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ZURICH 2022

The Zurich Film Festival unveils the programme for its 18th edition

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- "We’re thrilled to be welcoming more stars than ever this year", enthuses the festival's artistic director Christian Jungen

The Zurich Film Festival unveils the programme for its 18th edition
A Forgotten Man by Laurent Nègre

Three high-profile actors (Ben Kingsley, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Eddie Redmayne) will be attending this year’s Zurich Film Festival in order to collect three prizes: the Golden Icon Award, which will be bestowed upon the veteran British actor, and the Golden Eye Lifetime Achievement accolade which will go to the French actress and British actor alike.

Whilst an impressive défilé of stars has always been a strong point of the festival, according to artistic director Christian Jungen, who enthuses that the team "are thrilled to be welcoming more stars than ever this year", the promotion of emerging filmmakers (with an impressive 49 first works featuring in this year’s edition) and of Swiss film is also one of his priorities. Of the 156 films hailing from 49 countries making up the programme of this 18th edition (running 22 September – 2 October), 18 are Swiss productions (including 7 Romandy works, which is a record for the Zurich-based festival). Jostling amongst these is the world premiere of A Forgotten Man by Geneva’s Laurent Nègre - who adapted Swiss writer Thomas Hürlimann’s book “L’Ambassadeur”, whilst also adding some new and highly sensitive facts - and the screening of Golden Years by Swiss-Hungarian director Barbara Kulcscar.

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The Focus section, hosting a selection of films hailing from Germany, Austria and Switzerland, consists of 14 films, all of which are first, second or third works (10 first works feature in the Focus Competition alone). Titles gracing this line-up include David Wagner’s Austrian movie Eismayer [+see also:
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which triumphed in Venice’s Film Critics’ Week and which explores the torments of a military drill instructor wrestling with his own homosexuality, and Laura Kaer’s Swiss documentary Becoming Giulia, which tells the tale of the dancer and star of the Zurich Opera, Giulia Tondelli.

There’s a considerable quantity of European (co)productions in the Fiction Competition. These include British work Blue Jean [+see also:
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by Georgia Oakley, which homes in on English culture at the end of the eighties, a dark time for the LGBTIQ+ community, and Aftersun [+see also:
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a poignant yet disturbing movie about memories by Charlotte Wells (UK/USA). The same competition also features Something You Said Last Night [+see also:
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interview: Luis De Filippis
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(Canada/Switzerland) by Luis De Filippis, revolving around a young transgender man trying to find a balance between his desire for independence and the comfort of the family nest, Polish movie Fucking Bornholm [+see also:
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interview: Anna Kazejak
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]
by Anna Kazejak, which shines a light on the contradictions and hypocrisy of a middle-class family, Spanish work Suro [+see also:
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, in which Mikel Gurrea recounts the journey embarked upon by a couple as they move from the city to the countryside, Denmark’s Unruly [+see also:
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by Malou Reymann, which brings one of the darkest periods in the country’s history to life, The Cake Dynasty by Danish director Christian Lollike, which tells the tale of a man who decides to convert to Islam, The Kings of the World [+see also:
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by Laura Mora, depicting the quest for justice and happiness of five kids from Medellin, Return To Seoul [+see also:
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interview: Davy Chou
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]
by Davy Chou, revolving around a search for roots, Until Tomorrow [+see also:
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by Ali Asgari which recounts the daily life of a teenage mum wresting with Iran’s patriarchal value system, and Valeria Is Getting Married by Israeli director Michal Vinik, which homes in on organised marriages between Ukrainian women and Israeli men.

The Documentary Competition also boasts a high number of European (co)productions, including A Taste of Whale [+see also:
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interview: Vincent Kelner
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]
by France’s Vincent Kelner, which looks into whale hunting on the Faroe Islands, as well as Matt Sarnecki’s Danish-American-Czech co-production The Killing of a Journalist [+see also:
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interview: Matt Sarnecki
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]
. Finland and the UK are also in the game, with two films each: The Mission [+see also:
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]
by Tania Anderson, about a group of four young Mormons, and The New Greatness Case [+see also:
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]
by Russia’s Anna Shishova, which explores a mother’s battle to free her daughter who is accused of extremism; and then the incredible story told by Jono McLeod in My Old School [+see also:
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, and Hide and Seek [+see also:
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by Italy’s Victoria Fiore, which depicts the contradictions inherent to living in a city as complex as Naples. Last but not least, there’s A Provincial Hospital [+see also:
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interview: Ilian Metev, Ivan Chertov a…
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]
, a co-production between Bulgaria and Germany by Ilian Metev, Ivan Chertov and Zlatina Teneva, which opens a window onto daily life in a Bulgarian hospital, All That Breathes [+see also:
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interview: Shaunak Sen
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]
by Shaunak Sen (India/UK), which scooped Cannes’ Golden Eye trophy, and Mike Day’s Cowboy Poets (USA/UK).

This year’s New World View section, meanwhile, will be devoted to Spanish cinema, boasting no less than 18 films and also celebrating the tenth anniversary of the festival’s strategic collaboration with the San Sebastian Film Festival.

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(Translated from Italian)

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