An extremely dense program with more than 300 events scheduled – in 8 days only. Among these, more than 200 feature films, documentaries, short films (first and second screenings included), a conference on Fritz Lang, a round table about Cinema&Fiction, 8 Cinema Master Classes, 7 “Focus on…” over the actors. Up to this date, 120 Italian and 50 International cinema press journalist have confirmed their accreditation. From film directors to actors, producers and distributors, more than 350 guests will attend the Festival. Bif&st 2015 overall budget is 1,200,000 euro (VAT inclusive), with a 100,000 euro cut compared to previous editions, yet with the same expected audience registered at Bif&st 2013 and 2014 – and corresponding to the full capacity of the 12 halls entirely dedicated to the Festival.
The ItaliaFilmFest Awards ceremony during the Festival closing soirée at Teatro Petruzzelli will be presented by actress and director Stefania Rocca. Among the actors and actresses awaited in Bari: Barbara Bobulova, Carolina Crescentini, Marco D’Amore, Libero De Rienzo, Ivan Franek, Massimo Ghini, Adriano Giannini, Lucrezia Guidone, Alessandro Haber, Marco Leonardi, Valentina Lodovini, Antonella Maddalena, Simona Marchini, Marcello Mazzarella, Francesco Pannofino, Marcello Prayer, Isabella Ragonese, Micaela Ramazzotti, Ksenia Rappoport, Katja Riemann, Michele Riondino, Alba Rohrwacher, Carolina Rosi, Claudio Santamaria, Greta Scarano, Sara Serraiocco, Alessandro Sperduti, Jasmine Trinca, Luca Zingaretti and many others who are about to confirm their participation.
During the closing March 28th press conference, Bif&st Director Felice Laudadio will announce the general guidelines to Bif&st 2016, which – according to the Teatro Petruzzelli availability – will be held April 2nd to 9th. Here is the festival detailed program:
“International Premières” at Teatro Petruzzelli
This non-competitive section will open March 21st with the movie Tempo instabile con probabili schiarite by Marco Pontecorvo, starring John Turturro, Luca Zingaretti, Lillo and Carolina Crescentini, to be released by Good Films on April 2nd; the film will be screened at the presence of the director and part of the cast.
On March 22nd, Jean-Jacques Annaud will present his latest film, with a budget of 38-billion-dollars and almost entirely shot in Mongolia, Le dernier loup (Wolf Totem), a coproduction China-France, where it recently obtained excellent praises both among the critics and the audience. Distributed in Italy by Notorious Pictures on March 26th.
On March 23rd, Universal International Pictures will present a film openly inspired by Metropolis by Fritz Lang (to whom Bif&st dedicates a vast retrospective): Ex Machina, an intriguing debut work of British director Alex Garland, starring Oscar Isaac (whom we will soon see among the cast of the upcoming J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars), Alicia Vikander and Domhnall Gleeson (protagonist of Unbroken directed by Angelina Jolie). The movie will be released in theatres from April 30th.
On March 24th, the Teatro Petruzzelli will host the world première of Ho ucciso Napoleone, an amusing and exciting Italian comedy by Giorgia Farina with Micaela Ramazzotti, Libero de Rienzo, Adriano Giannini, Thony, Pamela Villoresi, Elena Sofia Ricci. The movie will be distributed by 01 on March 26th.
Starring Michael Fassbender (the multiple times awarded actor of 12 Years a Slave and Shame), and the very young yet renowned Australian actor Kodi Smit-McPhee – Slow West, the feature film debut of the Scottish director John Maclean, may be among Bif&st 2015 best discoveries. After being screened in Bari on March 25th, it will be released by BIM, fall 2015.
The International cast of the movie presented on March 26th is also remarkable: The Gunman by Pierre Morel, with Sean Penn, Jasmine Trinca, Javier Bardem, Idris Elba, and set in Africa, London and Barcelona. The movie will be distributed by 01 on May 7th.
