The first Rügen International Film Festival is about to get under way
by Vassilis Economou
- The festival on the German island of Rügen, set to unspool from 4-8 October, focuses on screening and promoting the cinema of the Baltic Sea countries
With the tagline “An island full of films”, the first Rügen International Film Festival kicks off on 4 October and will run until 8 October on the German island of Rügen. The popular Baltic Sea tourist destination will host the gathering, which focuses on films from the region and on regional filmmaking, in collaboration with the European Film Academy (EFA). The line-up of the first Rügen IFF comprises 45 feature, short and documentary films that will be screened at ten venues on the island, reflecting its scenic appeal and coastline.
The main competition, entitled “To See the Sea”, includes nine feature films from the Baltic Sea countries that have enjoyed success upon their domestic release but which are still less well known internationally. The selection includes Across the Waters [+see also:
film profile] by Nicolo Donato (Denmark), The Chronicles of Melanie [+see also:
film profile] by Viesturs Kairišs (Latvia/Finland/Czech Republic), The Icebreaker by Nikolay Khomeriki (Russia), Freddy/Eddy [+see also:
film profile] by Tini Tüllmann (Germany), Off the Map [+see also:
film profile] by Tiina Lymi (Finland), Planet Single [+see also:
film profile] by Mitja Okorn (Poland), The Polar Boy by Anu Aun (Estonia), Together For Ever [+see also:
film profile] by Lina Lužyte (Lithuania/Romania) and Small Town Curtains [+see also:
film profile] by Johan Löfstedt (Sweden). An international jury will hand out the main “Sophia” Prize for Best Film, valued at €7,500, during the awards ceremony on 7 October.
Furthermore, the sidebar sections of the first Rügen International Film Festival include the “Islands on Screen” programme, brimming with films that deal with life on islands around the world, and the “Local Heroes” section, which focuses on German and Polish films from the Pomerania region. Also, the EFA is organising a retrospective of films hailing from the Baltic Sea region that have been awarded over the past three decades by the Academy. Finally, the EFA is co-operating on the “A Sunday in the Country” networking initiative, where young filmmakers from countries in the region will get a chance to meet up for a weekend and talk to renowned film-industry experts to discuss their future plans and new projects.
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