Athens International Film Festival

25th Athens International Film Festival: Press Conference

The 25th Athens International Film Festival held a Press Conference on Wednesday 11th September in the function room of the Friends of Music Society of the Athens Concert Hall.

Following a brief welcome speech by Alexandros Harkiolakis, the Director of the Friends of Music Society, the Festival’s Artistic Director, Loukas Katsikas,  welcomed those attending and began his speech by extending his profound gratitude to the The Ministry of Culture and Sports, the General Directorate of Contemporary Culture as well as  the Directorate of Performing Arts and Cinema for supporting this year’s festival event and hoped that the Ministry would continue to uphold the country’s cultural institutions.

Before presenting the programme of the 25th anniversary edition of the Athens International Film Festival, Mr Katsikas welcomed and thanked Mr Konstantinos Mpitzanis, President of the City of Athens Cultural, Sport and Youth Organisation, who is a long-standing collaborator of the Athens Open Air Film Festival.



The Artistic Director proceeded with a detailed presentation of the programme for this year’s 25th anniversary edition of the Festival, a cultural institution celebrating 25 years of independent film, which includes:

115 feature films, 63 short films, and 3 competition sections,  principal jury members such as Whit Stillman who will preside over the jury of the International Competition section and Maggi Hurt (BFI) who will preside over the International Documentary Competition section. He also mentioned distinguished guests among who are Costa-Gavras, Jerzy Skolimowski, Ariane Labed, Fatih Akin, the star of the film “The Golden Glove” Jonas Dassler, the stars of Ken Loach’s new film “Sorry We Missed You” Debbie Honeywood and Kris Hitchen as well as notable speakers such as Dimitra Galani, Mario Frangoulis, Gabriel Sakellaridis, George Halston, Orsalia Parthenis, Yannis Tseklenis and Katerina Koskina.

 


Furthermore, the 25th organisation of the Festival will present three exquisite tributes: “Spring Awakening: Wild Flowers of the Czech New Wave” in collaboration with the Czech Centre in Athens, a retrospective titled “Urban Myths: The Sublime Cinema of Edward Yang” with the support of the Taipei Representative Office in Athens and in attendance of the  director’s composer and life partner, Kaili Peng and the well-established thematic tribute “Blackboard Screen: Cinema and Education” with free admission which is  organised within the context of the ”Human Resources Development, Education and Lifelong Learning” Sectoral Programme.

New Greek Cinema composed of short films of a wide range, with cutting edge films such as Yorgos Lanthimos’ “Nimic” starring Matt Dillon and Daphne Patakia which will be screened right before “Cremator” by Juraj Herz (tribute to Czech New Wave), a film which the Greek director lists as one of his main influences for Academy Award-winning “The Favourite”.

Festival viewers will also have an opportunity to watch the Greek nationwide premiere of Ariane Labed’s directorial debut “OLLA” and “Electric Swan” by Konstantina Kotzamani. Both directors will attend as part of the Newcomer Greek Actor & Director and Greek Short Stories competition awards ceremony. Another nationwide premiere to be screened will be “Patision Avenue” by Thanasis Neofotistos.

The Special Screenings section includes the pre-festival screening of the long-awaited “The Goldfinch” starring Nicole Kidman, based on the similarly-titled novel by Donna Tartt (kindly endorsed by Tanweer), “Apocalypse Now: Final Cut” by Francis Ford Coppola, “Moonlighting” by Jerzy Skolimowski with the unrivaled Jeremy Irons and in attendance of the director himself, and the legendary “Repo Man” by Alex Cox.

Once more, the Festival will screen award-winning films from around the world as part of the “Festival Darlings” section, such as this year’s Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival, “Synonymes”, the wonderful “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” by Céline Sciamma, the Cannes Film Festival Jury Prize winner, “Bacurau”, the surprising animation “Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles”, a favourite for the upcoming Academy Awards and blockbuster phenomenon “The Farewell” and “Light of My Life”,  Academy Award-winner Casey Affleck’s directorial debut which has received rave reviews.

