Yan Shaofei (R), General Secretary of the China Film Association, receives an honorary award from Greek director Kostas Ferris at the Chinese Film Festival 2019 in Athens, Greece, on May 5, 2019. Athens hosts the Chinese film festival this week as part of efforts to further strengthen Sino-Greek cultural ties. (Xinhua/Marios Lolos)
ATHENS, May 5 (Xinhua) -- Athens hosts a Chinese film festival this week as part of efforts to further strengthen Sino-Greek cultural ties.
Movies can help open a new window to facilitate understanding and cooperation between the two countries and peoples, Greek and Chinese artists said during the opening event on Sunday evening.
The festival which is organized by the China Film Association and the Hellenic Film Association, opened with the screening of the film "A cool fish" directed by Rao Xiaozhi, who attended the event.
Each evening until May 8 the Greek audience will have the chance to see a total of four Chinese films released in 2018 and 2019.
"Today Greece and China are enjoining a very good relationship and we are coming closer and closer and we are hoping that not only business ties and economic ties should flourish, but cultural ties and people to people relations will be more intensified," Chinese Ambassador to Greece Zhang Qiyue told Xinhua.
China encourages such film exchanges and co-productions, because through films one can see the changes in a society and discover common values, she explained.
"We are welcoming our Chinese colleagues and we are pledging to do whatever possible to make our dreams come true together," director Kostas Ferris said addressing the opening event, on behalf of the Hellenic Film Association.
"I sincerely hope that in the future we will see Greek films in the Chinese film market," said on his part, Yan Shaofei, Secretary of the China Film Association, stressing that artists have a duty to help to build bridges of communication between the two countries and peoples.
"I want to thank the Chinese Film Association for making my movie as the opening film for the China-Greece film festival. I am hoping the Greek audience can enjoy my film, learn about how the ordinary people live in China through this film and think about if there are also similar people living in Greece, who are struggling to live their dreams in ordinary life...I hope my film can bring people hope," Rao Xiaozhi said to Xinhua.
"This Chinese opening (to the world) will be an opportunity for Greek film production. Greece provides beautiful scenery. Chinese seem to love it. It is a very interesting win-win situation," Greek director Andonis Kioukas said.