With a simultaneous presentation, in Athens and Thessaloniki, the full programme of the upcoming 64th Thessaloniki International Film Festival was unveiled yesterday. Days of Art in Greece attended the Institut français de Grèce and the welcoming Auditorium Theo Angelopoulos, where we were welcomed by the Festival’s Artistic Director, Orestis Andreadakis, and the Head of the Agora Department, Angeliki Vergou. In Thessaloniki, in the Pavlos Zannas Hall of the legendary Olympion, the audience and journalists were welcomed by the General Director of the Festival, Elise Jalladeau, and the Head of Programme of the Festival, Giorgos Krassakopoulos.
The 64th Thessaloniki International Film Festival will be held from November 2nd to November 12th 2023, both in physical spaces and online. A total of 270 full-length and short films will be screened at the 64th TIFF, in the movie theaters Olympion and Pavlos Zannas (Aristotelous Square), Frida Liappa, Tonia Marketaki, John Cassavetes and Stavros Tornes (Port of Thessaloniki) and Makedonikon. In addition, 79 films will be available online, through the Festival’s platform online.filmfestival.gr. Visual artist Vassilis Selimas is responsible for the 64th TIFF’s posters, whereas the Festiva’s trailers bear the signature of the multi-awarded film director Thanasis Neofotistos.
OPENING FILM – CLOSING FILM
- The Festival will kick off on Thursday November 2nd 2023 with the film Pot-au-Feu by French-Vietnamese director Trần Anh Hùng, recipient of the Best Director Award at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.
- The Festival will call it a wrap on Sunday November 12th 2023 with the screening of the film Fallen Leaves by the beloved Finnish auteur Aki Kaurismäki, which won the Jury Prize at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.
FIRST-CLASS NAMES IN THESSALONIKI
- The Festival is delighted to welcome the stunning movie star Monica Bellucci, who will be bestowed with the honorary Golden Alexander.
- The TIFF will also have the honor of welcoming two-times Oscar winner director and screenwriter Alexander Payne, who will present his new film The Holdovers.
- The director of a series of smashing TV hits (Six Feet Under, Game of Thrones, True Detective, among others), Jeremy Podeswa, will deliver a fascinating masterclass.
- Iconic Greek singer Haris Alexiou will serve as this year’s Agora’s ambassador.
- The Festival will host a tribute to the work of the renowned Greek film director and set designer Nikos Perakis, who will be bestowed with the honorary Golden Alexander.
GRAND TRIBUTE TO GHOSTS AND EXHIBITION “FANT SM S”
Invisible and tangible ghosts, both scary and familiar, real and allegorical, will take center stage in the large-scale tribute of the 64th Thessaloniki International Film Festival, curated by the artistic director of the New York Film Festival and internationally acclaimed film critic, Dennis Lim. In particular, the Festival’s grand tribute is composed of:
⇨ 33 full-length and short films, a lineup of world cinema gems.
⇨ The Festival’s main exhibition titled “FANT A SM S”, showcasing works by Nikos Kessanlis, Vlassis Caniaris, Celia Daskopoulou and Jason Molfessis, four legendary Greek visual artists, accompanied by a photographic commentary by Dimitris Troumplekas.
⇨ A special bilingual Festival edition that includes texts and analyses from film theorists and acclaimed filmmakers.
TRIBUTE TO TAKIS KANELLOPOULOS
- The unique poetic gaze of the renowned film director Takis Kanellopoulos, who lived and worked in Thessaloniki, unravels in the the large-scale tribute hosted by the Festival, featuring nine Kanellopoulos’ films.
- Within the framework of the tribute, the multi-awarded historian and writer Mark Mazower, director of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Public Humanities Initiative (SNFPHI) at Columbia University, will attend the Festival for an intriguing discussion that will take place following the screening of the film Glory Sky.
- The tribute is accompanied by the original exhibition-art installation “Takis Kanellopoulos: I Dream of an Excursion” on Takis Kanellopoulos’ literary and directorial work.
TRIBUTE AND GOLDEN ALEXANDER TO NIKOS PERAKIS
An honorary Golden Alexander to Nikos Perakis by iconic German film director Volker Schöndorff, one of the most singular and daring voices of Greek cinema, for his overall career. In addition, the Festival will host a tribute including five films that bring forth Nikos Perakis’ work as a film director and production designer. Moreover, the Laboratory for the Study of Greek Cinema & Television (LSGCT) will host a colloquium on Nikos Perakis, featuring distinguished academic personalities as speakers.
ΤHE FESTIVAL HONORS THE MEMORY OF MICHEL DIMOPOULOS
The Festival honors the memory of Michel Dimopoulos through a series of initiatives and actions.
– The Golden Alexander of the enhanced and upgraded competition section Meet the Neighbors+ is renamed to “Golden Alexander – Michel Dimopoulos”
– The screening of Victor Erice’s film The Spirit of the Beehive, will be held in memory of Michel Dimopoulos.
– The Festival’s magazine, First Shot, is exclusively dedicated to Michel Dimopoulos and his reviews, articles and analyses.
STORYTELLING TRIBUTE AND MEET THE FUTURE
The narrators of TV and cinema take center stage at the tribute of the 64th Thessaloniki International Film Festival, titled Storytelling. Top-notch writers and screenwriters share their experiences, thoughts and secrets through a series of masterclasses, open to the public, which aim to build a bridge between film and series screenwriting. The masterclasses of the Storytelling tribute will be delivered by: Jeremy Podeswa, Ruth Atkinson, Panayotis Christopoulos, Dora Masklavanou, Dimosthenis Papamarkos. In addition, Meet the Future initiative will present five up-and-coming screenwriters from Greece as part of the Storytelling tribute.
