Taiwan Film Showcase at 2020 San Diego Asian Film Festival Presents Film “Days” and Drive-In Screening “Get The Hell Out”

The 21st edition of the San Diego Asian Film Festival (SDAFF) will kick off from October 23rd to 31st, 2020, showcasing over 125 films from 24 countries in 34 languages through their online platform, together with 2 drive-in screenings. Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles has collaborated with SDAFF to present the “Taiwan Film Showcase” for the 9th consecutive year. This year, the Taiwan Film Showcase will feature an award-winning film “Days,” and a drive-in screening “Get The Hell Out,” a film that reveals a blood-spattered emotional and interest entanglements in Taiwan’s parliament unleashed by a zombie virus outbreak. In the spirit of Halloween, all audiences are encouraged to wear costumes to join this zombie fest at Zion Market on October 24th at 7 pm (PST).

“Days,” directed by Taiwanese director Tsai Ming-liang, received the Teddy Award at the 70th Berlin International Film Festival and has been selected by this year’s New York Film Festival. As a documentary fiction, it depicts an encounter between a man with an illness and an immigrant worker in exquisite examinations of the two men’s alienation, isolation, and daily routine. The film “Get The Hell Out,” is a dark comedy that has been selected by the Midnight Madness program at the 2020 Toronto International Film Festival. “Get The Hell Out” portrays a satire of Taiwan’s political system with an approach to an absurd zombie plot.

This year’s Taiwan Film Showcase will present 7 features and 4 shorts. In addition to “Days” and “Get The Hell Out,” the line-up of features includes “Nobody,” a story about the later years of an elderly queer woman; “Archiving Time,” a documentary about film preservation and restoration; “Love and Death in Montmartre,” a documentary about the life and work of a lesbian Taiwanese writer, Qiu Miaojin; and “The Reason Why I’m Home,” a film that reflects on the value of kinship and life. The shorts program “Shorts: Taiwan America,” will feature “The Granddaughter Detective,” a short about language barriers brought by generational gaps; “Ahma & Alan,” a short about the self-identification journey of the 2nd generation Chinese immigrants in the United States; “Hello from Taiwan” centers on a family of Taiwanese American young girls and their mother who struggle to overcome family and cultural barriers; and “Smiling Buddha,” a story that raises awareness of Alzheimer’s disease. Director Evans Chan and Ari Larissa Heinrich, the English translators of “Last Words from Montmartre,” will be present for the online Q&A discussion of “Love and Death in Montmartre.” Directors of the 4 shorts will also join the group’s online Q&A after the screening of the “Shorts: Taiwan America” program.

SDAFF was founded by the Pacific Arts Movement in 2000. Each year, the festival brings films from around the world to give audiences unique opportunities to discover international cinema. Since 2012, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles has collaborated with the UCSD Chuan Lyu Foundation for Taiwan Studies and the UCSD Taiwan Studies Lecture Series to present the Taiwan Film Showcase as part of SDAFF and has grown to become the most important exhibition of Taiwanese cinema beyond Asia.

About Taiwan Film Showcase

$40 for “Get The Hell Out”:
$50 for the rest of the 6 features and 4 shorts:

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4th Annual Taiwanese American Film Festival (TAFF) Returns Online on October 24th, 2020
With support from the Ministry of Culture of Taiwan and Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles, Taiwanese American Professionals - Los Angeles (TAP-LA) will present the 4th annual Taiwanese American Film Festival (TAFF) on October 24th, 2020 on the Bingewave Digital Festival platform. This year for the 4th edition, TAFF will feature exclusive North American premiere of the feature film Synapses, an opening industry panel, a keynote speech, and a short film competition. Stay tuned in the comfort of your home for the 4th TAFF!

The closing feature Synapses depicts the repressed life of an elderly veteran suffering from dementia, reflecting family, life, and memory through time, space and generations. The director Chang Tso-Chi has won Golden Horse Award for Best Feature Film twice, for The Best of Times (2002) and When Love Comes (2010). Synapses is the 9th film of Chang that was nominated by the 56th Golden Horse Award in 2019 for Best Director, Best Leading Actress, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Visual Effects. A Q&A will follow the screening with the exclusive participation by the leading actress Lu Hsueh Feng and the producer Kao Wen Hung, sharing with the audience the story of the film and the current development of Taiwanese films.

