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Asian Cinema Education - about the project

Sixteen in-depth lectures prepared by experts in Asian cinema, interactive online courses devoted to the key aspects of film criticism and journalism, and a chance to become a member of the International People’s Jury – this is the proposal created by four European festivals specializing in Asian cinema.

Asian Cinema Education presents sixteen remarkable lectures, introduces interactive online courses focusing on different aspects of Asian film criticism and journalism, and was giving a chance to become a member of the international jury.

Asian Cinema Education is an invitation to a journey through contemporary Asian cinema and an encouragement to learn how to talk and write about it. The platform was created to fill in the blanks in the knowledge of modern Asian cinema. This is a unique opportunity for all Asian film lovers and future film critics to debate the key phenomena in the cinemas of South and Southeast Asia hand-in-hand with experts and film organizers.

Implemented between 2019 and 2021  project was initiated by film festivals promoting Asian culture in the EU: Five Flavours Asian Film Festival from Poland, CAMERA JAPAN Festival from Holland, Udine Far East Film Festival from Italy, and Helsinki Cine Aasia from Finland. The organizations used to be a part of the informal Network of Asian Film Festivals in Europe (NAFFE). Their mission is not only to create a gripping film program, but also to infect the audiences with the passion for Asian cinema by creating an appealing educational offer. Thanks to the debates, workshops, and lectures held at the festivals, the viewers gain new skills and widen their knowledge of cinema and other cultures. The educational activities accompanying the festivals are incidental in nature, but their informality, openness and the lack of registration is a source of great value. They give the viewers a chance to participate casually, without obligations or consequences. The spontaneous participation often turns into a passion, a desire to investigate film themes, and to learn about the culture and sociopolitical situation in Asian countries.

Asian Cinema Education is a project which aims to include the educational offer in the year-round festival activities, allowing the audiences to participate in open, expert lectures on Asian cinema all at any time throughout the year. It is also an opportunity to participate in free courses on film journalism and criticism, and to join a festival Jury.

Asian Cinema Education three main components
Lectures: Once upon a time in Asia. A tour through East and Southeast Asian Cinema

Sixteen fascinating international meetings devoted to various aspects of Asian cinemas are a real treat for film art enthusiasts. They invite you to dive into the nuances of Asian films and discover their sociocultural contexts, aesthetic traditions, relations between films, daily lives, and the current events taking place in Asia. The specialists associated with Five Flavours Asian Film Festival, Udine Far East Film Festival, CAMERA JAPAN Festival, and Helsinki Cine Aasia talk about Japanese horror films, the success of the Chinese film industry, the auteur cinema of Thailand, the fascinating aspects of anime, and the contemporary cinema of India.

Asian cinema: How to talk and write about it? An International Online Course in Film Journalism and Criticism

This is the first educational activity of the kind available online, without any restrictions. Its creators believe that it is meant to be a wonderful, fascinating journey, inspiring the participants to continue their professional popularization of Asian cinema, which is still not receiving enough attention worldwide.

The series of webinars consists of 40 webinars divided into three independent thematic parts. Part one is devoted to the analysis and interpretation of Asian films and longer written forms. Part two focuses on journalistic skills needed while working for a film festival. Part three is a fascinating journey in time, the history of film journalism on Asian cinema.

International People’s Jury

Asian Cinema Education also offered a chance for a once-in-a-lifetime adventure – becoming a member of the 15. Five Flavours  Asian Film Festival's International People's Jury. The Jury was composed of twelve Asian cinema enthusiasts from Poland, Italy, Holland, and Finland. The Jury members selected the best film of the New Asian Cinema section. But Jury debates and festival meetings were not all. During the eight-day stay in Warsaw, the jurors  could widen their film horizons, improve their writing and editing skills, learn about various aspects of organizing a film festival and participate in the intense festival life. 


Project leader
Five Flavours Asian Film Festival, Poland

Five Flavours is a film festival presenting cinema from East and Southeast Asia as well as giving an opportunity to discover Asian culture, discuss art, politics and challenges of the contemporary world. The screenings are accompanied by in-depth discussions, lectures and meetings with filmmakers, which aim to present the contemporary face of various Asian cultures in the broadest possible manner. Five Flavours is also a VOD platform, operating in the rhythm of cyclical programs, which enables access to Asian cinema to people from all over Poland. Film screenings are considered an educational tool, broadening horizons, building intercultural dialogue and raising awareness of the problems of the contemporary world.

Next edition: November 2022.


Project partners
CAMERA JAPAN Festival, Netherlands

CAMERA JAPAN is a Japanese cultural festival organised in Rotterdam every year since 2006. The main focus is on film, but it also explores the visual arts, music, dance, fashion, architecture, food, and much more. Every autumn, the festival takes a selection of films from the programme to Amsterdam for a weekend of screening the best, the weirdest, and the most unexpected cinema from Japan.

Next edition: September 22 - October 2, 2022.



Udine Far East Film Festival, Italy

First opening its doors in Udine on the 10th of April 1999 and going on to become the main European outpost for Asian cinema, the Far East Film Festival has always been home to authentic legends like Jackie Chan and Joe Hisaishi, cult directors like Johnnie To and Takashi Miike, stars, divas and key players. Even the terrible 2020 couldn't stop it – it just moved online. Inclusive and pop-culture-centric, the FEFF doesn't end after the 9 days of the festival but continues throughout the year with film and TV distribution, home video and even streaming, with the Fareastream digital platform.

Next edition: April 22 - 30, 2022.



Helsinki Cine Aasia, Finland

Helsinki Cine Aasia, established in 2012 by four women, who all have studied in Asia and mastered at least one Asian language, aims to present contemporary East Asian and Southeast Asian Cinema to Finnish audiences. The festival wants to widen the concept of Asian cinema in Finland by representing new filmmakers, new styles of filmmaking, and new topics in film, and to show the variety and vibrancy of current filmmaking in the region. The festival’s focus is in feature-length fiction, but also documentaries, short films and animations are included in the program. The film program is enriched by guest filmmaker talks and  discussion events with specialists which aim to highlight the social, political, historical and aesthetic qualities of particular films. Festival accompanying events include live Asian dance performances and an Asian music club evening.

Next edition: May 5 - 8, 2022.



Financial support

Asian Cinema Education is part of the international partnership project "Festival as a Form of Education" implemented with the support of the European Union within Erasmus + programme 2018-2021.

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