18 August 2015

Local film lovers take over Canberra Film Festival

| Canfan
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The Canberra International Film Festival returns to Canberra in November with grassroots focus on films hand-picked by local experts. It also has a new home at the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia.

From the media release:

The festival will be curated by volunteer film enthusiasts who specialise in local, Indigenous, Asian, education and documentary genres, convened by Ronin Films founder and Electric Shadows cinema former manager, Andrew Pike.

“We aim to inform, stimulate and engage Canberra film-goers through a carefully selected mix of high quality and distinctive films that we are passionate about and want to share with the CIFF audience,” Dr Pike said.

The other festival programmers are NFSA’s head of education and Canberra Times film critic Cris Kennedy, producer Alice Taylor from the Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association, and Olivier Krischer from the ANU’s Centre for China in the World.

“Drawing on our expertise, we are curating a unique festival program showcasing Canberra’s filmmakers alongside Indigenous films, screenings from the Asia-Pacific and Middle East, and restored classics,” Mr Kennedy said.

The full program will be released next month but films already selected for the festival include the new NFSA restoration of the 1957 classic The Shiralee, and the 2015 martial arts film The Assassin, by celebrated Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-Hsien.

The festival will take full advantage of its new location, with screenings taking place at the NFSA’s Arc cinema, and workshops, discussions and networking opportunities for local film lovers and filmmakers in the theatrette and gallery spaces.

“This year’s film festival will allow for lots of interaction and insights to be shared between filmmakers and festival patrons, with most screenings introduced by someone involved in the creative process,” Ms Taylor said.

Mr Krischer said Canberra had a strong film culture with discerning and educated film-goers who want to be stimulated and challenged by a less commercial, grassroots festival. “We aim to fill that gap,” he said.

NFSA General Manager, Meg Labrum, welcomed the festival to its new home. “Such a wide range of films and events means that the festival will fascinate both long-timers and new festival goers,” she said.

To keep up to date with festival news, please visit the Canberra International Film Festival’s website or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Canberra International Film Festival
When: 5-15 November 2015
Where: National Film and Sound Archive
More info: http://ciff.com.au/h/index.html

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