IFFR 2021 first programme announcements

10 November 2020

50th International Film Festival Rotterdam

Our 50th-anniversary edition will be an expanded celebration that is expressed locally, (inter)nationally, in-person and online. Here’s the first look at the programme with competitions, Vive le cinéma! at Eye Filmmuseum, Tiger on the Loose and more.

1 – 7 February

IFFR’s new competition structure will be presented in February, with a larger selection of films in the flagship Tiger Competition and the Big Screen Competition. The Ammodo Tiger Short Competition maintains its position as the focus point for short films. All competition winners will be announced at the IFFR Awards Ceremony on 7 February.

Our first Limelight lineup will feature in February. Limelight is our programme of Avant-premieres and cinematic highlights of the year, which always features international award-winners and festival favourites that later release in Dutch theatres. 

Tiger on the Loose
Public space programme Tiger on the Loose, part of Art Directions, gives locals and visitors the chance to discover interactive art installations mapped across the city of Rotterdam. They will find a tiger-inspired surprise at 50 outdoor locations that form a route to follow. The project is a collaboration with Rotterdam studio VollaersZwart.

IFFR Plays Back ◀◀
Reflecting on 50 years and captured in short films, visitors share their best IFFR stories, while past Tiger-winning filmmakers share a creative tribute to the festival. IFFR Plays Back ◀◀ films will be available to watch on A selection of 25 visitor stories will also be officially archived with Stadsarchief Rotterdam.

IFFR 100
IFFR exhibits 100 festival posters: 50 from the archive, next to 50 from the future. Each edition’s official poster, from the very first designed by Evert Maliangkay to 75B’s latest adaptation of the tiger, will be presented next to designs by Willem de Kooning Academy students who imagine the visual language of IFFR for the next 50 years. IFFR 100 will be presented on and as a projection on the prominent Rotterdam cinema Pathé Schouwburgplein. 

IFFR in Groningen
We’re also celebrating 25 years of IFFR in Groningen. Since 1997, Forum Groningen has programmed a pocket edition of IFFR simultaneously during the festival in Rotterdam, showing a cross-section of the best films on the big screen.

Between February and June

IFFR Unleashed: 50/50
Following the first chapter in February, our online streaming platform IFFR Unleashed will keep the festival spirit going with its own 50th-edition offering. The 50/50 collection will be made up of 50 ‘programmer’s favourite’ films, one selected from each IFFR edition. Confirmed titles include The Cow directed by Dariush Mehrjui (IFFR 1972) and It Felt Like Love by Eliza Hittman (IFFR 2013).

Vive le cinéma! – Art & Film at Eye Filmmuseum
In collaboration with Eye Filmmusuem celebrating their 75th anniversary in 2021, we will present an exhibition on art and film. Iconic filmmakers with a history at IFFR, Nanouk Leopold & Daan Emmen (Beeldcollectief Leopold Emmen), Lucrecia Martel, Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese, Carlos Reygadas and Jia Zhang-Ke, have each been commissioned to produce a work for the exhibition space, to be accompanied by a series of film screenings and talks.

IFFR’s programme celebrating Rotterdam filmmaking, RTM, will be presented in a larger format at LantarenVenster. As usual, it will feature a selection of new titles, classics and archive material by local makers.

Cinema Regained with mini-symposium
A mini-symposium will be presented as part of Cinema Regained, our programme dedicated to living film history and restoration classics, films about film and filmmakers, experimental work and installations.

2 – 6 June

Harbour and Bright Future
IFFR will present its newest and largest programme Harbour for the first time in June. This programme is representative of the multidimensional nature of Rotterdam and its festival as a safe haven. It is the main base for the diverse and quality films we want to show to the world. Bright Future, our programme dedicated to emerging film talent, will also get its own space in June.

Anniversary programme
‘IFFR’s anniversary programme’ taps into the rich history of IFFR by inviting luminaries of the last five decades to enter a dialogue with fresh names and faces. They will discuss what they believe IFFR should be as a festival, both now and for the next 50 years.

More programme announcements coming soon!

See our first 50th festival edition teaser

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