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The 5th Vancouver Golden Panda International Film Festival Official Selection lineup announced

VANCOUVER, BC – The 5th Vancouver Golden Panda International Film Festival (GPIFF) today announced its official programming.


This year, GPIFF is bringing a lineup of visual-compelling, heart-touching and thought-provoking films created by young-generation filmmakers to Vancouver’s big screen. Held at Vancity Theatre, the four-day Public Screening running from December 4 – 7, 2017, aims to shine a light on the talent and craft of the world’s up-and-coming filmmakers.  


Compressed by 19 feature-length films and 33 short films from 25 countries and regions, the programming contains 39 narrative films, 5 animations and 8 documentaries.


For more information on the Official Selection lineup, please visit:




From U.S. war photographer and first-time director Kate Brooks’s critically acclaimed documentary The Last Animals to Colombian director César Augusto Acevedo’s 2015 Cannes’ Caméra d’Or-winning film Land and Shade, this year’s GPIFF will introduce 16 feature-length films to Vancouver’s film lovers. The Festival will also welcome the Canadian premiere of Student-Oscar-winner Ari Gold’s second feature The Song of Sway Lake and U.S. filmmaker Damon Cardasis’ LGBTQ-themed, coming-of-age musical Saturday Church.


Agent Walker

Tomas Simonsen | NORWAY/USA | 2017 | 44 minutes

A Russian terrorist group is transporting a nuclear bomb out of the country. John and his team have to do whatever necessary to stop the terrorists from reaching their target.


Alec Toller | UNITED KINGDOM | 2016 | 71 minutes

When an ambitious but inept scout leader, Akela, attempts to turn her scouts into Superscouts, she reignites an old rivalry with her nemesis Katherine, the Eagle Owl of the girl scouts.


Li-Wei Chiu | TAIWAN/CHINA | 2017 | 88 minutes

Accidentally found the city is governed by a magician known as “God” who pretends to have infinite supernatural powers. Fido and Barkley are determined to reveal the truth of the scam, and find their way home.

Being Towards Death

Wang Yi Nan | CANADA | 2016 | 51 minutes

A singularly Canadian rhapsody that weaves together the stark voices of an otherwise unconnected set of Canadians, whose ages range from one continually to 100.

Crested Ibis

Qiao Liang | CHINA | 2017 | 107 minutes

Vince Kang, a reporter in Beijing, has to go back to his hometown to report on a crested ibis, one of the national treasures found unexpectedly. However, this might influence or even hurt various people’s interests. The problem behind the rapid development of the society, which is the severe pollution, gradually comes to light.

Dogs and Fools

Ali Mohammad Ghasemi | IRAN | 2017 | 76 minutes

In the mountainous and forest heights in the north of Iran, in the fog, a big mistake disrupts a love story. The family falls apart, and the older generation cannot help the younger generation.

Land and Shade

César Augusto Acevedo | COLOMBIA | 2015 | 97 minutes

Alfonso is an old farmer who has returned home to tend to his son, who is gravely ill. The landscape that awaits him resembles a wasteland. 17 years after abandoning them, Alfonso tries to fit back in and save his family.

The Last Animals

Kate Brooks | UNITED KINGDOM/USA | 2017 | 92 minutes

From Africa’s front lines to behind the scenes of Asian markets to the United States, the film takes an intense look at the global response to this slaughter and the desperate measures to genetically rescue the Northern White rhinos who are on the edge of extinction.

Longshot: The Brian Upson Story

Tavish Kelpin | CANADA | 2017 | 51 minutes

In 1982, the West Vancouver Highlanders were in the provincial championship game against across town rival. This was the first appearance for West Van and their head coach, Brian Upson, who was fighting a losing battle against cancer and was living on borrowed time. It would also be his last game.  

