Sandra den Hamer leaves Rotterdam

Festival Director Sandra den Hamer leaves Rotterdam

Sandra den Hamer

Sandra den Hamer leaves the International Film Festival Rotterdam to become, as of September 1, 2007 Director of the Filmmuseum in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Den Hamer has been involved in the festival organisation since 1986. One of the best attended cultural events in The Netherlands, the festival is well known internationally for its selective programming and for its CineMart and Hubert Bals Fund.

The Board of the Rotterdam Film Festival, chaired by Melle Daamen, director of the Stadsschouwburg (Municipal Theatre) in Amsterdam, will soon start exploratory talks that should result in the appointment of a new Festival Director.

In 1986, Sandra den Hamer is appointed by festival founder Huub Bals to lead the CineMart. During the festival, this market offers film makers the opportunity to present their projects to sales agents, funding bodies and distributors in order to find co-financiers. Twenty years on, this initiative has grown out to become the largest co-production market for low and medium budget film projects. Each year, around nine hundred film professionals attend CineMart to meet with the representatives of the forty-five selected film projects.

Furthermore, Sandra den Hamer brings another of Bals’ initiatives to prosperity: the fund, named after him after his death, that supports film makers in southern countries during the development stage of their projects. Over the course of twenty years more then six hundred fiction feature films have been realized with the financial support of the Hubert Bals Fund. Among the many successful films is FOUR MONTHS, THREE WEEKS AND TWO DAYS by Cristian Mungiu (Romania), selected for the upcoming Cannes Competition 2007.

By 1991, Sandra den Hamer is appointed Deputy Director of the Rotterdam Film Festival next to Emile Fallaux. Since 2000, Sandra co-directs the IFFR with Simon Field and is appointed sole Director of the festival in March 2004. Sandra den Hamer’s contributions to the success of the festival are important. Through the years she determined and realized a clear artistic and business course for all festival activities in close collaboration with many international partners and the Festival Staff.

The International Film Festival Rotterdam is highly reputed for its selective programming of upcoming talents, innovative and experimental feature films, short films and visual art. Together with Toronto and Berlin, Rotterdam forms the Top-3 of largest film festivals by public attendance. The festival has grown into an influential film event with a high artistic and cultural-economic significance for international independent cinema as well as for the city of Rotterdam and The Netherlands.