REFLECTIONS OF TOPOS TRIBUTE
The first theme of Survey Expanded, that extends and renews the topics and issues portrayed in the beloved Balkan Survey section, is titled Reflections of Topos, tracing aspects of Southeast Europe as a geographical and symbolic places and locations, as inscribed in the work of an emerging, dynamic generation of artists.
GREEK FILM FESTIVAL
A total of 35 full-length and 22 short Greek films will be screened at the 64th TIFF.
– 23 movies will celebrate their premiere, in the “First Run” and “Crοssing the Borders” sections.
– The Festival and Finos Film will co-host a special screening in the memory of the recently deceased landmark Greek actress Mary Chronopoulou.
– The shorts awarded at the 46th Drama International Short Film Festival will also be screened as part of the Greek Film Festival.
The 64th Thessaloniki International Film Festival is hosting four competition sections, accompanied by substantial cash prizes.
* A total of 11 films take part in the International Competition, among which three Greek films. The IC films have their eyes set on the Golden Alexander “Theo Angelopoulos”, accompanied by a 10,000-euro cash prize, the Silver Alexander – Best Direction Award, backed by a 5,000-euro cash prize granted by COSMOTE TV, the Festival’s Grand Sponsor, the Best Actor Award, the Best Actress Award, as well as the Best Screenplay or Artistic Achievement Award.
* A total of 11 films participate in the Meet the Neighbors+ competition section, among which two Greek films. The MtN+ films are competing for the Golden Alexander “Michel Dimopoulos”, accompanied by a 10,000-euro cash prize, the Silver Alexander – Best Direction Award, accompanied by a 5,000-euro cash prize, theBest Actor Award, the Best Actress Award, as well as the Best Screenplay or Artistic Achievement Award.
* A total of 11 films are in the starting line of the >>Film Forward competition section, among which two Greek films. The >>FF films are contenders for the Golden Alexander, accompanied by a 8,000-euro cash prize and the Silver Alexander – Special Jury Award, accompanied by a 4,000-euro cash prize
* Mastercard is backing the Mermaid Award for the second year in a row, with a 3,000-euro cash prize.
* The Immersive competition section makes a dynamic return, featuring 8 films, competing for the section’s Golden Alexander, accompanied by a 2,000-euro cash prize.
* We discover the most avant-garde voices of today’s cinema in the Open Horizons section and the Open Horizons-Another Take subsection.
* We catch up with our beloved filmmakers in the Special Screenings section.
* We meet up after hours in the ‘Round Midnight zone.
* The 64th TIFF is catching the youth vibe through the NextGen section. The Festival will host educational screenings for schools, at Stavros Tornes theater (Warehouse 1, Post), as well as in Stavroupoli and Sykies, in collaboration with the Municipalities of Pavlos Melas and Neapoli-Sykies, respectively.
* This year, within the framework of the Smart7 alliance between seven European film festivals, TIFF will host a competition section with seven films competing for the Smart7 Award, accompanied by a 5,000-euro cash prize.
HARIS ALEXIOU IS THE AMBASSADOR OF AGORA
- Renowned Greek singer Haris Alexiou, a long-time icon of Greek music who recently impressed us with her acting skills in the theater and the TV, will serve as Agora’s ambassador.
- Agora Series, the new initiative launched by Agora last year, is back in action, with a well-rounded 2-day programme.
- The film industry professionals will have the opportunity to take part in innovative actions and initiatives focused on the future and the support towards upcoming filmmakers.
- The projects selected by Agora are competing for a series of important awards, accompanied either by cash prizes or by services.
Ten Greek-speaking and English-speaking podcasts take part in the Festival’s Podcast Competition, while 19 podcasts are included in the Nexus section. The audience will have the chance to listen to the Festival’s podcasts in the specially configured venue of the Podcast Room, situated in the Thessaloniki Cinema Museum, with a free admission. The podcasts of the Competition section are competing for the Best Podcast Award, accompanied by a 2,000-euro cash prize. In addition, all podcasters aged 25-35 years old, taking part in the Festival, both in the Podcast Competition and the Nexus section, are eligible for the ENS Louis Lumière – French Institute of Greece Award for Upcoming Audio Documentary Creator. All podcasts, as always, will be available for hearing, through the Festival’s website www.filmfestival.gr.
The Accessibility Award, granted by Alpha Bank, will be bestowed for the second year in a row, to either a personality or a film that brings forth issues of unhindered access to the arts. Within the framework of the 64th TIFF two benchmark Greek films will be screened in universally accessible terms: Glory Sky by Takis Kanellopoulos and Living Dangerously by Nikos Perakis.
FOR A MORE SUSTAINABLE FESTIVAL
The 64th Thessaloniki International Film Festival, capitalizing on the experience and knowledge gained thanks to the Evia Film Project, has set the goal of becoming more sustainable every year, by reducing its environmental footprint and raising awareness on the objective of sustainability. This year, amidst a period of rigorous climatic changes and unprecedented phenomena that take a toll on everyone’s lives, aiming to intensify our efforts for a “greener” identity and orientation, the Festival is establishing a 10-euro green fee for its accredited guests and pledges to channel the amount collected for the enhancement of sustainable actions already put into motion. Even the smallest steps can bring forth major changes.
The Festival presents this year’s three special editions:
- The special bilingual edition on Ghosts
- The beloved and innovative Α-Catalog.
- A special edition, in collaboration with Marni Films, on the work of the multifaceted storyboard artist George Tassioulas.
The Festival’s programme, as well as more info on the films, are available at www.filmfestival.gr. The tickets’ presale kicks off on Tuesday October 31st.