Mr. Donkey

Zhou Shen, Liu Lu | CHINA | 2016 | 113 minutes

A group of college teachers who build a school in a poor and rural village uses a donkey to deliver water from a very distant area. In order to collect more compensation from the Education Bureau, the teachers fabricate a non-existing figure Lv Deshui (Mr. Donkey). One day, a commissioner from the Education Bureau wants to see Mr. Donkey and attend his lecture. Thus begin the real trouble…

My Love Sinema

Tan Ai Leng | SINGAPORE | 2016 | 93 minutes

Starry-eyed Kheong moves to Singapore to train as a film projectionist. There, he meets Lee who becomes his mentor and also Wei, a young Chinese teacher who finds herself torn between her obligation as a dutiful daughter and her requited feelings towards Kheong.

Operation Sumatran Rhino

Chris Annadorai | MALAYSIA | 2016 | 44 minutes

Operation Sumatran Rhino is a wildlife conservation documentary which showcases the Borneo Rhino Alliance (BORA) in their do or die mission to save Malaysia’s critically endangered Sumatran rhino.

A Paper Marriage

Zhang Hui | CHINA | 2017 | 93 minutes

In order to sell his apartment, university professor Chen Feng has to sign up for a fake marriage with Ye Zi, who is looking to buy an apartment with her fiance. What started as a makeshift plan gradually grows into a real relationship…

Perfume War

Michael Melski | CANADA | 2016 | 95 minutes

A single mom creates an unlikely weapon in the fight for world peace after her best friend, a soldier, is axed in the head by a terrorist. Now she finds herself in the battle of her life challenging corporate giants.

Princess Sparkly Butt and the Hot Dog Kid

Brandon Lane | CANADA | 2017 | 60 min

A tradition-defying Princess discovers that she can control time with her butt. She must use her butt powers for good, not evil, if she hopes to save her planet from totally exploding.

Saturday Church

Damon Cardasis | USA | 2017 | 81 minutes

Living alongside his mother, younger brother, and conservative aunt, Ulysses is also struggling with questions about his gender identity. Ulysses’ journey takes a turn for the better when he is taken to “Saturday Church,” a program for LGBTQ youth. Ulysses manages to keep his two worlds apart, until his double life is revealed.

The Song of Sway Lake

Ari Gold | USA | 2017 | 100 minutes

Music collector Ollie Sway recruits his only friend, a rowdy Russian drifter, to help him steal a 78 record from his own family’s estate. The Song of Sway Lake is a lush romantic drama about the vanished grace of America, and the spell cast by the melodies of the dead.

Torments of Love

Caroline Jules | FRANCE | 2017 | 53 minutes

Myriam and Vanessa planned to stay for a few days in the family house. But Vanessa is not aware that a particular guest is expected for lunch, and when she catches sight of their father coming; a cold and quiet man that she didn’t want to see anymore; it is too late to escape the confrontation.

What is Classic Rock?

Daniel Sarkissian | UNITED KINGDOM/CANADA/USA | 2017 | 101 minutes

While the title of the movie may make its intentions crystal clear, the answer to its question is a lot more complicated.




Short in length but rich in content, GPIFF is proud to introduce 33 brilliant short films coming from across the world. From India’s bustling streets to England’s running tracks, from remote villages in Western China to small Mexican town… Join us this December and embark on an adventure brought to you by the world’s talented and inspiring young-generation filmmakers!


Abdullah’s Wonderland

Liu Mingshan | CHINA | 2017 | 28 minutes

Abdullah’s sister has lost her sight for several years. In order to help his sister, Abdullah starts a journey to find the genie.

All I Want

Venika Mitra | INDIA | 2016 | 7 minutes

In his struggle of buying this mango, the very audacious Ratan, the 7-8-year-old incorrigible and aimless street bum, does whatever he can; and thus begins Ratan’s wild goose chase to get 10 bucks more.


Alberto Viavattene | ITALY | 2017 | 15 minutes

Upon entering room 12, an abusive nurse discovers that one of them has just turned one-hundred years old. There must be a birthday present somewhere… that will change their lives forever.


Seishi Irimajiri | DENMARK | 2017 | 9 minutes

A boy tries to create borders on Earth, however, these borders start moving without his consent, which fills him with rage.