Two years ago, Margarethe von Trotta honoured Bif&st with the absolute première of her successful film Hannah Arendt, played by Barbara Sukowa. On March 27th this year, she will return to Bari to present the international première of her latest movie, The Misplaced World, at the Teatro Petruzzelli. The film, enthusiastically welcomed at the special screening organized on February 13th by Berlinale, features once again Barbara Sukowa, together with another great German actress, Katja Riemann, who will also be among Bif&st guests.
On Saturday, March 28th, the closing film of the festival will be the new, irresistible The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, starring Maggie Smith, Judy Dench, Richard Gere, Bill Nighy, Penelope Wilton and directed by John Madden, who attended Bif&st 2012 to present his first Marigold Hotel. Once again distributed by 20th Century Fox, this film will hit theatres April 30th.
The “International Première” section program, will be completed by two Special Events, both scheduled on the opening day of the Festival, March 21st: the preview of Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck by Brett Morgen, released by Universal, April 28th – and the midnight screening of Humandroid (Chappie) by Neill Blomkamp (author of District 9 and Elysium). Also this movie, released by Warner Bros on April 9th, features a robot with very human feelings, inspired by Lang’s Metropolis robot, as a protagonist.
“International Panorama” at Teatro Petruzzelli
In the competition program of the “International Panorama” section, still held at Teatro Petruzzelli but during the afternoon (4pm and 6.30pm), it will be possible to see 12 of the best movies produced during the last year all around the world, and entirely unreleased in Italy. A Jury composed by 30 selected spectators and chaired by producer and distributor Valerio De Paolis, founder of BIM, will confer the Bif&st 2015 Award to the director of the best films, selected with the collaboration of deputy director Enrico Magrelli and programmer Giuliana La Volpe. These are the movies in competition: Shelter by Paul Bettany with Jennifer Connelly, debut work of the famous British actor (2014, Usa); Graziella by Mehdi Charef with Rossy De Palma (2014, France); Road 47 by Vicente Ferraz with Sergio Rubini (2014, Brazil-Portugal); Discount by Louis-Julien Petit with Olivier Barthelemy (2015, France); Jamais de la vie by Pierre Jolivet with Olivier Gourmet (2015, France); Accused by Paula van der Oest, Academy Award nominated movie (2014, Netherlands-Belgium-Sweden-Luxembourg); Miss Julie by Liv Ullmann with Jessica Chastain, Colin Farrell, Samantha Morton (2014, Norway-UK-Ireland-France); L’antiquaire by François Margolin with Anna Sigalevitch and Michel Bouquet (2015 France); The Guide by Oles Sanin (Ukraine 2014); Le temps des aveux by Régis Wargnier with Olivier Gourmet (2014, France-Cambodia); Kafkas der Bau by Jochen Alexander Freydank, winner of the 2007 Best Short Film Academy Award (2014, Germany). Out of competition, Bif&st will also present the wonderful Italian documentary film Magicarena by Andrea Prandstraller and Niccolò Bruna, written and produced by Agnese Fontana, backstage to the superb staging of Verdi’s Aida, realised by La Fura dels Baus at the Arena di Verona.
“Cinema Master Classes” at Teatro Petruzzelli
An unprecedented parterre de rois, composed of eight great European film directors is about to take the stage of the Teatro Petruzzelli in Bari, to hold the always much awaited Cinema Master Classes. This year the lessons will run March 21st to 28th and they will be organized in collaboration with Fipresci, the International Federation of Cinema Press. The eight Master Classes, each beginning at 11.30am, and preceded at 9 am by a film of its “Maestro”, will start with Sir Alan Parker, introduced by film critic Derek Malcolm, who will begin his lesson right after the amazing 1978 movie Midnight Express (March 21st). It will then be the turn of Jean-Jacques Annaud, who, introduced by Michel Ciment, will begin after the screening of his 1997 movie Seven Years in Tibet (March 22nd).
