About Us

The Academy of film launched the first GUFA in November 2018, and has received 1,841 short films from 99 countries and regions globally.

Being envisioned as the “University Oscars”, GUFA is well-recognized as the most-celebrated international student event ever undertaken in Hong Kong.

Over the 3-days event from November 7 – 9, 2018, more than 400 participants from across the world comprising students, academic scholars and film industry professionals joined a myriad of activities. The activities included screenings of 140 shortlisted creative student film productions which has entered into the final of the 5 film categories, 4 master classes given by industry heavyweights and a pitching session in rewarding students with outstanding story ideas.

Among all, the Opening Ceremony as well as the Award Presentation Ceremony were the highlights and overwhelmed by over 1,000 guests altogether. GUFA connected local and international, bringing together not only members of the Hong Kong community, but also film talents and practitioners from all over the world.

Mission

GUFA strives to encourage and recognize emerging filmmakers among university students, foster creative exchange among film students around the world, and build synergy between regional young talents and international creative industry. To achieve the mission, GUFA offers a global platform, for showcasing talent, exchanging ideas and fostering network.

About the Organizer

HKBU School of Communication

The School of Communication at Hong Kong Baptist University was founded in 1968. It provides a comprehensive range of programmes in communication studies at both the undergraduate and postgraduate level. The School maintains close connections with Hong Kong's media and creative industries. With a long history plus a strong alumni and industry network, many of the most senior positions in communication-related industries are occupied by its alumni with outstanding accomplishments.

HKBU Academy of Film

The Academy of Film is dedicated to the provision of cinematic-arts and creative media education to nurture young talents into professionals who can contribute to the local and global arts and cultural industries. For the last four decades, it has been the chief provider of cinema, television and media education in Hong Kong. It is currently Hong Kong’s flagship film school in terms of its size, breadth of programmes, distinguished alumni and strong industry connections.

