After a rigorous selection process, the programming team concludes in the films that will enter in the International Competition section of the Festival. Each film must be either a debut, or the director’s second creation while simultaneously it must be screened in a national premiere. The particular section aims to distinguish all the new talents that are on their way of becoming the most sought-after creators of tomorrow.
STRANGER THAN FICTION / IN COMPETITION
The Competition section “Stranger than Fiction” aims to introduce to the public exciting, unusual, eccentric and charming images of a multi-voiced world, extraordinary everyday life stories which even the most talented screenwriter would envy, revealing looks on today’s reality, all enclosed in films-experiences.
GREEK SHORT STORIES / IN COMPETITION
The Athens International Film Festival Opening Nights supports the efforts of Greek filmmakers through the Official Competition Section of Greek Short Films.
The most important films of international and european production, which have been distinguished in top festivals abroad and have attracted the interest of film lovers all over the world, as well as unknown discoveries that will be discussed, compose each year a thrilling cinematic best of.
"ICONS", with capital letters as befits the people it features, is the section of the festival that presents documentaries dedicated to iconic figures in the arts and culture.
MUSIC & FILM
One of the Festival’s most popular sections undertakes to guide the audience through the most eclectic music genres, to introduce artists and new music trends, to attribute honor to memorable or unknown aspects of the history of music. This section includes the best music documentaries of the year, anniversary screenings of music films, as well as fiction films which place music in the center of their narration.
AIFF bring the audience in touch with the work of famous directors, whose films are considered as classics and are landmarks in the history of cinema. To this day, the Festival has presented full retrospectives or indicative parts of the work of creators such as Louis Malle, Robert Altman, Claire Dennis, John Huston, Yasujirō Ozu, Jean Cocteau, Andrzej Zulawski, Max Ophüls, Orson Welles, Jean Eustache, Edward Yang and Ernst Lubitsch.
At the same time, the Athens International Film Festival Opening Nights sheds its lights on upcoming creators of today, introducing to the Greek audience their very promising talent. Within this context, the Festival has presented the work of directors such as Tom Tykwer, Walter Salles, Fatih Akin, Sean Baker, Maren Ade, Tomasz Wasilewski, David Mackenzie and Guy Maddin.
Also, the Festival organizes tributes to national filmings of the present day and of the past, as well as special theme units, inspired by film trends but also by burning social issues.
This section hosts classical masterpieces but also disregarded world cinema diamonds, through anniversary screenings in digitally restored copies. This particular section includes as well the screenings that Opening Nights realize in collaboration with other domestic film festivals and social or cultural bodies.