Greek author Costa-Gavras’ lesson will draw on his 2002 film Amen, and on the controversial relationship between the pontificate of Pius XII and the Nazi regime (March 23rd). Then it will be the turn of a great maestro of Italian cinema, Ettore Scola, who will hold his Master Class after the screening of his Una giornata particolare (A Special Day). The 1977 movie, thanks to which Scola obtained his first Academy Award nomination, will be presented in a digitally restored copy by the CSC-National Film Archive, in collaboration with Surf Films (March 24th). Introduced by film critic Grazyna Torbicka, Polish Andrzej Wajda – winner of an Academy Award, and of a Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement, will deal with his 50 years of film making – starting from one of his latest titles: the striking 2007 Katyn, about the Soviets’ crimes in Poland at the inception of World War II (March 25th).
Introduced by Klaus Eder, another legendary author: German Edgar Reitz, director of Heimat – the longer than 54 hours movie in 30 episodes, which obtained countless prizes over the years – will begin his Class from the recently restored episode Hermännchen (March 26th). In 1981, in Venice, Margarethe von Trotta won both the Golden Lion and the Fipresci Award with The German Sisters (Die Bleierne Zeit); this will be the movie that will spring the discussion with the German film director (that will begin at 11 on March 27th).
Finally, introduced by French cinema critic Jean Gili, it will be the turn of another great Italian director included in the Cinema Master Classes panel: Nanni Moretti. His “lesson” will be surprising and particular – and it will begin right after the screening of Caro Diario, which received the Best Director Award at 1994 Cannes Film Festival, together with a plethora of other awards, among which the Fipresci Prix.
Fipresci 90 Award and Federico Fellini Platinum Award
The eight film directors of the Cinema Master Classes will receive the Fipresci 90 Platinum Award in occasion of the 90° Anniversary of the International Federation of the Cinema Press, which will be celebrated in Bari during Bif&st with the participation of about fifty cinema critics coming from all over the world. From 1946, the Fipresci Prix is the prestigious acknowledgment attributed by critics to the best films presented in major international festivals.
During the closing evening of the Festival, Nanni Moretti will also receive by Ettore Scola the Federico Fellini Platinum Award for Cinematic Excellence.
ItaliaFilmFest/Feature films Competition
Together with the International films and retrospectives, the third Bif&st pillar has always been Italian cinema. The ItaliaFilmFest/Feature Films section (which does not include debut works) will feature a competition among the 12 best Italian movies selected from those released in theatre or selected in national and international festivals, March 2014 to March 2015. A Jury, expressed by the National Union of Italian Film Critics and composed by Franco Montini (SNCCI President), Vito Attolini, Paola Casella, Francesco Gallo, Andrea Martini, Cristiana Paternò and Federico Pontiggia, will assign the following Awards: Mario Monicelli Award to the best director; Franco Cristaldi Award to the best producer; Tonino Guerra Award to the best film subject; Luciano Vincenzoni Award to the best screenwriter; Anna Magnani Award to the best leading actress; Vittorio Gassman Award to the best leading actor; Alida Valli Award to the best supporting actress; Alberto Sordi Award to the best supporting actor; Ennio Morricone Award to the best score composer; Giuseppe Rotunno Award to the best cinematographer; Dante Ferretti Award to the best production designer; Roberto Perpignani Award to the best editing; Piero Tosi Award to the best costume designer.
First event of the season of major Italian cinema awards – Bif&st has each year anticipated later acknowledgments. During 2014 only, the films screened in competition in Bari have obtained 20 David di Donatello (out of 20), 20 Silver Ribbons and 16 Golden Ciak.
These are the movies in competition: on March 21st Torneranno i prati (Greenery Will Bloom Again) by Ermanno Olmi; on the 22nd Anime nere (Black Souls) by Francesco Munzi; and Hungry Hearts by Saverio Costanzo; on the 23rd Incompresa (Misunderstood) by Asia Argento; and Il ragazzo invisibile (Invisible Boy) by Gabriele Salvatores; on the 24th Biagio by Pasquale Scimeca; and Noi e la Giulia by Edoardo Leo; on the 25th Buoni a nulla by Gianni De Gregorio; and Il nome del figlio (An Italian Name) by Francesca Archibugi; on the 26th I nostri ragazzi (The Dinner) by Ivano De Matteo; and Il giovane favoloso (Leopardi) by Mario Martone; on the 27th Patria by Felice Farina.
