It was a mere 30 minutes into the opening screening of the 9th annual Beijing Film Festival when the power cut off. Last year’s festival was also shut down by local authorities. Forced into private venues, prominent festival-goers vented their anger on Weibo:
JiaZhangke: Indeed, films need electricity. I heard that the Bureau of Cinema is merging with the Electric Power Supply Bureau. Okay, I’ll go ahead and learn shadow puppetry tomorrow. They won’t send in the fire brigade, right?
贾樟柯 ： 电影的确是需要电的，传说电影局要和供电局合并办公了，行，哥明天就去学皮影，不会派消防队来吧？
BeijingCuiWeiping: Today the Beijing Independent Film Festival in Songzhuang was forcibly shut down. Independent film is a cinematic tradition. Hollywood absorbs so much from it, transforming it into a force of self-renewal. But in China, “independence” has become a “natural pest,” no matter what the “independent” thing is.
BeijingYellowStallHaoJian: Yesterday’s 9th Beijing Independent Film Festival was a dismal affair. There were several comrades from the “relevant organs” on guard, and the courtyard doors were shut before the opening ceremony. People were only allowed to leave, not to enter. The electricity stopped 30 minutes into Egg and Stone. (The poor director, Huang Ji, had left her kid to her husband and waited there for 6, 7 hours.) From 8 p.m., people enjoyed a courtyard screening without electricity or films. The candle-lit cocktail party was pretty bougie. I bought a few big candles.
北京黄亭子郝建 ： 昨天第九届北京独立影像展很悲催，门口二十多“有关部门”的同志哥护卫，开幕式没开始院子大门就被关，只许出不许进。放《鸡蛋与石头》大约30分钟被停电（可怜导演黄骥把孩子托给老公，守候6、7小时）。到夜间8点，大家在院子里享受没电、没影的影像展。烛光酒会倒是小资了一下，我买几个大蜡烛。
SobbingCrow: The opening ceremony of 9th Beijing Independent Film Festival had its electricity supply cut by the relevant organs. This event enlightens us to the fact that independent film festivals need independent generators.
adtonny: The electricity was cut off at the Beijing Independent Film Festival. This establishes a strong foundation for an Unplugged Film Festival.
WangRan: How can a country like this win the respect of others?
sLanBenbens: The title irks the Communist Party. At the very least it should be called the “Harmonious” Film Festival.
Qiyueqi: I salute all the warriors who believe in tomorrow! // @cinemaChengQingsong: We’re unable to move an inch. // @LiYu: In the harmonious era, we are unable to move an inch. /// @cinemaChengqingsong: The darkness before the dawn. // @BeijingCuiWeiping: BeijingCuiWeiping: Today the Beijing Independent Film Festival in Songzhuang was forcibly shut down.
柒月琦：向所有相信明天的战士致敬！//@电影人程青松: 寸步难行。//@李玉:和平时代，我们寸步难行 ///@电影人程青松:黎明之前的黑暗。 //@北京崔卫平: 今天宋庄北京独立影像展开幕放映电影，遭遇拉闸。
Via CDT Chinese. Translation by Wendy Qian.
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