THE NEW YORK ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL UNVEILS
LEGENDARY ACTION DIRECTOR BENNY CHAN’S
EXPLOSIVE FINAL FILM
AS THE FESTIVAL CENTERPIECE
DISASTER-FILM MAESTRO KIM JI-HOON’S HOTLY-AWAITED
WILL BE THE CLOSING FILM
The two titles complete this year’s 20th edition lineup,
with over 70 films to screen in person and virtually.
The New York Asian Film Foundation and Film at Lincoln Center have announced two final titles, completing the lineup for the upcoming 20th edition of the New York Asian Film Festival (NYAFF). The festival will be screening over 70 films, both virtually and in person, to audiences in New York and across the country from August 6 – 22, 2021. Tickets are already on sale.
NYAFF is thrilled to present as its festival Centerpiece the international premiere of NYAFF favorite director Benny Chan’s final work, RAGING FIRE. Completed shortly before his untimely death in August 2020, the Hong Kong-Chinese action film stars the inimitable Donnie Yen as Shan, a by-the-book cop whose past returns to haunt him. After a sting operation goes disastrously awry, Shan finds himself pitted against Ngo (Nicholas Tse), a former protégé who has turned criminal mastermind and is out for revenge. Nothing, it seems, can stop him, including his former mentor.
Chan, a NYAFF Centerpiece guest in 2011, also produced Raging Fire along with Yen (NYAFF’s 2012 Star Asia Awardee), the superstar hero of a range of blockbusters, including Shanghai Knights, The Monkey King, Ip Man, and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Chan’s hard-boiled action swan song also reunites Tse (Shaolin Soccer, Beast Stalker, Bodyguards and Assassins) with his Shaolin director.
Raging Fire features a star studded cast that includes Qin Lan (The Last Supper), Ray Lui Leung-wai (Firestorm), Ben Lam (Flash Point) and Simon Yam (PTU, Election). The film also brings together an exciting collective of action directors; Huen Chiu Ku (Kill Bill: Vol. 1, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), Kenji Tanigaki (Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen, the Rurouni Kenshin franchise), and Chris Collins (Ip Man 4), as well as action choreographer Kang Yu (Chasing the Dragon, Special ID) to produce a never before seen action experience on the big screen.
NYAFF is also thrilled to announce that our Closing Film will be the North American premiere of Kim Ji-hoon’s (The Tower, Sector 7) disaster comedy, SINKHOLE, direct from its world premiere at the Locarno Film Festival. One of South Korea’s most hotly anticipated summer tentpoles, the film focuses on a small group of people who must pull together and pool their strengths in a battle against time and gravity, 500 meters underground. Sinkhole runs the emotional gamut, from Korean-style satirical comedy to tense, action-packed survivalist drama.
Led by busy actors Cha Seung-won (Cheer Up, Mr. Lee; Night in Paradise) and Kim Sung-kyun (Nameless Gangster: Rules of the Time, The Divine Move 2: The Wrathful), with beloved comic actor Lee Kwang-soo (Running Man, Busted!) and Kim Hye-jun (Kingdom) rounding out the ensemble cast, Sinkhole entertainingly highlights human tenacity in adverse circumstances, with spectacular, larger-than-life special effects and stunts that are both nail-biting and laughter-provoking.
As previously announced, NYAFF will be honoring a plethora of Asian stars for its 20th edition. Legendary filmmaker Ann Hui will be the recipient of the Variety Star Asia Lifetime Achievement Award. Gordon Lam Ka Tung, one of today’s most versatile and prolific actors in the Hong Kong cinema, will be honored with the Variety Star Asia Award.
A trio of gifted young actors from three different countries have been chosen to receive the Rising Star Asia Award: Bang Min-a from South Korea, Janine Gutierrez from the Philippines, and Sosuke Ikematsu from Japan. The Daniel A. Craft Award for Excellence in Action Cinema will be given to director Yoon Jae-Keun and producers Billy Acumen, Lee So-young and Kim Hyun-suk for their head-spinning Spiritwalker, in which an amnesiac with the crackerjack skills of a highly trained intelligence operative switches bodies every 12 hours.
NYAFF is also launching a new Asian American Focus section this year, with the goal of uplifting and empowering our Asian American communities by showcasing their diverse voices; as well as the new Emerging Voices Narrative Shorts Showcase, creating a space for young filmmakers to screen their work.