| Updated at: 1450 PST, Thursday, December 16, 2010|
DUBAI: The seventh edition of the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) has started in the modern city of the gulf oil-rich United Arab Emirates, which will unveil 157 films from 57 nations, including a large portion for Chinese movies.
The event kicked off on Saturday and will run until Dec. 19.
International film stars like Sean Penn have announced their coming. Penn, usually known as an actor of thoughtful action movies such as "Colors" "The Translator" or "Mystic River" will be honored with an award for his life achievement, shows a new production of his own called "Into the wild."
With its theme "Bridging Cultures, Meeting Minds," however, the DIFF does not highlight the usual Hollywood-style glamour movies, but roles out the red carpet to mostly young directors, giving them a chance to leave an impression to a multinational audience and further develop their careers.
Among the gala screenings, the Chinese-Taiwanese martial-art movie "Reign of Assassins" will be shown, produced by Hong-Kong- based John Woo and Chao-Bin Su from Taipei.
In the Asia-Africa film block, another Chinese movie will bring the Far East closer to the Middle East: "The Piano in a Factory" was directed by Meng Zhang, who graduated at the Central Academy of Drama in Beijing. As a director of the Changchun Film Studio, he made his directorial debut with "Lucky Dog" in 2007.