Advisory Board Members
Sopawan BOONNIMITRA
Filmmaker and photographer
Thailand
Roger S CHRISTIANSEN
Television Director
United States
Prof. Chris BERRY
Professor of Film Studies, King’s College London
United Kingdom
Elizabeth DALEY
Dean of the USC School of Cinematic Arts (SCA)
United States
Max HOWARD
Animation Producer
United States
Yizhong LI
Professor
China
Piyush ROY
Author and Filmmaker
India
Nan Sun SHI
Film Producer
Hong Kong
Johnnie TO
Film Director
Hong Kong
Tim YIP
Film Art Director and Designer
Hong Kong
Sopawan Boonnimitra is an independent filmmaker with over 15 years in the field of film and arts, both internationally and nationally. She started her career in film as an assistant director for a feature film and continued to be involved in cinema. In the last ten years, she has been involved in visual arts as both a curator and an artist. She was a research curator for Guangzhou Triennial 2012 and artist in residence at BAK in Utrecht. She is currently head at Department of Motion Pictures and Still Photography at Chulalongkorn University and has a Ph.D. in Visual Arts from Lunds University. Her first feature film, "The Isthmus" (2013), was selected for the New Currents Section at the Busan International Film Festival. The film has been screened at various international film festivals. She is currently working on her second film, a feature-length documentary, focusing on first years of education. It recently has been selected for Docs by the Sea, an international documentary forum for creative documentary projects.
Prof. Roger S. Christiansen is a well-known Hollywood sitcom director, member of the American Directors Guild, and the world's top director. He has more than 20 years of experience in Hollywood shooting and has participated in the production of hundreds of sitcoms. He is an experienced film and television wizard who takes care of directors, photography and editing. His directorial style is gentle, whether it is a big star or a newcomer, actors of any age and nationality can communicate well with Director Roger S. Christiansen. The sensational "Friends" series not only earned him the highest honor in American TV - the Emmy Award, but also made the Chinese audience know him. Since then, he has directed "Hannah Montana", "iCarly", "Girlfriend" and many other world-renowned TV dramas. In the past 30 years, as a director, Prof. Roger S. Christiansen has also taught at many famous universities around the world, including Columbia University, the University of Southern California School of Film Arts, American National Drama, and Beijing Film Academy.
Chris Berry is Professor of Film Studies at King's College London. In the 1980s, he worked for China Film Import and Export Corporation in Beijing as a translator. His curating work includes the 2011 Cultural Revolution in Cinema season in Vienna (with Katja Wiederspahn) and the 2017 Taiwan's Lost Commercial Cinema: Recovered and Restored project on taiyupian (with Ming-Yeh Rawnsley). Film Festival jury service has included Hawaii, Pusan, Singapore, and, in 2017, the Golden Horse in Taipei. Primary publications include: (with Mary Farquhar) "Cinema and the National: China on Screen" (Columbia University Press and Hong Kong University Press, 2006); "Postsocialist Cinema in Post-Mao China: the Cultural Revolution after the Cultural Revolution" (New York: Routledge, 2004); (co-edited with Luke Robinson) "Chinese Film Festivals: Sites of Translation" (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017); and (co-edited with Koichi Iwabuchi and Eva Tsai) "Routledge Handbook of East Asian Popular Culture" (Routledge, 2016).
Prof Elizabeth M Daley is Dean of the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of South California, one of the most prestigious and influential film schools in the world. She has been holding the Deanship for twenty-five years, the longest tenure of a Dean at USC. She is the inaugural holder of the Steven J Ross/Time Warner Dean's Chair, founding Executive Director of the USC Annenberg Center for Communication (from 1994 to 2005), and is now concurrently serving as Executive Director of the USC Institute for Multimedia Literacy. In 2015, Professor Daley was awarded the degree of Doctor of Letters, honoris causa. As a child, Prof Daley was mesmerized by the stories her mother read or created for her, and her earliest memories that she deeply treasures are of her mother's stories. Her favourite one was about a magical rabbit that lived in a hat. The enduring love of stories that her mother instilled in her has led to her tireless commitment today to ensure her students and faculty have the resources they need to tell exciting stories.
Max Howard created and ran studios for Disney in London, Paris, Orlando and Los Angeles, working on some of Disney’s most memorable films including Who Framed Roger Rabbit, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Lion King. As President of Warner Bros. Feature Animation he oversaw such hit movies as The Iron Giant and Space Jam. At DreamWorks, he was co-executive producer for Spirit, Stallion of the Cimarron. Max is currently executive producer on 100% Wolf, an animated feature film being produced in Australia by Flying Bark Animation Productions. He is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. Max is the recipient of an honorary Doctor of Arts degree from Teesside University in the UK in recognition of his services to the animation industry. Max recently completed his three year assignment in Shanghai as ‘Master’ with the DeTao Group consulting and lecturing throughout China.
