China unveils nominees for Golden Rooster Awards, to surprising Jibes

China has published the list of nominees for its next Golden Rooster Award, a set of government-approved film industry awards that it wants to be seen as rivaling the Taipei-based Gold Horse Award, historically considered the “Chinese Language Oscars”.

The winning roosters will be announced at a film festival that runs from December 28 to 30 in the port city of Xiamen in the coastal Fujian province, a short boat ride from Taiwanese soil. Established in 1981, the event was previously held every two years until China’s break with the Golden Horse Awards occurred in 2018 following a pro-Taiwan independence acceptance speech. and encourages Roosters to become an annual event.

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This year’s twenty different Rooster Awards will honor films screened in theaters between July 1, 2020 and July 15, 2021. As the event is supported by the Chinese Propaganda Department, only local and foreign titles have received official approval. censorship will be taken into account.

“As we all know, the Golden Rooster Awards are not authoritative – it wouldn’t be a stretch to call them the Golden Broomsticks. I’m still yearning and claiming the Golden Horse Awards across the strait,” read the one of the best comments on Weibo’s post announcing this year’s Rooster nominees.

“Finally, the continental awards most apt to reflect artistic merit have also become ‘ideological propaganda awards’,” lamented another, while others jokingly referred to the five-year plan for cinema recently released by the country, which states that awards at national film festivals should be balanced and impartial.

In order to bolster its lackluster international profile, the Roosters introduced a new category for Best Foreign Language Film this year. The nominees for his first tour are Anthony Hopkins with “The Father”, the Russian-Belarusian WWII German-language drama “Persian Lessons”, the animation “Wolfwalkers”, the Italian film “Pinocchio” and the Thai drama ” Good year.

In other categories, the rate of propaganda reigns.

The “main melody” propaganda headlines “The Pioneer”, “Island Keeper”, “Chinese Doctors” and “My People, My Homeland”, as well as the family drama “My Sister” and Zhang YimouThe snowy thriller “Cliff Walkers” (aka “Impasse”).

Director Jia Ling’s box office hit “Hi Mom”, Inner Mongolia’s heart-wrenching equestrian drama “Harhuu”, Tibetan drama “Wind” and children’s film “Little Canned Men” are in the running for Best First Picture .

Nominees for Best Actor include TFboy idol of “Better Days” fame Jackson Yee (“A Little Red Flower”), Guo Xiaodong (“My Father”), Yu Hewei (“Dead End”), Zhang Yi ( “Impasse”) and Liu Ye (“Guardian of the Island”).


Nominees for Best Actress include rising stars Liu Haocun (“A Little Red Flower”), Zhang Xiaofei (“Hi, Mom”), Zhang Zifeng (“My Sister”), Liu Mintao (“May Life Be Beautiful”) ).

Zhang’s “Cliff Walkers” and “1921”, a film created to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party, lead the pack with nominations in six categories each.

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