Xinhua News Agency
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Film distributors set to defy threats

Agatha Ngai

THE new film by Chinese director Zhang Yimou will be screened in the territory this summer whether or not Beijing gives permission.

The Vehicle of Light film company, which has the right to distribute To Live, said discussions with the promoter on the best time to screen it were under way.

''Showings would not be later than this summer,'' company director Dennis Chan Kwok-sun said.

Sidestepping a question on whether screening would jeopardise co-operation between Hong Kong and China, he said the film, depicting a family during the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution, was not politically sensitive.

However, Cui Songming, deputy head of the cultural and sports department of the Xinhua (the New China News Agency) office, said yesterday Hong Kong's arbitrary screening of the movie would cause problems.

''I've heard that several cuts have been demanded. But if they [the producer and distributor] insist on screening it without approval from Beijing, there would be trouble,'' he said.