Professor, Doctoral supervisor, School of Media, Shanghai Jiaotong University; Vice-Chairman of Society of Film and Television of Chinese Universities; Board Chairman of International Communication Council of Film and Television. His works include "Movies in All Sides", "Research on the Evaluation System of Chinese Movies", "The First Heart of Movies"; he is also the Chief Editor of "Course of Movie and Television Art", "Animation Screenwriter", "Hollywood in Focus (Vol. 1-5)" etc. He serves as jury member of the National University Student Microfilm Competition, International University Student Microfilm Festival (Beijing), Cross-strait Youth Short Film Competition and Shanghai Civil Microfilm Festival.
Dr Piyush Roy is an Indian critic, columnist, author, curator and filmmaker. He has worked at senior reporting positions in leading Indian dailies (The Indian Express, Hindustan Times) and has been published in The Times of India’s Crest Edition, The Speaking Tree, The New Indian Express, The Asian Age, Society magazine and authored an eight-year-long column in Orissa Post, called ‘Sunday Talkies’. He was editor of StarWeek and Stardust. Teaching cinema and culture at UK universities and Indian management and media institutions, his doctorate was on ‘The Aesthetics of Emotional Acting’ (University of Edinburgh, 2017). Author of two fiction works – Never Say Never Again (2007) and Alexander – An Epic Love Story (2007); he made his non-fiction and feature film debut in 2019 with Bollywood FAQ: All That's Left to Know About the Greatest Film Story Never Told (Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, USA), and acclaimed documentary, Pleasures Prejudice & Pride: An Indian Way of Filmmaking. Honoured with “Special Mention” for Best Critic at the 60th Indian National Film Awards (2013) by the President of India, he’s a recipient of UK’s Sir William Darling Memorial Prize (2014). He’s a jury member of Power Brands-Bollywood Film Journalist’s Awards, is an advisory board member to the Global University Film Awards (Hong Kong), and was the Founder-Festival Director of Edinburgh Festival of Indian Films & Documentaries (2016-17). Currently he is Associate Professor in Liberal Studies at Jain University, Bengaluru, India.
Nan Sun Shi was pivotal in the success of Cinema City Studios and Film Workshop Co. Ltd., which she founded with internationally-acclaimed producer and director TSUI Hark. Nansun was a member of the International Jury at the Berlin International Film Festival 2007 and at the Cannes Film Festival 2011. In October 2013, the French Government honored Nansun with the title of Officier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. Nansun received the Best Independent Producer Award – Premio Raimondo Rezzonico at the Locarno International Film Festival 2014, the Golden Mulberry Life Achievement Award at the Udine Far East Film Festival 2015, the Special Achievement Award at the BIFF with Marie Claire Asia Star Awards 2015, and the Berlinale Camera Award (Producer) at the Berlin International Film Festival 2017. Nansun is Vice Chairman of the End Child Sexual Abuse Foundation.
Johnnie To is one of the leading figures of the film industry of Hong Kong. With his caliber, versatility and energy, he has played an instrumental role in promoting the development of the Hong Kong film industry. Besides the achievements in film production and film directing, Johnnie has devoted tremendous efforts to grooming local talents. In 2004, he became a member of the Hong Kong arts Development Council and soon after started chairing the Film and Media Arts Group of the Council. In 2005, he initiated the Fresh Wave Short Film Competition which evolved in 2010 into an international short film festival, further fostering cultural exchange among international filmmakers. In 2014, Hong Kong Baptist University conferred Dr To the honorary doctoral degree for his outstanding professional achievements as well as his remarkable contributions to the film industry.
As a world-renowned visual artist, art director for stage and film and fashion designer, Tim Yip continues to explore and communicate his aesthetic concept “New Orientalism”, which is his interpretation of ancient culture as a means to inspire the future. He works widely in contemporary art, clothing, theatre, film, literature and other creative fields. For “Crouching Tiger, hidden Dragon”, Yip won the Oscar for “Best Art Direction”, becoming the first Chinese to be awarded by the Academy, and the British Film and Television Academy award for “Best Costume Design”, in 2001.
Juries
Laurence BAGOT
Co-founder and President of Narrative Production Company
France
Geoffrey CAMPBELL
Digital Modeling Supervisor
Canada
Mark CHAIT
Film Score Composer
United States
Tze Woon CHAN
Film Director
Hong Kong
Angie CHEN
Documentary Filmmaker
Hong Kong
Yimin CHEN
Senior Lecturer
Hong Kong
Yuen Ting Mabel CHEUNG
Film Director
Hong Kong
Peggy Hsiung-ping CHIAO
Filmmaker, Producer, Educator and Writer
Taiwan
Derek Chiu
Film Director
Hong Kong
Samuel CHOY
Executive Producer
Hong Kong
Elizabeth DALEY
Dean of the USC School of Cinematic Arts (SCA)
United States
Patrick FERLA