As a side observation, the Festival’s Artistic Director proudly stated that this year’s programme celebrates women as approximately half the films to be screened in the anniversary edition of the Festival,  tell exciting stories with women in the leading roles and/or are directed by women. The audience is invited to discover women’s grand presence through the stories told and to finally show them the consideration and love they rightfully deserve.

Mr Loukas Katsikas then went on to announce that the 25th Athens International Film Festival will inaugurate the “Giorgos Tziotzios” Honorary Award, which “bears the name of the person who made this Festival come true” and which will be presented to distinguished guests of the Festival as a lifetime achievement award in film and culture. This year’s recipients of the award will be the world-renowned and award-winning directors Costa-Gavras and Jerzy Skolimowski.

Finally, in the spirit of partnership and solidarity, values for which the Athens International Film Festival ardently stands, the successful collaboration from previous years with the Athens Ethnographic Film Festival (ETHNOFEST) and the Athens International Children’s Film Festival (ATHICFF) will continue this year with the premiere of the film “Dead Birds” in collaboration with the former and the  screening of the film “We Are Little Zombies” in collaboration with the latter. There will also be side events and joint efforts of a social nature with free admission screenings of sensitive issues (Doctors Without Borders, Mission ANTHROPOS, METAdrasi, SHEDIA, Amnesty International).

OPENING and CLOSING FILMS 



We would like to take the opportunity to remind you that the 25th Athens International Film Festival will we opening with “Parasite”, the Palme d’Or winner at the Cannes Film Festival, by South Korean director Joon-ho Bong on Wednesday 18th September at the Pallas theatre.

A reception will follow at City Link. The film will be screened with the kind endorsement of Seven Films.



The curtain will fall on the Festival on Saturday 28th September at the Athens Concert Hall with the closing ceremony and International Competition sections award ceremony followed by the nationwide premiere of the highly anticipated Greek film “Adults in the Room” by Costa-Gavras, to be attended by the director and other members of the cast and crew.

The film will be screened with the kind endorsement of Odeon. 

Tickets for the Closing Ceremony and the screening of the film will only be available through www.megaron.gr and through the ticket booths of the Athens Concert Hall.

 

PRESS CONFERENCE FOR MR COSTA-GAVRAS

As one of the Festival’s distinguished guests and on the event of the screening of his film, the world-renowned Greek director will hold a Press Conference along with other members of the cast and crew of his film, on Friday 27th September in the auditorium of the French Institute in Greece at 14:00.

Before wishing that everyone has a “great Festival” Mr Katsikas completed his presentation by warmly thanking the supporters and sponsors of the Festival such as COSMOTE TV (Main Sponsor), Jameson (Events Supporter), Fischer (Sponsor of the Audience Award), Aegean (Air Travel Sponsor), Viva.gr (ticket & film pass sales), Zolotas, HERTZ (Transportation Sponsor), the Greek Film Centre  for their endorsement of the awards for the Greek Short Stories Competition section, the film distributors (AMA FILMS, CAROUSEL FILMS, DANAOS FILMS, FEELGOOD ENTERTAINMENT, FILMTRADE, ODEON, ROSEBUD 21, SEVEN FILMS, SPENTZOS FILM, STRADA FILMS, TANWEER, WEIRD WAVE), the Metropolitan College for hosting the Press Office, the HILTON and Radisson Blu Park hotels for accommodating festival guests, the Goethe Institute, the French Institute of Greece, the British Council, the Czech Centre of Athens, the Embassy of Poland in Athens,  the Italian Institute of Culture and the Lucce Cinecitta, the Taipei Representative Office in Greece, the Irish Embassy, the Israeli Embassy and all the other supporters, collaborators, communication sponsorts and Festival  volunteers.

Athens’ beloved cinematic fall date celebrates 25 years this year and will take place from 18th to 29th September at the following cinemas: DANAOS 1 & 2, ODEON OPERA 1 & 2, IDEAL, ASTOR, PALLAS and the ATHENS CONCERT HALL.

Ticket Price: 6 EUROS 

Please note that tickets can be purchased online (through www.aiff.gr and www.viva.gr) and in person at sale points. Ticket sales will commence on Thursday 12th September at 10:00 am.

The festival programme can be found online HERE

Photo credits: Nikos Katsaros

 



    Publication date: 2019-09-11 16:54:14

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