netherlands have been selected for the upcoming edition of the Shanghai International Film Festival. The 23rd Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) opens 25 July, more than a month after it was originally scheduled. 

The Festival programme features two Dutch documentaries: King of the Cruise and Sidik and the Panther.

King of the Cruise by Sophie Dros world premiered at the 2019 International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) and was also part of this year's CPH:DOX and DOK.fest Munich. The documentary offers a peek into the decadent and bizarre world of a cruise ship, starring an attention-seeking Scottish baron on a mission to be seen. The film is produced by Halal Docs and international sales are handled by Dogwoof.

Director Reber Dosky's Sidik and the Panther, produced by Dieptescherpte, also world premiered at IDFA and was subsequently selected for DOK.fest Munich. The documentary is about Sidik, who for 25 years has been searching for a Persian leopard in the mountains of Kurdistan. Sidik believes his homeland will survive once the leopard returns. Sales are handled by Journeyman Pictures.

SIFF also presents Halina Reijn's debut feature Instinct to Chinese audiences. The film tells the story of an experienced psychologist working in a penal institution. She starts an affair with a serial rapist who appears to be ready to return to society. Instinct had its world premiere at the 2019 Locarno Film Festival where it won the Variety Piazza Grande Award and a Special Mention for Best First Feature, after which it played at numerous other prestigious festivals including the Toronto International Film Festival, Chicago, Palm Springs, Les Arcs and Miami. Instinct is produced by Topkapi Films, in co-production with Man Up and international sales are handled by Films Boutique.

Lastly, The Barefoot Emperor, a Dutch minority co-production is screening at Shanghai. It is directors duo Jessica Woodworth and Peter Brosens' (Belgium) sequel to their highly successful Last King of the Belgians. The Barefoot Emperor celebrated its world premiere at Toronto and has been touring the festival circuit since, among which PÖFF Tallinn Black Nights, Warsaw, Cairo and Palm Springs. The film is co-produced by Topkapi Films, sales: Be for Films

All above mentioned films have been supported by the Netherlands Film Fund.

The Shanghai International Film Festival was postponed due to the corona virus pandemic. The Festival will be held both offline and online and the event will host theatre and outdoor screenings as well as online screenings. SIFF takes place without foreign guests this year, as China continues to bar the entry of almost all foreigners and only a small number of international flights are allowed in and out of the country. Chinese cinemas had been shut since January and reopened Monday 20 July.

The 23rd Shanghai International Film Festival takes place 25 July - 8 August: www.siff.com



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