Journalist and Writer
Switzerland
Christian FREI
Filmmaker and film producer
Switzerland
Paul GRIFFIN
Animation Supervisor
Canada
Valentine HITZ
Film Director
Austria
Max HOWARD
Animation Producer
United States
Yukie KITO
Film Producer
Japan
Michael KOWALSKI
Interim Dean, Dodge College of Film and Media Arts, Chapman University
United States
Daw Ming LEE
Film Scholar and Producer
Taiwan
Jooick LEE
Film Producer
Korea
Pat LEE
Top comic artist and Creative Director
Canada
Prapatsorn LERTANANTA
Chairman of Design Program, Faculty of Architecture of KMITL
Thailand
Larry LEVENE
Documentary Director, Producer
Spain
Feng PENG
Dean of School of Arts, Peking University
China
Jean PERRET
Dean of the Cinema Dept, Geneva School of Art and Design
Switzerland
Hang Sang POON
Cinematographer and Lecturer
Hong Kong
Piyush ROY
Author and Filmmaker
India
Stanislav SEMERDJIEV
Screenwriter and Executive director of CILECT
Bulgaria
Paul SHEPHERD
Producer and Director
United States
Nan Sun SHI
Film Producer
Hong Kong
Patrick TAM
Film Director
Hong Kong
Johnnie TO
Film Director
Hong Kong
Siegfried ZIELINSKI
Media theorist
Germany
Sopawan Boonnimitra is an independent filmmaker with over 15 years in the field of film and arts, both internationally and nationally. She started her career in film as an assistant director for a feature film and continued to be involved in cinema. In the last ten years, she has been involved in visual arts as both a curator and an artist. She was a research curator for Guangzhou Triennial 2012 and artist in residence at BAK in Utrecht. She is currently head at Department of Motion Pictures and Still Photography at Chulalongkorn University and has a Ph.D. in Visual Arts from Lunds University. Her first feature film, "The Isthmus" (2013), was selected for the New Currents Section at the Busan International Film Festival. The film has been screened at various international film festivals. She is currently working on her second film, a feature-length documentary, focusing on first years of education. It recently has been selected for Docs by the Sea, an international documentary forum for creative documentary projects.
Prof. Roger S. Christiansen is a well-known Hollywood sitcom director, member of the American Directors Guild, and the world's top director. He has more than 20 years of experience in Hollywood shooting and has participated in the production of hundreds of sitcoms. He is an experienced film and television wizard who takes care of directors, photography and editing. His directorial style is gentle, whether it is a big star or a newcomer, actors of any age and nationality can communicate well with Director Roger S. Christiansen. The sensational "Friends" series not only earned him the highest honor in American TV - the Emmy Award, but also made the Chinese audience know him. Since then, he has directed "Hannah Montana", "iCarly", "Girlfriend" and many other world-renowned TV dramas. In the past 30 years, as a director, Prof. Roger S. Christiansen has also taught at many famous universities around the world, including Columbia University, the University of Southern California School of Film Arts, American National Drama, and Beijing Film Academy.
Chris Berry is Professor of Film Studies at King's College London. In the 1980s, he worked for China Film Import and Export Corporation in Beijing as a translator. His curating work includes the 2011 Cultural Revolution in Cinema season in Vienna (with Katja Wiederspahn) and the 2017 Taiwan's Lost Commercial Cinema: Recovered and Restored project on taiyupian (with Ming-Yeh Rawnsley). Film Festival jury service has included Hawaii, Pusan, Singapore, and, in 2017, the Golden Horse in Taipei. Primary publications include: (with Mary Farquhar) "Cinema and the National: China on Screen" (Columbia University Press and Hong Kong University Press, 2006); "Postsocialist Cinema in Post-Mao China: the Cultural Revolution after the Cultural Revolution" (New York: Routledge, 2004); (co-edited with Luke Robinson) "Chinese Film Festivals: Sites of Translation" (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017); and (co-edited with Koichi Iwabuchi and Eva Tsai) "Routledge Handbook of East Asian Popular Culture" (Routledge, 2016).
Prof Elizabeth M Daley is Dean of the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of South California, one of the most prestigious and influential film schools in the world. She has been holding the Deanship for twenty-five years, the longest tenure of a Dean at USC. She is the inaugural holder of the Steven J Ross/Time Warner Dean's Chair, founding Executive Director of the USC Annenberg Center for Communication (from 1994 to 2005), and is now concurrently serving as Executive Director of the USC Institute for Multimedia Literacy. In 2015, Professor Daley was awarded the degree of Doctor of Letters, honoris causa. As a child, Prof Daley was mesmerized by the stories her mother read or created for her, and her earliest memories that she deeply treasures are of her mother's stories. Her favourite one was about a magical rabbit that lived in a hat. The enduring love of stories that her mother instilled in her has led to her tireless commitment today to ensure her students and faculty have the resources they need to tell exciting stories.