ItaliaFilmFest/Debut Films Competition
The Jury of the ItaliaFilmFest/Debut Film section, composed by 30 selected spectators and chaired by critic and cinema scholar Jean Gili, director of Annecy Italian Film Festival, will attribute the Francesco Laudadio Debut Director Award to the director of the best first – or second – Italian feature film, chosen among the ones released in theatres or selected in National or International film festivals, March 2014 to March 2015. The following 12 films were selected: on March 21st Index zero by Lorenzo Sportiello; and Last summer by Lorenzo Guerra Seràgnoli; on the 22nd La foresta di ghiaccio (The Ice Forest) by Claudio Noce; and Vergine giurata (Sworn Virgin) by Laura Bispuri; on the 23rd Noi 4 by Francesco Bruni; and Le meraviglie (The Wonders) by Alice Rohrwacher; on the 24th Noi siamo Francesco by Guendalina Zampagni; and Senza nessuna pietà by Michele Alhaique; on the 25th La settima onda by Massimo Bonetti; and Fino a qui tutto bene (So Far So Good) by Roan Johnson; on the 26th Più buio di mezzanotte (Darker Than Midnight) by Sebastiano Riso; Perez by Edoardo De Angelis.
The same Jury will evaluate the best actors, to whom the Nuovo Imaie Award for Best Leading Actor and Actress, will be conferred.
ItaliaFilmFest/Out of Competition Documentary films
In the ItaliaFilmFest/Documentary films section, an extremely selected list of Italian documentaries will be screened. The films have been selected among the best of the year by the Artistic Direction, with the collaboration of Maurizio Di Rienzo. These are the selected movies: on March 22nd: Franco, un uomo in piedi e la signora vestita di nebbia. Una storia italiana by Mimmo Mongelli; and Come il peso dell’acqua by Andrea Segre; on March 23rd: Altamente by Gianni De Blasi; and SmoKings by Michele Fornasero; on March 24th: La zuppa del demonio by Davide Ferrario; and Qualcosa di noi by Wilma Labate; on March 25th: The special need by Carlo Zoratti; and Sul vulcano by Gianfranco Pannone; on March 26th: Triangle by Costanza Quatriglio; and Quando c’era Berlinguer by Walter Veltroni.
Before the Petruzzelli evening Premières some interesting “pills” of documentary films over Apulia, found in the vast Istituto Luce Archive: The construction works of the new Bari port, during the 20’s; Bari. San Nicola’s procession, during the 20’s; Bari. The Princes of Piedmont at the Fiera del Levante, 1931; The new road by Foggia, 1931; Taranto. Prolific families. The breeding of quadruplets and of eight brothers, 1937; Ascari’s Victory at the third Bari Grand Prix, 1949; In Rome, Bari wins against Verona and enters the Premier League, 1958; The History of Jazz according to Lino Banfi, 1971. Each “pill” runs between 1 and 2 minutes.
The Focus on… an actor or an actress interviewed in public by Franco Montini, president of the National Union of the Film Critics – has always been one of the classic and most successful Bif&st appointments. This year it will be the turn of Luca Zingaretti (March 21st), Alba Rohrwacher (22nd), Ksenia Rappoport (23rd), of a surprise guest (24th), Valentina Lodovini (25th), Marco D’Amore (26th) and Stefania Rocca (27th). Stefania Rocca will also present two short films she directed for ActionAid: Osa (10’) and L’abbraccio (4’22”). All these meetings will be held in the Foyer of the Teatro Margherita; the same place where the authors and protagonists of the scheduled movies, will hold their daily press conferences.
