SHANGHAI, June 14 (Xinhua) -- Shanghai on Saturday opened its film festival, an international event attended by more than 400 celebrities and specialists from the global film industry.
Hollywood star Nicole Kidman received an award for outstanding contribution at the opening ceremony, held Saturday night at Shanghai Grand Theater.
Actor and director Jiang Wen received an award for his outstanding contribution to Chinese films. Jiang has worked in the industry for 30 years.
This year's festival, the 17th since it was initiated in 1993, focuses on Asian and Chinese language films and rising stars, with a heavy emphasis on multipolar exchanges, said Weng Tiehui, deputy mayor of Shanghai and chairman of the festival's organizing committee.
Weng, while addressing the opening ceremony, said the organizers are striving to turn the festival into a huge stage for new talent and new works, in an effort to expand its influence in the global film industry.
The organizers played a Chinese movie, a 1960s production "Stage Sisters" about two Chinese opera artists, as the opening film.
China's international star Gong Li said she hoped the audience would all appreciate films "with eyes and hearts".
The nine-day event was attended by other celebrities including Hugh Grant John and Woo Yu-Sen.
China is one of the world's largest film market, with 21.7 billion yuan (about 3.5 billion U.S. dollars) of box office revenue last year.