Zhang Yimou's spy thriller Cliff Walkers received seven nominations, including one for best film, of the 34th edition of Golden Rooster, China's top film awards, said the China Film Association on Monday.
Zhang was nominated for best director. Yu Hewei and Zhang Yi, two leading actors of the film, will compete for best actor while Liu Haocun, the film's leading actress, was nominated for best actress, the association said in a press release.
Cliff Walkers was the first foray of Zhang into the spy genre. Set in the 1930s in Northeast China's Harbin during the Japanese invasion, the film follows Communist Party special agents as they test their wits against their enemies to complete a secret mission.
The other nominees for the best film were Chinese Doctors, My People My Homeland, Island Keeper, Sister and The Pioneer.
For the first time, five foreign films will compete for the best international film, including The Father featuring Anthony Hopkins and Persischstunden, a joint production of Russia, Germany and Belarus.
Launched in 1981, the Golden Rooster Awards is sponsored by the China Federation of Literary and Art Circles and the China Film Association. This year's ceremony will be held in Xiamen of East China's Fujian province from Dec 28 to 30.