The memory of Cinema
1.Fritz Lang Festival – by Felice Laudadio and Carlo di Carlo, in cooperation with CSC-National Film Archive, Bologna Film Archive, RAI Teche, Friedrich-Wilhelm- Murnau-Stiftung, Goethe-Institut Rome, Sinister Film, Ermitage, Surf Film
2. Bif&st and CSC-National Film Archive present Tribute to Francesco Rosi – by Felice Laudadio, Emiliano Morreale and Orsetta Gregoretti, in cooperation with the Bologna Film Archive and RAI Teche.
At Bif&st the “Remembrance day” is every day. This is the reason why, in order to fight the growing and worrying phenomenon of a relapse into neo-fascism, Bari Film Festival will present the short movie SK-Sonderkommando by Nicola Ragone starring Marcello Prayer and Tommaso Lazzotti (2015, 18’) and will also present again ’43-’97 by Ettore Scola (1997, 9’).
Through the numerous commemorations of the beginning and horror of World War I – we strived to feature Torneranno i prati (Greenery Will Bloom Again) by Ermanno Olmi among our competing titles - Bif&st will pay tribute to an anniversary of which nobody seems yet to speak about: April 30th, 1975, with the fall of Saigon, 40 years ago – a date which marked the end of the atrocious Vietnam War, ruinously lost by the Americans. Under the “Vietnam Generation” label, we will present three documentary films, proposed by the Audiovisual Archive of the Democratic and Labour Movement (AAMOD): Le ciel, la terre by Joris Ivens (1966, 40’, France), Hanoi, martes 13 by Santiago Álvarez (1967, 38’, Cuba) and Vietnam, scene del dopoguerra by Ugo Gregoretti and Romano Ledda (1975, 97’, Italy). These three documentary films are part of a highly precious ensemble of materials over the Vietnam War – collected and conserved by AAMOD – which will be screened towards the end of spring in Rome at the Casa del Cinema, in collaboration with Bif&st and curated by Giandomenico Curi and Paola Scarnati.
Round Table – Cinema&Fiction: parallel convergences?
In the afternoon of March 27th and 28th, Bif&st will host an important round table titled Cinema&Fiction: parallel convergences?. Curated by Fabiano Fabiani (former Cinecittà Holding Managing Director and President of the APT (Association of Italian Television Producers), and by Bif&st deputy director Marco Spagnoli, the panel revolves around a highly topical theme, which was debated even by Bernardo Bertolucci and Steven Spielberg: are the latest serials, notably the American ones, surpassing the qualities and values of cinema? Which are the trends that may be spotted in the current Italian fiction, compared to Italian cinema? Speakers: Matilde Bernabei, Gianni Canova, Daniele Cesarano, Umberto Contarello, Carlo Degli Esposti, Marco Follini, Carlo Freccero, Mario Gianani, Silvia Napolitano, Severino Salvemini, Andrea Scrosati, Alberto Sironi, Riccardo Tozzi, Pietro Valsecchi.
Workshop of Production and Costume design
Bif&st 2015 will host four Workshops dedicated to Set design (in his various aspects cinema, teatro and tv) and Costume design, led by Lorenzo Baraldi, Giovanni Licheri, Alida Cappellini and costume designer Gianna Gissi; and organized in cooperation with the ASC, Italian Production designers, Costume designers and Set decorators Guild.
Exhibition dedicated to Francesco Rosi – by Angelo Amoroso d’Aragona, in collaboration with the private collection Giuseppe Serra of Canosa di Puglia, with the Centro Cinema “San Biagio” in Cesena and the Mediateca Regionale Pugliese. Sala Murat, March 16th to 28th.
Exhibition dedicated to Fritz Lang – by Angelo Amoroso d’Aragona, in collaboration with the Stiftung Deutsche Kinemathek and the Mediateca Regionale Pugliese. Teatro Margherita, March 16th to 28th.
Bif&st in exhibit
Photographic Anthology by Nicola Amato and Pasquale Susca – Piazza del Ferrarese and Ex Palazzo delle Poste, March 21st to 28th
Cinema Shots – by Daniele Trevisi for the Apulia Film Commission. Ex Palazzo delle Poste 21st to 28th