The Festival also features a short film competition of 13 short films which part of them have been selected by the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, the Asian American International Film Festival, and CAAMFest. Jurors will select winners for the Grand Jury Award, the Cultural Spotlight Award, and the Audience Award with prize ranging from $1,000 to $2,000. Awards will be presented live. The festival will also host an opening industry panel with Joan Huang (producer), Jay Chern (Taiwanese director), and Christopher Au (director), and a keynote speech by Taiwanese American actress Lynn Chen for sharing the industry career development of Taiwanese American filmmakers.

TAFF is the only showcase of films and media works by Taiwanese American and Taiwanese filmmakers in the US. The festival organizing team, composed of filmmakers and entertainment industry professionals, are all Taiwanese descent. The festival is a platform of highlighting unique stories in Taiwanese cinema and encouraging emerging filmmakers. For more information about the full line-up and tickets, please visit

Press Contact:
Cindy Lu (Executive Director, TAFF)
(562) 644-4225
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4th Taiwanese American Film Festival Launches 2nd Online Workshop “Behind the Curtain – A Film Finance Workshop”
With support from the Ministry of Culture of Taiwan and Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles, the Taiwanese American Professionals - Los Angeles (TAP-LA) will present its second online workshop “Behind the Curtain – A Film Finance Workshop” on Wednesday, October 14th, 2020 from 7pm to 8:30pm PST. The workshop will be held free via Zoom and tickets will be made available on Eventbrite. For more information about the workshop and registration, please visit: This event will be live streamed on Facebook and Youtube.

“Behind the Curtain – A Film Finance Workshop”, moderated by Cindy Lu (Executive Director, 4th TAFF), will feature guest panelists Jeff Chao and Patrick Lee. Jeff and Patrick will share key insights on what goes on behind the scenes in getting a film financed, from conception to sale. The workshop will discuss the landscape of film and distribution in today’s market. Jeff and Patrick will dig deeper into what investors are looking for and empower filmmakers with greater clarity and understanding. The workshop will take questions from registrants and live chat participants for the closing Q&A.

Jeff Chao is the Vice President of Finance and Business Development at DIGITAL DOMAIN. Previously, Jeff was Senior Director, Finance at PARTICIPANT MEDIA, where he managed film investments for a $250 million film fund between Participant Media and Image Nation Abu Dhabi. Jeff has had direct involvement with film investments for over 31 films with budgets ranging from $2 million - $75 million.

Patrick Lee is a serial entrepreneur best known for being a co-founder and founding CEO of ROTTEN TOMATOES (, a leading entertainment website focused on movie reviews and news. Patrick holds a BA in Cognitive Science from the University of California at Berkeley. He is a founding team member of Gold House and an advisor to a number of startups and organizations.

Taiwanese American Film Festival (TAFF) has been held three successful years, scouting top emerging talent and bridging generations and cultures, as a platform for diverse storytelling, serving as the only showcase in the U.S. of films and multimedia by Taiwanese and Taiwanese American filmmakers. The fourth edition of TAFF will be held Online on Oct. 24th, 2020.

Press Contact: Cindy Lu (Executive Director, TAFF)
(562) 644-4225

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8 Taiwanese Indigenous Performing Arts Groups Featured at Arts Midwest + Western Arts Alliance 2020 Conference
With the support from Taiwan’s Ministry of Culture, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles will participate in the Western Arts Alliance (WAA) Annual Conference for the fourth consecutive year from October 6th to 9th, 2020. Due to the pandemic, this year marks the first virtual conference in collaboration with Arts Midwest. The WAA 2020 Conference continuously takes place in the Western United States as one of the few largest annual conferences. This year, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles will present the “Taiwan Showcase” website ( in the virtual exhibition hall of the conference. There will be 8 Taiwanese indigenous performing arts groups introduced to professional attendees to create American tour opportunities in the future.

