Mexican drama scoops top prize at Beijing Film Festival

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Beijing – Mexican director Bernardo Arellano’s drama about an elderly facing economic hardship, has scooped the best film award at the fifth Beijing International Film Festival.

Comienzo del Tiempo’, or “The Beginning of Time”, tells the story of Antonio and Bertha who fall on hard times when social pensions are stopped, because of a national financial crisis.

Kung fu movie star Jackie Chan presented Arellano with the award at the closing ceremony of the festival on Thursday night in the capital.

France’s Jean-Jacques Annaud won the best director prize for “Wolf Totem”, about a Chinese student sent to live with the nomadic herdsmen of Inner Mongolia.

Artyom Tsypin won the best actor category for role in “A White, White Night” while Yulia Peresild was named best actress for “The Battle For Sevastopol”.[pro_ad_display_adzone id=”10″]

The festival ran under a new adviser, former Venice and Rome film festival head Marco Mueller, who organisers hope will raise the week-long event’s profile.

French director Luc Besson led the festival’s prize-giving jury, which also included Russian director Fedor Bondarchuk, Hong Kong director Peter Chan and . screenwriter Robert Mark Kamen.

China saw its box office revenues grow 34 per cent last year to 4.8 billion dollars.

The Motion Picture Association of said China was cementing its position as the second biggest box office territory after the U.S. and Canada. (Reuters/NAN)