U.S. Film Forward program to tour Taiwan in May

Taipei, April 20 (CNA) The Film Forward program will travel to Taiwan in May, featuring screenings of films and panel discussions in different cities around the island, according to the organizers. The program, entitled Film Forward: Advancing Cultural Dialogue, will feature free screenings of eight films in New Taipei, Taichung and Taitung from May 1-6, the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) said, which is co-organizing the events along with the Sundance Institute and the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities in the United States. The program in Taiwan will focus on the impact of modernization and tradition, the power of alternative education and community awareness, and the role and challenges facing girls and women in society, the organizers said. Films to be shown include "Fruitvale Station," which tells the true story of a 22-year-old Bay Area resident who crosses paths with friends, enemies, family, and strangers on the last day of 2008; "If You Build It," which features one of America's most innovative classrooms; and "The World Before Her," which delivers a provocative portrait of India and its current cultural conflicts during a key transitional era in the country's modern history, organizers said. "These films explore universal themes that we hope will inspire audiences to look at their community and our world in a new way," said Keri Putnam, Executive Director of the non-profit Sundance Institute, in a recent statement. The touring Film Forward program is designed to foster dialogue and cross-cultural understanding. "It uses the power of cinema to promote broader cultural understanding, inspire curiosity and enhance awareness of shared stories and values across generations, religion, ethnicity and borders," the organizers said. The 2014 Film Forward program is expected to be attended by over 10,000 people through screenings in Mexico, Taiwan, China, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Indonesia, as well as the U.S. states of California, Michigan, Mississippi and Pennsylvania, the organizers added. (By Elaine Hou)