'Stray Dogs' film by Tsai Ming-liang

HONG KONG – “Stray Dogs,” the austere, and possibly final film, by Tsai Ming-liang is after all to be given a theatrical release in the U.S. and in Tsai’s adopted home, Taiwan.

Taiwan distributor, Atom Cinema said that it would give the film one or two commercial screenings per day from late February. After that it will shift online and in summer be screened again in museums.

“Director Tsai wasn’t really planning on a general release,” Atom Cinema’s Desmond Yang told Variety.

Earlier this month, the film, about a homeless family living on the desperately mean streets of Taipei, was acquired for U.S. release by specialty distributor Cinema Guild.

The Malaysian-born, Taiwan-based Tsai won the Grand Jury Prize at Venice and was named best director at the Golden Horse Awards in November, but he has repeatedly expressed frustration with the commercial scene and impatient cinema audiences. He has also suggested that he may retire after “Dogs” and make any future films for museums and art galleries instead.

The film’s male lead and Tsai regular, Lee Kang-sheng also won best actor at the Golden Horse Awards and at the Asia-Pacific Film Festival for his role in “Dogs” as a single father who scrapes a living by holding up advertisement boards on the streets.

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