The Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF) has announced that it will host its 46and August 15-21 edition, having previously been forced to postpone due to a rapid rise in Covid-19 cases in the city.
Organizers are planning a hybrid approach of in-person and online screenings for the 17-day festival, similar to the approach taken by HKIFF in 2021 after being completely canceled in 2020 at the start of the outbreak. The full program will be unveiled in July.
HKIFF’s Cine Fan Summer International Film Festival, which usually takes place around the same time in August, will not take place this year to make way for the main event, but is expected to return in 2023.
Originally scheduled to take place from March 31 to April 11, this year’s HKIFF was postponed when the Hong Kong government imposed strict social distancing measures in January to combat a growing outbreak of Omicron – the fifth and worst virus wave to hit the city. Those rules were relaxed this week and cinemas across the city reopened yesterday (April 21) after more than 100 days of closure.
HKIFF also announced that Hong Kong star Aaron Kwok will return as the festival’s ambassador for the fourth consecutive edition. “The past two years have been difficult for everyone due to the Covid-19 pandemic, especially for those working in the film industry,” Kwok said.
“It’s important to stay positive and with the gradual resumption of productions, I see signs of recovery, despite the recent setback with the Omicron outbreak.”