The Shanghai International Film Festival, China’s largest and most prestigious industry event, was canceled just days before its launch because of the city’s ongoing battle with the latest wave of COVID-19 , the festival announced Monday.
The city of roughly 25 million people, one of the world’s major financial hubs, has been under lockdown for more than two months. City-wide restrictions were lifted last week, but some neighborhoods have been placed back under the tight lockdown as cases continue to emerge.
SIFF officials said the fest, which was scheduled to run from June 10-19, was “postponed” until 2023. It was to be the 25th annual SIFF.
“Given the COVID-19 pandemic, the Organizing Committee of Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) has decided that the 25th SIFF, originally scheduled to take place in June 2022, will be postponed to next year,” festival organizers said in a statement.”
“We would like to express our heartfelt thanks and sincere apologies to people in all sectors of society who care about and support SIFF. If possible, we will plan and hold film exhibitions and themed events in the second half of this year to share the joy brought by cinematic art and film activities.”