| Updated at: 1527 PST, Saturday, November 20, 2010|
TAIPEI: Stars from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan are gathering for this year's Golden Horse Film Awards, the "Oscars" of Chinese-language cinema.
Chinese actress Xu Fan, Taiwan's starlet Lin Chi-ling and heartthrob actor Ethan Juan are among the performers due to walk down the red carpet on Saturday, ahead of a gala ceremony in Taoyuan, northern Taiwan.
Hong Kong director Teddy Chen of "Bodyguards and Assassins" is also expected to join the film's two leading men, Chinese veteran actor Wang Xueqi and Nicholas Tse of Hong Kong, at the ceremony, organisers said.
Chen's martial arts flick, set in the waning days of the Qing dynasty in the early 20th century, is a top contender with nine nominations, including best picture, best director, and best leading actor for Wang.
His rivals for the top acting honour are fellow Chinese Ni Dahong ("Judge") and Qin Hao ("Spring Fever") as well as Juan, one of Taiwan's most popular young actors acclaimed for his role in the gangster film "Monga".
From Hong Kong, Golden Horse-winning actor Tony Leung Ka-fai and kung fu master Sammo Hung, who has two nods for best action choreography, will also lend their star power to the show.
The cream of Taiwanese cinema is represented by director Chang Tso-chi, whose family drama "When Love Comes" is vying in 14 categories covering best picture, best director, and the outstanding Taiwanese film of the year.
Chang is favoured by critics to win best director over Chen ("Bodyguards and Assassins"), Chung Mong-hong ("The Fourth Portrait") and Liu Jie ("Judge").
Also up for the best picture award are Chinese legal drama "Judge" and two Taiwanese independent films -- "The Fourth Portrait" and "Seven Days in Heaven".
China's Xu Fan ("Aftershock"), Tang Wei ("Crossing Hennessy") and Lu Liping ("City Monkey") will battle each other as well as Taiwan's Sylvia Chang ("Buddha Mountain") for best leading actress.
Critics believe Xu has an upper hand for her intense and touching performance in the film about a devastating earthquake in 1976, although Tang, a Golden Horse best new performer winner in 2007, is still a threat.
Tang won the award for playing a spy who betrayed her country in Taiwanese director Ang Lee's erotic thriller "Lust, Caution" but the same role reportedly angered mainland authorities and caused her to be blacklisted for two years.
More than 30 films are competing for the 47th edition of the Golden Horse Awards, which are styled after the US Academy Awards but are decided by a jury along the lines of the Cannes film festival.