The “Taiwan Showcase” website titled, “Life and Vitality of Indigenous Taiwan,” aims to display how community life nurtures creativity, while fieldwork and the reading of literature and history lay the groundwork for artistic creation. Rooted confidence stemming from the understanding of their own culture through the life and vitality of Taiwan, indigenous artists create works that are not limited by any signs and spaces. Furthermore, these artists are adept at collaborative projects with their lifestyles. The website includes a curatorial background, an introduction and video highlights of each group, and 1 short compilation video. Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles recommends these 8 groups not only for their boundless dance or music works but for the promotion of some ongoing American tour projects as well. These 8 groups include 4 songwriters and singers (Sangpuy, Anu.kaliting.sadipangan, Chalaw pasiwali, and O-KAI Singers), and 4 contemporary dance troupes (Tjimur Dance Theatre, Kuo-Shin Chuang Pangcah Dance Theatre, TAI Body Theatre, and Bulareyaung Dance Company). They guide global viewers through the past and present, traversing the worlds of traditional songs and contemporary performances, and share with them how they work with cultural elements and contemporary issues as they reconstruct the relationship between humans and nature. This website debuts on October 6th and remains available throughout November.

Additionally, the conference will hold a workshop titled, “Re-Opening & Getting to Work - A Look Forward,” on October 9th at 10:00 AM PDT. As Taiwan’s success in fighting COVID-19 has received global recognition, WAA invites Liu Yi-ruu, the General and Artistic Director of National Theater & Concert Hall (NTCH), to be one of the workshop speakers. Liu Yi-ruu will share NTCH’s experience in preparing the venue’s reopening with moderator Matthew Kowal (Co-founder of Majestic Collaboration) and three other speakers including Cole Huling (The Handsome Little Devils), Anna Glass (Executive Director of Dance Theatre of Harlem), and John Zirkle (Executive Director of Warren Miller Performing Arts Center).

WAA was established in 1967 and the majority of its members are performing arts professionals such as artists, managers, agents, and presenters from throughout the Western United States. Each year, the WAA annual conference takes place in August, and since 2017, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles has been a part of these conferences to promote Taiwanese performing arts groups. This year, Arts Midwest + Western Arts Alliance 2020 On-line Conference includes various activities, such as a virtual exhibition hall, forums, showcases, and workshops. For more information, please visit
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Taiwanese Short Film “Taiwanese CHA CHA CHA” is Selected for CAAMFest in San Francisco
Followed by selection for 2019 San Diego Asian Film Festival and 2020 Austin Asian American Film Festival, Taiwanese short film “Taiwanese CHA CHA CHA” is selected again by 2020 CAAMFest (formerly the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival). The film with the post-screening Q&A will be available on CAAMFest On-Demand through October 14th-18th in the “GLOBAL SNAPSHOTS” program with other international short films. Viewers are able to purchase tickets to access the program, which will be streaming around the world. Welcome to watch the program and the Q&A participated by the director YuHui (Judie) Yang.

The storyline of “Taiwanese CHA CHA CHA” describes two young girls set out for a secret journey against their parents’ will in order to reconnect back with grandpa through Taiwanese. PeiPei, a 16-year-old high school student who lives under the pressure of the upcoming college entrance exam, plans to visit her grandpa who lives in the countryside, but she is worried about her poor Taiwanese that might cause barriers of communication with her grandpa. Xiaoqi, a talented student, tries hard to start her Taiwanese translating career no matter how other people make fun of her and doubt her choice. Their encounter encourages each other, turning the ridiculed and doubted journey into a meaningful and unexpected adventure. The director YuHui (Judie) Yang was graduated from San Francisco State University with a MFA degree in Cinema. Judie’s work focuses on the loss of culture and dialects, the intimate but struggling relationship within a family, and the craft of black comedy.

