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Bright Future main programme selections

The selection of the Bright Future main programme of IFFR is announced today. Aimed to highlight original, up-and-coming directors with an own style and vision, the programme contains 11 world premieres (WP) and 12 international premieres (IP) from all corners of the world. These include several filmmakers who have previously competed in the Hivos Tiger Awards Competition, such as Elisa Miller, Park Hongmin, Tsubota Yoshifumi but also many first feature films.

As of the upcoming edition, filmmakers premiering a first feature work in the main or thematic programme of Bright Future, will be celebrated with a new award: the Bright Future Award. The award comprises €10,000, to be spent on the development of a next film project. These include three films from Bright Future's thematic programme ID:Gender.net, listed below.

A jury of three film industry and film festival professionals will decide who will receive the award. They include Polish distributor and New Horizons festival leader, Roman Gutek and Paris based Fiorella Moretti of newly established sales company Luxbox.
Further to that, all Bright Future main programme films in world premiere will be seen and judged by the annual Fipresci jury.

The programme is as colourful as world cinema itself. It includes Alba, an impressive Hubert Bals Fund supported coming-of-ager from Ecuador as well as Emiliano Rocha's post-apocalyptic and horrifying vision of Mexico, Tenemos la carne. It ranges from animated historical docu-drama NUTS! (USA) to Tsubota Yoshifumi's sensuous drama The Shell Collector (Japan). And from the romantic dynamics in Out of Love (The Netherlands) to a humoristic, crisis-proof example of Spain's new cinema, Esa sensación.

The selection of highlights from the past festival year, include Paradise (Iran), Kaili Blues (China), Montanha (Portugal) and Thirst (Bulgaria). 

Films eligible for the Bright Future Award: 

Alba, Ana Cristina Barragán (Ecuador / Mexico / Greece) WP  Alba, 11 years old, has to move to her estranged father when her mother has to be taken to the hospital.
Animal político, Tião (Brazil) WP A cow tries to convince herself she is happy. One night, on Christmas Eve, the cow experiences a deep feeling of emptiness. The crisis makes her want to start a journey of enlightenment.
The Bear Tales Samuele Sestieri, Olmo Amato (Italy/ Finland/Norway) IP A mechanical monk follows a strange little red man through forests, dead cities and desolate plains.
Bodkin Ras Kaweh Modiri  (Netherlands) WP A stranger - Bodkin Ras - arrives in Forres, Scotland. He has come to this remote corner of Europe to hide and lay low. A mosaic of a small town and the human soul.
Communication & Lies Lee Seung-won (South Korea) IP Interior scars in a woman and a man lead to strange, destructive behaviour. 
Fado Jonas Rothlaender (Germany / Portugal) IP Young doctor Fabian travels to Lisbon on the spur of the moment to win back his former girlfriend Doro.
Jacqueline (Argentine) Bernardo Britto (USA) IP A young French woman contacts a filmmaker to follow her whistleblowing activities from her remote, self-imposed political asylum in Argentina.
Of Shadows Yi Cui  (China / Canada) WP Follows a resilient group of shadow play performers as they navigate between the rural staging of ancient plays and the urban spectacles of cultural heritage preservation.
Out of Love Paloma Aguilera Valdebenito (Netherlands) WP Out of Love encapsulates the sweltering and devastating dynamics of love in the turbulent relationship between Varya and Nikolai.
Pacífico Fernanda Romandía (Mexico) WP Around the construction of a house designed by architect Tadao Ando on the beaches of Puerto Escondido Mexico, the film emerges from the stories of the characters.
The Sprawl Metahaven (Netherlands) WP Visualises an architecture for political activism and propaganda - from Ebola to the Ukraine and IS.
The Strange Case of Shiva Arun Karthick (India) IP Shiva, a lonely designer gets obsessed with an image from a random encounter. Caught in a web of voyeuristic delusions he awaits release by an arrival, from somewhere. 
Tenemos la carne Emiliano Rocha Minter (Mexico / France) WP After wandering a ruined city for years, two siblings find their way into one of the last remaining buildings. Inside, they find a man who will make them a dangerous offer.

Eligible for Bright Future Award, presented in ID:Gender.net

Las lindas Melisa Liebenthal (Argentina) WP Playful autobiographical reconstruction of young filmmaker Melisa Liebenthal coming of age, in which she tries to unravel some essential questions of life. 
Strange Love Natasha Mendonca (India) WP Transgender Khush and musician Suman'’s lifes cross in a hybrid, contemporary portrait of the metropolis of Mumbai. 
Outfitumentary K8 Hardy (USA) WP For over ten years, performance artist Hardy recorded her daily outfits: an examination of weird and coded  fashion statements of a young lesbian.