Max Howard created and ran studios for Disney in London, Paris, Orlando and Los Angeles, working on some of Disney’s most memorable films including Who Framed Roger Rabbit, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Lion King. As President of Warner Bros. Feature Animation he oversaw such hit movies as The Iron Giant and Space Jam. At DreamWorks, he was co-executive producer for Spirit, Stallion of the Cimarron. Max is currently executive producer on 100% Wolf, an animated feature film being produced in Australia by Flying Bark Animation Productions. He is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts. Max is the recipient of an honorary Doctor of Arts degree from Teesside University in the UK in recognition of his services to the animation industry. Max recently completed his three year assignment in Shanghai as ‘Master’ with the DeTao Group consulting and lecturing throughout China.
Professor, Doctoral supervisor, School of Media, Shanghai Jiaotong University; Vice-Chairman of Society of Film and Television of Chinese Universities; Board Chairman of International Communication Council of Film and Television. His works include "Movies in All Sides", "Research on the Evaluation System of Chinese Movies", "The First Heart of Movies"; he is also the Chief Editor of "Course of Movie and Television Art", "Animation Screenwriter", "Hollywood in Focus (Vol. 1-5)" etc. He serves as jury member of the National University Student Microfilm Competition, International University Student Microfilm Festival (Beijing), Cross-strait Youth Short Film Competition and Shanghai Civil Microfilm Festival.
Dr Piyush Roy is an Indian critic, columnist, author, curator and filmmaker. He has worked at senior reporting positions in leading Indian dailies (The Indian Express, Hindustan Times) and has been published in The Times of India’s Crest Edition, The Speaking Tree, The New Indian Express, The Asian Age, Society magazine and authored an eight-year-long column in Orissa Post, called ‘Sunday Talkies’. He was editor of StarWeek and Stardust. Teaching cinema and culture at UK universities and Indian management and media institutions, his doctorate was on ‘The Aesthetics of Emotional Acting’ (University of Edinburgh, 2017). Author of two fiction works – Never Say Never Again (2007) and Alexander – An Epic Love Story (2007); he made his non-fiction and feature film debut in 2019 with Bollywood FAQ: All That's Left to Know About the Greatest Film Story Never Told (Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, USA), and acclaimed documentary, Pleasures Prejudice & Pride: An Indian Way of Filmmaking. Honoured with “Special Mention” for Best Critic at the 60th Indian National Film Awards (2013) by the President of India, he’s a recipient of UK’s Sir William Darling Memorial Prize (2014). He’s a jury member of Power Brands-Bollywood Film Journalist’s Awards, is an advisory board member to the Global University Film Awards (Hong Kong), and was the Founder-Festival Director of Edinburgh Festival of Indian Films & Documentaries (2016-17). Currently he is Associate Professor in Liberal Studies at Jain University, Bengaluru, India.
Nan Sun Shi was pivotal in the success of Cinema City Studios and Film Workshop Co. Ltd., which she founded with internationally-acclaimed producer and director TSUI Hark. Nansun was a member of the International Jury at the Berlin International Film Festival 2007 and at the Cannes Film Festival 2011. In October 2013, the French Government honored Nansun with the title of Officier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. Nansun received the Best Independent Producer Award – Premio Raimondo Rezzonico at the Locarno International Film Festival 2014, the Golden Mulberry Life Achievement Award at the Udine Far East Film Festival 2015, the Special Achievement Award at the BIFF with Marie Claire Asia Star Awards 2015, and the Berlinale Camera Award (Producer) at the Berlin International Film Festival 2017. Nansun is Vice Chairman of the End Child Sexual Abuse Foundation.
Johnnie To is one of the leading figures of the film industry of Hong Kong. With his caliber, versatility and energy, he has played an instrumental role in promoting the development of the Hong Kong film industry. Besides the achievements in film production and film directing, Johnnie has devoted tremendous efforts to grooming local talents. In 2004, he became a member of the Hong Kong arts Development Council and soon after started chairing the Film and Media Arts Group of the Council. In 2005, he initiated the Fresh Wave Short Film Competition which evolved in 2010 into an international short film festival, further fostering cultural exchange among international filmmakers. In 2014, Hong Kong Baptist University conferred Dr To the honorary doctoral degree for his outstanding professional achievements as well as his remarkable contributions to the film industry.
As a world-renowned visual artist, art director for stage and film and fashion designer, Tim Yip continues to explore and communicate his aesthetic concept “New Orientalism”, which is his interpretation of ancient culture as a means to inspire the future. He works widely in contemporary art, clothing, theatre, film, literature and other creative fields. For “Crouching Tiger, hidden Dragon”, Yip won the Oscar for “Best Art Direction”, becoming the first Chinese to be awarded by the Academy, and the British Film and Television Academy award for “Best Costume Design”, in 2001.