CAAMFest is presented by the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM), a nonprofit organization founded in 1980 dedicated to presenting stories that convey the richness and diversity of Asian American experiences to the international audience for 40 years. Each year in May, CAAMFest presents over 100 works in San Francisco and Oakland, becoming the showcase for new Asian American and Asian film, food and music programs. This year, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, “CAAMFest Online: Heritage at Home” featured over 20 online film screenings from May 13rd to 22nd in celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage month. The online film festival “CAAMFest FORWARD” featuring 50 films and 2 drive-in experiences will be held in October.

About Taiwanese CHA CHA CHA
Time: October 14th-18th, 2020

Press Contact:
Vivian Wang
Tel: (213) 403-0168 #103

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The Taiwan Academy in LA and LACMA co-present Taiwanese director Mou Tun-fei’s early works premiere on the West Coast
The Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art are pleased to present FILM at LACMA: The Early Films of Mou Tun-fei. Online screenings will feature the Taiwanese director's first two feature films, “I Didn't Dare to Tell You” and “The End of the Track.” Virtual screenings of the films will be available and free to the public within the US region from September 25 to 27, 2020. For more information and to RSVP please visit:

Mou Tun-fei (1941-2019) declared cinema his lifework meanwhile he was still an art college student. “I Didn't Dare to Tell You” and “The End of the Track” are the only two feature-length films he made in Taiwan and are among the nation’s very first independent titles. Both went unreleased until 2018 for unknown reasons, though rumor has it that the realistic depiction of the stifling society in “I Didn’t Dare to Tell You” and the hint of homosexuality in “The End of the Track” could have triggered those reasons. Discouraged by these setbacks, Mou spent the following years travelling in Europe and South America before working in Hong Kong for Shaw Brothers Pictures.

Adam Piron, film curator at LACMA, said that those are familiar with Mou Tun-fei's work within the US know him from his more shocking and controversial later work, but his first films are mostly complete unknowns to them. “They were to me, which as a film curator, is a dream to program,” said Piron. “Mou’s career is really fascinating in that it provides not only a look at an artist who was finding his voice…but also a look at how he was pushing themes that were really ahead of their time, culturally.” Piron added, “These films also provide an essential part of a larger survey of a then-burgeoning scene of independent and avant-garde filmmakers that's unique to Taiwanese Cinema.”

The feature film, “I Didn't Dare to Tell You,” follows a primary school student who works a night job to pay off his father's gambling debts, and as a result, he constantly dozes off during his classes in the day. As the teacher investigates, a series of family disputes ensues. This film has only been seen by a small number of people at private screenings, but nevertheless, its realistic style has been proven influential.

The long-lost second feature by Mou Tun-fei, “The End of the Track,” is a sensitive story of inner turmoil and social portraiture. Hsiao-tung and Yung-sheng are adolescent boys whose unusually close friendship comes to a sudden end with Yung-sheng’s accidental death. Hsiao-tung assuages his guilt by becoming a surrogate son to Yung-sheng’s grieving and economically-deprived parents, but is eventually forced to confront the nature of his relationship with his deceased friend. Unreleased in its day and unseen for decades, “The End of the Track” now takes its rightful place as an early landmark of Taiwanese queer and independent cinemas.

Emmy Yang, Director of Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles, said Mou’s work is a gateway to understand Taiwan at a specific moment of its own development, and she hopes to keep collaborating with LACMA and introduce more of Taiwan’s cinema to the U.S.

According to the movie rating system in Taiwan, these two films require parental guidance for children ages 6-12, and children under 6 are not allowed for viewing.

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4th Annual Taiwanese American Film Festival Launches 1st Online Workshop “Breaking in: A Screenwriting Workshop”
With support from the Ministry of Culture of Taiwan and Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles, the 4th Annual Taiwanese American Film Festival (TAFF) is held by Taiwanese American Professionals - Los Angeles (TAP-LA) this October. After the two virtual outreach events held in May and July, TAP-LA will present its first online workshop “Breaking in: A Screenwriting Workshop” on Saturday, September 19th, 2020 from 10:30am to 12pm PST. The workshop will be held via Zoom and tickets will be made available on Eventbrite. For more information about the workshop and registration, please visit:

“Breaking in: A Screenwriting Workshop” will be moderated by Cindy Lu (Executive Director, 4th TAFF) and will feature guest contributors Kai Wu and April Shih. The workshop will focus on different screenwriting styles, how to find representation, and how to embrace writer’s block. Kai and April will also discuss their journeys as screenwriters, and share their recommendations for emerging screenwriters. The workshop will offer 15 minutes to workshop screenwriting pitches with attendees on a first-come, first-served basis, followed by a Q&A via Zoom speaking rooms.

