Variety Names Maggie Lee Chief Asia Film Critic

Variety has promoted Hong Kong-based critic Maggie Lee to the position of chief Asia film critic.

In her new assignment, Lee will continue to cover a broad range of Asian cinema, from new theatrical releases to premieres at major film festivals including Cannes, Toronto, Busan and Shanghai. Her promotion solidifies an international team of Variety reviewers that includes chief film critics Justin Chang (based in Los Angeles) and Scott Foundas (New York), chief international film critic Peter Debruge (Paris), and international film critics Guy Lodge (London) and Jay Weissberg (Rome).

Lee joined Variety in 2012 after serving as Asia chief critic for the Hollywood Reporter.

“Maggie brings a peerless depth of knowledge and passion to one of the toughest, most demanding and important beats in the industry,” Chang said. “There are few critics out there who are as hip to the latest trends in manga adaptation as they are conversant with the martial-arts epics of King Hu, or who can write about Mizoguchi and Miike with equal eloquence.”

Lee also writes a critical column on Asian cinema in Discovery, the in-flight magazine of Cathay Pacific. Beyond her work as a journalist, she has handled programming and editorial duties for the Tokyo Film Festival, the Short Shorts Film Festival (Japan), the Hong Kong Film Festival, the Hong Kong Film Archive and Hong Kong’s Leisure and Cultural Services Dept. In 2010, she received an award from the Busan Film Festival and Korean Film Press Assn. for her contribution to Korean cinema.

Lee received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English language and literature from University College at Oxford U. She was a Ph.D candidate for drama and literature at Queen Mary & Westfield College, London U.

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