Breakfast With Tiffany

Andrés Molano Moncada | COLOMBIA | 2015 | 14 minutes

Rafael and a woman sleep peacefully until the alarm from a cell phone interrupts them. Rafael must sneak without waking her to prepare breakfast for her.


Molly Boughen | UNITED KINGDOM | 2017 | 9 minutes

Through the chaos of a breaking news story, Fiona Butler, a timid weather girl whose voice has been ignored for over 10 years, must fight against the male-dominated studio.


Angie Su | USA | 2017 | 20 minutes

Master cellist, Ansel Evans, has been diagnosed with ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis). As his body shuts down, he makes the difficult decision to minimize the suffering for his closest loved ones by planning one last concert…


Alexander Briere, Jonah Fortin | CANADA | 2017 | 28 minutes

Jackson finds himself trapped in a seemingly endless loop, where his only companion, Charlie, is trying to push him further along.

The Energy Within

Samuel de Ceccatty | UNITED KINGDOM | 2017 | 17 minutes

Set on the red tarmac of Mile End Stadium’s running tracks, The Energy Within tells the story of Julie, a 30-year old woman who dreams of being a pro-athlete.

Father’s Prairie

Francis Ko | CHINA | 2015 | 13 minutes

Father’s Prairie takes you to the world where modern medicine meets with traditional Tibetan medicine (TTM). Through the lenses of a young daughter of a rural M.D. father, Qinghai province delivers heaven-like picturesque sceneries and cultural treasures in spiritual and medical realms.


Nadia Zygouri, Aris Pavlidis | GREECE | 2016 | 7 minutes

Two people are feasting. They are discommoded by flies. Time draws to a close. The rude awakening occurs when they realize where they are currently standing.

The Inuring

James Hughes | UNITED KINGDOM | 2016 | 10 minutes

Ever since their Father passed away three years ago, the rift between the sisters Aleisha and Claudette has grown wider. Aloof to the outbursts and moods of her troubled younger sister, Claudette has instead turned her focus to transforming the once modern home with a vintage decor.

Jue er

Liang Zhefei | CHINA | 2016 | 22 minutes

Jue er, a short documentary, takes a closer look at the behind-the-scenes life of people who make every endeavour to bring Peking opera, a unique art form, to a broader audience.

The Last One

Andrea Banjanin | UNITED KINGDOM | 2015 | 15 minutes

Suddenly, every living thing on the planet disappeared. No warning. No apparent reason. Every human and animal, gone. Except for Matthew.


Matthew Gentile | USA | 2016 | 13 minutes

Former slave Bass Reeves is the first African-American to be deputized by the U.S. Marshal service as a federal peace officer. On his first mission, Bass captures an outlaw who is also an African-American man and former slave. Over the course of their journey, Bass begins to question his own mind regarding the idea of justice and choosing to fight for a law and a country that has never fought for him.

Little Thing

Or Kan tor | ISRAEL | 2016 | 5 minutes

A tiny creature feels useless and abandoned until he discovers his unique talent. Little Thing is a film about music, loneliness and the search for connection.

My Fear

Manfred López Grem | MEXICO | 2017 | 4 minutes

Born with Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita, a rare condition that severely limits his movement, 15-year-old writer, actor Diego Dávalos Amezcua plays himself in this heart-touching, mind-lifting short work, and shows us his world in his native city of Uruapan, Mexico.


Marc Jebelean | AUSTRIA | 2015 | 15 minutes

The world we live in seems corrupt and dull for most of us. But how would it look for someone whose attitude is indestructibly positive? Meet John, the most ordinary man on earth.

The People in the Winter

Liang Shuo | CHINA | 2017 | 18 minutes

To tourists, wandering around beautifully lighted ice sculptures sure is an enjoyable experience, but it may be a different story to the craftsmen. The People in the Winter brings the audience into the unknown world of ice sculpture.

The Pirate Captain Toledano

Arnon Shorr | USA | 2017 | 10 minutes

When the Pirate Captain Toledano interrogates a stowaway on his ship, he finds that the young man is a refugee from the Spanish Inquisition. The Captain must decide whether to make the stowaway a pirate, or to make him walk the plank.