Other films premiering in Bright Future

Alone Park Hongmin (South Korea) IP A man seems unable to escape a web of nightmares and memories, unable to wake up or to find his way out of his past, in this haunting second feature of the director of A Fish.
The Dork, the Girl and the Douchebag Yosuke Okuda (Japan) IP A drug dealer habitually cons women out of money but one day he traps a woman not knowing she works for a Yakuza...…
Esa sensación
Juan Cavestany / Pablo Hernando / Julián Génisson (Spain) WP A woman is romantically involved with a series of objects and a man wants to find out about his fath’er's secret, while a virus spreads around town making people say and do things involuntarily. Three intertwined stories about love, faith and human will.
The Island Funeral Pimpaka Towira (Thailand) EP A young Bangkok woman of Muslim origins embarks on a road trip to southern Thailand to look for her long-lost aunt.
Lowlife Love Uchida Eiji (Japan) IP Tetsuo is a film director who had an indie hit many years back, but refuses to go against his artistic integrity - so he gets by exploiting his friends, family & the students of his acting school.
Mama Vlado Skafar  (Slovenia / Italy) WP A Mother takes her self-destructive daughter to a deserted village in a foreign country (Italy) and locks her in a house. What begins as a mother's desperate attempt to save her child turns into an increasingly miraculous spiritual adventure, restoring the deep feelings of life within her.
NUTS! Penny Lane (USA) IP The mostly-animated, mostly-true story of John Romulus Brinkley, a small town Kansas doctor who in 1917 discovers that he can cure impotence by transplanting goat testicles into men.
Operation Avalanche Matt Johnson (USA) IP In 1967, four undercover CIA agents were sent to NASA posing as a documentary film crew…
El placer es mío Elisa Miller (Mexico) IP Miller (Vete mas lejos, Alicia) returns to fiction with this powerful drama about two lovebirds who take refuge in the apparent tranquility of his father’s country house.
The Plague at the Karatas Village
Adilkhan Yerzhanov (Kazakhstan) WP This new film by Yerzhanov (The Owners) shows he is becoming one of the strongest voices in new Kazakh cinema. A young mayor is sent from the City to manage a remote village named Karatas. 
The Shell Collector Tsubota Yoshifumi (Japan) WP Director of Miyoko (Tiger Competition 2010) returns with this visually stunning drama starring Lily Franky as a blind conchology scholar living a peaceful, solitary existence on a remote island until a female painter appears.

Highlights from 2015

Bella e perduta Pietro Marcello (Italy) Fusing documentary and fantasy, this film about the dire state Italy is in has it all: a young buffalo, Pulcinella and a truly modest hero.
The Daughter Simon Stone (Australia) A man returns to his hometown and unearths a secret from long ago.
Évolution Lucile Hadžihalilovic (France/ Belgium/ Spain) Young boys are subjected to a strange medical treatment, in this gorgeous, dark allegory.
The Here After Magnus von Horn (Poland / Sweden / France) When a young man returns home to his father after serving time in prison, he finds his crime is neither forgotten nor forgiven.
Kaili Blues Bi Gan (China) A country doctor’s travels, dreams and memories hypnotize the viewer in this debut from southern China.
Last Man in Dhaka Central Naeem Mohaiemen (Bangladesh/USA/Netherlands) As a Maoist soldiers uprising collapsed in Bangladesh in 1975, Dutch journalist Peter Custers entered jail as one of the accused; the last man and remaining witness.
Montanha João Salaviza (Portugal / France) A hot summer in Lisbon. David (14) awaits the imminent death of his grandfather, but refuses to visit him, fearing this terrible loss.
Le Moulin Huang Ya-li (Taiwan) Aesthetically sophisticated reconstruction of Taiwan's first modern art group 'Le Moulin' in the 1930s.
Paradise Sina Ataeian Dena, Iran/ Germany) Exhausted by bureaucracy and her everyday life teaching in the far away suburbs of Tehran, Hanieh struggles to find her way.
Il solengo Matteo Zoppis / Alessio Rigo de Righi  (Italy/Argentina) In the remote Lazio countryside, an area bound to old traditions, a group of hunters recalls the life of Mario the hermit, known as “il Solengo”.
Suite Armoricaine Pascale Breton (France) An art history professor returns to work in her home town Rennes.
Thirst Svetla Tsotsorkova (Bulgaria) Confident debut is realist fable set in rural Bulgaria.
Tikkun Avishai Sivan (Israel) A young man from the ultra-orthodox Jewish community suffers a crisis of faith after a strange accident.
Toponimia Jony Perel, (Argentina) Celebrated structural documentary on four villages in northern Argentina.
Las vacas con gafas
Alex Santiago Pérez, (Puerto Rico) Winner of the Curaçao IFFR 2015 Yellow Robin award.  A lonely, eccentric painter is suffering from an illness that will turn him blind.
The Waiting Room Igor Drljaca (Canada) Once a successful actor in his home country Bosnia, a man has to face reality in Toronto.