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LECCE 2017

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The European Film Festival in Lecce celebrates its 18th birthday with Frears, Holland and Mastandrea

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- Isabella Ferrari, Citto Maselli and Nuri Bilge Ceylan are some of the other guests at the gathering set to unspool in Lecce from 3-8 April; 12 European titles are vying for the Golden Olive Tree

The European Film Festival in Lecce celebrates its 18th birthday with Frears, Holland and Mastandrea
Stephen Frears, Agnisezka Holland and Valerio Mastandrea, three of the guests of honour at the upcoming 18th European Film Festival in Lecce

The line-up of the 18th European Film Festival in Lecce, set to unspool from 3-8 April 2017, was presented in Rome this morning. The press conference opened with a reflection on the difficult times facing Europe and on cinema as a means of celebrating shared roots. To mark its coming of age, the festival headed by Alberto La Monica and Cristina Soldano – which will get under way with a tribute to Totò 50 years on from his passing, with the premiere of the restored version of Sergio Corbucci’s Who Hesitates Is Lost – will boast six guests of honour this year. In addition to Champions of European Cinema Agnieszka Holland and Nuri Bilge Ceylan (see the news), Stephen Frears will also be in attendance to meet the audience in Lecce and collect the Golden Olive Tree for Lifetime Achievement; a number of successful titles by the British director will be rescreened, including Dangerous Liaisons, High FidelityPhilomena [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Stephen Frears
film profile
]
and his most recent effort, Florence Foster Jenkins [+see also:
trailer
making of
film profile
]
. Meanwhile, the Champions of Italian Cinema will be Valerio Mastandrea, the fresh recipient of the David di Donatello Award for Best Supporting Actor (for Fiore [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
Q&A: Claudio Giovannesi
film profile
]
), actress Isabella Ferrari (Quiet Chaos [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Antonello Grimaldi
interview: Domenico Procacci
film profile
]
, A Perfect Day [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, The Great Beauty [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Paolo Sorrentino
festival scope
film profile
]
) and director Citto Maselli, whose Time of Indifference, Open Letter to the Evening News, The Suspect and The Red Shadows [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, among other titles, will be screened.

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There are 12 titles having their national premieres that will also be competing for the Golden Olive Tree, and the Fipresci, Cineuropa and SNGCI Awards: they range from youth-orientated stories such as the Irish movie A Date for Mad Mary [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Darren Thornton, the Danish title In the Blood [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Rasmus Heisterberg
film profile
]
by Rasmus Heisterberg, the Belgian-Macedonian co-production When the Day Had No Name [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Teona Strugar Mitevska
film profile
]
by Teona Mitevska and France’s A Taste of Ink [+see also:
trailer
film focus
interview: Morgan Simon
film profile
]
by Morgan Simon, to discussions on family dynamics in Georgia’s My Happy Family [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Nana Ekvtimishvili, Simon G…
film profile
]
by Nana and Simon, an exploration of domestic violence in Germany’s Hands of a Mother [+see also:
trailer
interview: Florian Eichinger
film profile
]
by Florian Eichinger and communication problems in Austria’s Home is Here [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Tereza Kotyk
film profile
]
by Tereza Kotyk. Then we have Albüm [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Mehmet Can Mertoglu
film profile
]
by Mehmet Can Mertoglu (Turkey/France/Romania), Framing Mom [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Sara Johnsen (Germany/Denmark/Norway), The Constitution [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Rajko Grlić
film profile
]
by Rajko Grlic (Croatia/Czech Republic/Slovenia), Forest, 4am. [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Poland’s Jan Jakub Kolski and Living and Other Fictions [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jo Sol
film profile
]
by Spaniard Jo Sol

Also of note is the section dedicated to European comedies, with five works having their Italian premieres: The Bloom of Yesterday [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Chris Kraus, The Carer [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Janos Edelenyi, Tiger Theory [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Radek Bajgar, Vincent and the End of the World [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Christophe Van Rompaey and The Migrumpies by Arman T Riahi. Meanwhile, the Cinema and Reality section will give pride of place to important social topics, with Another Me [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Claudio Casazza, about the first prison experiment revolving around “intensified treatment” for those found guilty of sexual violence, Silenzi e parole by Peter Marcias and Austerlitz [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Sergei Loznitsa, among others.

As is customary, the European Film Festival will play host to the Mario Verdone Award (see the news): the finalists for this eighth edition are Marco Danieli for Worldly Girl [+see also:
film review
trailer
making of
film focus
interview: Marco Danieli
film profile
]
, Fabio Guaglione and Fabio Resinaro for Mine [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, and Michele Vannucci for I Was a Dreamer [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Alessandro Borghi
interview: Michele Vannucci
film profile
]
; a special accolade will also be awarded to Gabriele Mainetti for They Call Me Jeeg [+see also:
trailer
making of
film focus
interview: Gabriele Mainetti
film profile
]
, “an outstanding film that has opened up new avenues”, according to Carlo Verdone. Furthermore, for the fifth year running, the Emidio Greco Award will be given out, a prize intended to reward a young Italian for his or her talent in making a short film.

Lastly, audiences at Lecce will be able to (re-)discover the three finalists for the 2016 LUX Prize: the winner, Toni Erdmann [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
Q&A: Maren Ade
film profile
]
by Maren Ade, As I Open My Eyes [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Leyla Bouzid
film profile
]
by Leyla Bouzid and My Life as a Zucchini [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Claude Barras
film profile
]
by Claude Barras.

(Translated from Italian)

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