Rabbit Blood

Yagmur Altan | TURKEY/USA | 2016 | 5 minutes

Just an ordinary day at an old mysterious Turkish country house where its residents have an extraordinary way of brewing tea.

The Ravens

Jennifer Perrott | AUSTRALIA | 2016 | 23 minutes

When young Ruby’s father returns unexpectedly from war, his volatile state makes it difficult for the family to reconnect.

Robb’s Problem

Dianna Ippolito | USA | 2017 | 22 minutes  

Robb is used to his dull routine, and the sameness of it all – until one extraordinary day when his world gets turned upside down – the day he meets Mia.


Sergey Nikolaev | RUSSIA | 2017 | 22 minutes

After a quarrel with her boyfriend of Svetlana on the street is faced with a stranger. He invites Svetlana to do something crazy and fly with him away to Santorini. Svetlana rejects the invitation. But you never know when your fate is going to take a turn.

The School Bag

Dheeraj Jindal | INDIA | 2016 | 15 minutes

Farooq, who lives in the small town of Peshawar, Pakistan, wants a new school bag on his birthday. But his mother seems to be unfazed by her child’s plea. Unknown to Farooq, there is something waiting for him…


Manas Shashidharan Jacob | INDIA | 2017 | 19 minutes

Somewhere in the bylanes of Mumbai a girl boards a taxi. With an old taxi driver as a companion, is this just another journey or something much more.


Erik Hirschhorn | USA | 2016 | 16 minutes

Aliza is an aspiring ballerina who must put her dreams of joining the New York Ballet Company on hold as she escapes Nazi-occupied-Poland to protect her husband and young daughter.

The Story of 90 Coins

Michael Wong  | CHINA | 2015 | 9 minutes

How much is a promise worth these days? Ninety coins symbolize ninety days a passionate lover gives himself to convince a girl to marry him. But the romance bubble deflates as reality breaks in with its daily routine, ambiguity, and incomprehension.


Pascal Stervinou | FRANCE | 2016 | 20 minutes

An arrogant businessman is stuck in the elevator of his office building for four days. Follow the Man in Pascal Stervinou’s new thriller Trip and watch how this event will take an unexpected turn and change him forever.

Twice Upon A Time

Vojin Vasovic | SERBIA/MONTENEGRO/HUNGARY/CANADA | 2017 | 14 minutes

Twice Upon a Time, there was a king with split personalities, half of whom wants to become a poet and the other a fearless warrior. They share their conscience, but have opposing wishes and desperately want to get rid of each other.

Under One Small Star

Ziyi Zheng | USA | 2017 | 14 minutes

Lily Lee had reached the end of her rope. She decides to kill herself by burning the charcoal inside her apartment. When she sets the charcoal on fire, lies down on her bed and gradually loses conscious, she dreams about her dead mother and realizes she doesn’t want to die but she isn’t physically able to move.

What If

Linda Gasser | GERMANY | 2017 | 16 minutes

Big data is omnipresent. Through perfect definition of tempers matching of people became possible. But Achille wants to make it different. He wants to find a partner by himself.

When Looks Speak Volumes

Pascal Schuh| GERMANY, 2017 | 8 minutes

Wolfgang normally works as a Santa Claus in a department store. One day the parents of a little girl ask Wolfgang to visit their daughter in a hospital. She is ill with cancer. A conversation about death, believe and hope begins.


The 5th Vancouver Golden Panda International Film Festival runs from December 4-10, 2017 in Vancouver, Canada.




Held annually in Vancouver, Canada, the Vancouver Golden Panda International Film Festival (GPIFF) aims to help discover and support international emerging filmmakers, and to foster collaborations in global film industries. A registered non-profit organization, GPIFF was founded in June 2013 by Orient Star Media Inc. and was formerly known as the Golden Panda International Short Film Festival.


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Xueting Zhao

Publicity & Communications Manager