Posted By Raj Singh on 11/02/2017 in Community

Reel Asian Festival this year has a plethora of treasures to offer!

Reel Asian Festival this year has a plethora of treasures to offer!

Reel Asian brings inspiring voices, compelling stories and cinematic treasures to this year's edition! Festival announces full programming lineup including Brotherhood of Blades II, Bad Genius, In Your Dreams, My Dear Art, among others.

Festival runs November 9 to 18, 2017

Public tickets on sale today at

The Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival (Reel Asian), presented by National Bank, today announced its complete programming lineup for the 21st edition. Returning programmes includes Marquee, Vista, Pulse, Reel Asian X, Wee Asian and Reel Ideas. This year’s festival consists of 81 titles from China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Philippines, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, United States, Canada, Belgium and Germany. The Reel Asian Film Festival will take place November 9 to 18, 2017.

“This year’s programming is a celebration of the wealth of diverse stories in filmmaking,” said Savine Wong, Interim Executive Director, Reel Asian. “We are extremely proud of the creators, panelists and media influencers whose films, events, exhibits and industry sessions make up this year’s festival. All of their work is sure to spark meaningful conversations on Asian representation in the arts.”


Welcome the stars of the red carpet who are master storytellers that perfect the craft of story, design, acting, and adaptation. The Marquee programme includes the previously announced Opening and Closing Night Galas, as well as the Centre piece Presentation IN YOUR DREAMS, a poignant love story between a 16-year-old who lives with his drunkard father and a teacher living with her cheating husband starring acclaimed Hong Kong actress Carina Lau and promising newcomer Ng Siu Hin.

The Marquee lineup also includes the suspenseful thriller BAD GENIUS, the story of a genius high school student who makes money by cheating tests; THE POSTERIST, a documentary chronicling the director's quest to find the iconic artist Mr Yuen Tai-Yung; BROTHERHOOD OF BLADES II: THE INFERNAL BATTLEFIELD, the long-awaited prequel to the 2014 hit BROTHERHOOD OF BLADES, starring Chang Chen and Yang Mi; sabotage, bribery and all out warfare can be expected in TEIICHI: BATTLE OF SUPREME HIGH, director Akira Nagai’s adaptation of Usamaru Furuya’s manga about Japan’s young elite battling for the student council presidency; BLADE OF THE IMMORTAL, based on Hiroaki Samura’s hugely popular manga, Takashi Miike brings his 100th film and revisits the jidaigeki genre he previously mastered.


Look beyond the horizon, below the surface, outside the box. Dare to explore with filmmakers as they take you through their worlds of animation, fiction, and documentary, reflecting on connections with their community and their culture. The lineup includes the animated ultra realistic HAVE A NICE DAY, an action-packed crime caper set in an urban Chinese city where gangsters, opportunists and lovers are all searching for the missing treasure while also questioning the true purpose of their hunt; JESUS IS DEAD captures a lovingly unique microcosm of familial discord, loyalty and affection, all packed tightly into an extra-mini minivan; MASALA CHAI offers a warm glimpse into the personal struggles of some of India’s most common and relied-upon vendors; THE MAINOUR & THE EYE WITNESS, a dark comedy crime film starring South Indian superstar Fahad Faisil that exemplifies the charm of Malayalam storytelling—relaxed, unpredictable and wholly delightful.

GOOK follows two Korean American brothers who befriend a street-wise African American girl during the Rodney King verdict and riots while trying to defend their father’s struggling shoe store; THE LAST VERSE chronicles a love story set against the subtle backdrop of the elections and government politics of Taiwan from the early 2000s onward; filmed over the course of two years in artistic hubs including Taiwan, Hong Kong, mainland China, Singapore, Italy, and the UK, MY DEAR ART takes viewers behind the scenes into the art world; MADE IN VIETNAM, a deeply moving documentary chronicling filmmaker Thi Vo’s journey to search for his father who was left behind in Vietnam years ago when Thi and his mom immigrated to Canada as a child; set in the Southern Philippines.

WOMEN OF THE WEEPING RIVER tackles the seemingly untouchable struggles faced by armed clan conflicts in Mindanao, from the perspectives of the women caught in the middle; A PIECE OF PARADISE is an intimate portrait of three Filipina women as they persevere to build their lives as immigrants and foreign domestic workers in Toronto, Canada; examining the fallout since the release of the 2009 documentary THE COVE, A WHALE OF A TALE dives into the political fray raging around the issue of whale hunting in Taiji, Japan.


Wee Asian is back for its second year! Kids can explore the art of moviemaking and fuel their creativity through films, crafts, and dance from the next generation of media makers. Takes place November 11 and 12 at the TIFF Bell Lightbox Green Room. This event is free.


Content creation is both an art and a business. Immerse in the community where creative and industry minds come together through panels and artist talks and look at what’s ahead for Asian

cinema in Canada and around the world. the goal of the programme is to provide local emerging talent, visiting delegates and established filmmakers a chance to connect with one another and explore multiple facets of Toronto’s entertainment industry. Reel Ideas is an extension of Reel Asian’s ongoing mandate to nourish the growth of Asians in the arts.

PULSE (Shorts Programme)

Great things come in small packages. The eclectic short film programmes have something for

everyone. Laugh, cry, sing, and shout with these powerful bursts of cinema.

This year’s Pulse programming includes:

Been Here So Long - 2017 marks the 150th year of the Confederation of Canada. With funding from the Ontario 150 program and in partnership with Vtape, Reel Asian asked various young artists to rework and reimagine archival footage and home videos based on and inspired by Asian Canadian histories within the province.

Additional Pulse programming:

  • Food for Thought: Short Eats
  • Intimate Labours
  • Pulse of Taiwan
  • Unsung Voices 6
  • Field of Touch
  • The Hand That Feeds
  • Cue-to-Cue

Reel Asian celebrates 21 years of showcasing the best in contemporary Asian cinema, providing a public forum for Asian media artists and inciting the growing appreciation for Asian cinema in Canada. Tickets go on sale today on

The Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival gratefully acknowledges the support of Presenting Sponsor National Bank, and government funders the Canada Council for the Arts, Government of Canada, Government of Ontario, Telefilm Canada, Ontario Trillium Foundation, Ontario Arts Council, Ontario Media Development Corporation, Toronto Arts Council and the Business for the Arts.

About Reel Asian

The Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival (Reel Asian), presented by National Bank, is a unique showcase of contemporary Asian cinema and work from the Asian diaspora. As Canada’s largest Asian film festival, Reel Asian® provides a public forum for Asian media artists and their work, and fuels the growing appreciation for Asian cinema in Canada. This year’s festival runs in November 2017 in Toronto and North York.

Reel Asian will be showcasing special projects featuring prominent artists, content creators, up-and-coming filmmakers and will also include the “Reel Ideas” program for creative minds in the industry to connect. Works presented at Reel Asian include films, videos, and presentations by East, South and Southeast Asian artists in Canada, the U.S., Asia and all over the world.

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