Wu Kai-yu (吳凱毓) a.k.a. Kai Wu is a Taiwanese-American television writer and creator of The Ghost Bride, a 2020 Taiwanese-Malaysian Netflix International Original series. She was most recently a Co-Executive Producer on Paper Girls at Amazon and prior to that, she was a Co-Executive Producer on Amazon’s Carnival Row. Her previous writing credits include Deception (ABC), Time After Time (ABC), The Flash (The CW) and Hannibal (NBC). Kai has developed for Freeform and currently has a pilot at Amazon.

April Shih (石圓圓) is a Los Angeles-based television writer/producer and filmmaker. April has produced several films and plays including the Ovation Award-winning revival of Kiss of the Spiderwoman: The Musical. She has written for FXX’s critically acclaimed comedy You’re the Worst, Mrs. America (starring Cate Blanchett), Undone (on Amazon), and Evel, a forthcoming limited series about Evel Knievel on USA. April is currently a Supervising Producer on FXX's Dave. April also has a half-hour series in development at FX with Larry Wilmore and is writing the feature film adaptation of Weike Wang's novel Chemistryfor Amazon Studios.

Press Contact: Cindy Lu (Executive Director, TAFF) 
(562) 644-4225

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Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles Debuts Spotlight on Taiwan at Frameline44
Taiwan became the first Asian country to legalize same-sex marriage in May 2019. This landmark legislation paved the way for a higher level of creative freedom for Taiwan's LGBTQ artists. One year after the law took effect, with the support from Taiwan’s Ministry of Culture, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles has first partnered with Frameline44 San Francisco International LGBTQ+ Film Festival and will present “Spotlight on Taiwan” through September 17-27, 2020, within which one feature “The Teacher” and one documentary “Taiwan Equals Love” will be screened virtually followed by a Q&A and a panel discussion about Taiwan’s diversity and equality. The film streaming with Q&A and panel discussion is geo-blocked to California, and tickets are available only to viewers in California. Spotlight on Taiwan is expected to amaze the audience with Taiwanese films in an innovative way!

“The Teacher” depicts the dilemma among love, family, and career faced by a gay teacher starred by Oscar Chiu, who was nominated for Best New Performer at 56th Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival. And Actress Winnie Chang Shih-ying, who played the wife, won the 56th Golden Horse Award for Best Supporting Actress. Director Ming Lang Chen, actor Oscar Chiu, and actress Winnie Chang Shih-ying will participate in the virtual post-screening Q&A. “Taiwan Equals Love” documents the clash between marriage equality activists and their opponents in late 2016, a time when the parties of the Taiwan Legislative Yuan submitted drafts on the marriage equality act but were confronted with anti-LGBTQ groups. Meanwhile, three pairs of same-sex partners of different generations are also facing their own issues that challenge their relationships. The screening of “Taiwan Equals Love” will be followed by a panel discussion which co-producer Jay Lin and director Ming Lang Chen of “The Teacher” are invited to share with the audience Taiwan’s LGBTQ film story creation after legalization of same-sex marriage. Moreover, in order to reveal the production of Taiwanese film and Taiwan’s LGBTQ artistic achievements to the world, the panel discussion and Q&A will be available to be viewed worldwide on Youtube and Facebook since September 19 (PST, panel discussion) and September 26 (PST, Q&A).

