As fans and followers of the Chinese indie film world are well aware, the climate for independent film here in Beijing hasn’t exactly been warm and fuzzy these past few years. Repeated attempts to stymie the Beijing Independent Film Festival — i.e. a friendly annual gathering of filmmakers and scholars watching incredibly long documentaries, discussing cinema, and drinking beer in a few Songzhuang courtyards — have left few with hope for the survival of this small but crucial festival.
For these screenings to be snuffed out is a blow not only to the artists and scholars who gather annually to exchange ideas and catch up on each other’s projects, but also to this rare and inspiring movement of non-mainstream narratives, DIY production, and community-driven collaboration.
Luckily, a few heavy-hitters of the Chinese indie distribution and scholarship world are taking matters into their own hands. The show must go on, even if the venue has to change.
A new project called Cinema on the Edge will showcase the "best of BIFF" in a series of screenings at some of New York City’s most historic and respected film institutions this Fall.
A Kickstarter was launched this week to help bring filmmakers to participate in Q&As in New York. Find tons more info on the series and films involved, and throw some lucre their way if you so wish, here.