Founded in 1977 by media arts nonprofit Frameline, the San Francisco International LGBTQ+ Film Festival has become the longest-running, largest and most widely recognized LGBTQ film festival in the United States. With an annual attendance of 60,000+, the festival is held every year in late June that coincides with the annual San Francisco Pride parade, which takes place on the last Sunday of June. This year, due to the impact of COVID-19, the Frameline44 Festival is announced to be held virtually through September 17–27, featuring 30 features and 7 shorts sections from 24 countries, an opening drive-in screening, Q&As, panels and a virtual Award Night. For more information, please visit

About Spotlight on Taiwan
The Teacher: 
Taiwan Equals Love: 
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2020 Outfest Los Angeles LGBTQ Film Festival kicks off Taiwan Program with “The Teacher” and “Sunshine in the Ruins”
The Outfest Los Angeles LGBTQ Film Festival is an internationally known LGBTQ film festival committed to gender equality and diversity. This year, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles collaborates again with Outfest Los Angeles to launch the Taiwan Program virtually. Available from August 24th-26th PST, the Taiwan Program will present a feature film titled “The Teacher,” and a short film titled “Sunshine in the Ruins,” with post-screening Q&As. This year’s Outfest virtual film festival allows the audience to watch films beyond the geographic boundaries at any time. It also provides an opportunity for the American audience to enjoy Taiwanese films in an innovative way!

With the support from Taiwan’s Ministry of Culture, Taiwan Academy has collaborated with Outfest Los Angeles for three consecutive years since 2018, endorsing the Taiwanese LGBTQ films and Taiwan’s achievements in being the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage. Being an emerging hub for gender friendly film and TV production, the Taiwan Program is excited to feature “The Teacher” and “Sunshine in the Ruins.”

With focus on the marriage equality activist and high school civics teacher Kevin, who falls in love with an HIV positive married man, “The Teacher” talks about Kevin’s tabooed romantic entanglement with a heterosexual marriage. With his mother not understanding this relationship, the fear of getting infected, the threat from the married man’s wife, and the rumors circulating on campus, Kevin is stuck in a three-way dilemma among love, family, and career. Actress Winnie Chang, who plays the wife, portrays perfectly and naturally the jealousy and anger from betrayal. Her amazing performance won the 56th Golden Horse Award for Best Supporting Actress. Director Chen Ming-Lang will participate in the virtual post-screening Q&A.

The short film, “Sunshine in the Ruins,” is about the inability to accept homosexuality among the general public in spite of the fact that Taiwan is the first Asian country that legalizes same-sex marriage. The short film centers around intergenerational communications that take place in military dependents’ village of Taiwan, with a hope of capturing the discomfort in facing the topics on homosexuality and the relief through reflection. This short film will be included in the short film section “Shorts: Heart to Break.” Director Chou Yu-Cheng will share his creation process and his statement on LGBTQ cultural narrative in Taiwan during the virtual post-screening Q&A.

“These two films present the breathtaking affections and struggles through their intricate narratives,” said Emmy Yang, Director of Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles. She added, “they represent the creative freedom and the dedication to equal rights for LGBTQ in Taiwan. We are extremely delighted to have worked with Outfest Los Angeles for three consecutive years. Through this well-known platform, splendid Taiwanese LGBTQ works will be unveiled to amaze the American audience.”

Ever since its foundation in 1982, Outfest has become one of the most important LGBTQ-oriented media organizations in the world dedicated to gender equality and diversity through LGBTQ-themed film screenings. Due to the pandemic this year, Outfest has turned into a virtual film festival over 11 days from August 20th – 30th, showcasing more than 160 films, panels, and live events from over 20 countries, as well as drive-in screenings. For more information about the 2020 Outfest Los Angeles LGBTQ Film Festival, please visit

About Taiwan Program
- Time: Monday, August 24th - Wednesday, August 26th PST for feature film “The Teacher” and short film “Sunshine in the Ruins” (only available to viewers in the United States)
- Feature film “The Teacher”: (free screening)
- Short Film Section “Shorts: Heart to Break” - “Sunshine in the Ruins”: Admission is included in ALL-ACCESS PASS, or can be purchased through Shorts Package: 
- Post-screening Q&As for both films are available today throughout the festival (August 30th).

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Keywords: 文化部
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