The festival season continues in full swing with Locarno, Sarajevo, Venice, Toronto and San Sebastián in close succession. Films supported by IFFR, including by the Hubert Bals Fund and CineMart, are premiering with the IFFR team also present. Take a look to see which films will be making waves!
Arnold is a Model Student
Thai director Sorayos Prapapan premiered his satirical standout Arnold Is A Model Student at Locarno, after the film was supported three times by the Hubert Bals Fund. Redmond Bacon for Dirty Movies praised the film’s “raw sincerity” in asking “whether it’s worth trying to make a genuine difference within the system or to try and exploit it for your own ends.” Austrian sales agent Square Eyes announced they had boarded the film.
Next up on the calendar is the 79th Venice International Film Festival, running from 31 August to 10 September. Two HBF-backed titles screen in the Orizzonti competition “dedicated to films that represent the latest aesthetic and expressive trends.” Chilean director Fernando Guzzoni, whose Carne de perro screened at IFFR 2013, presents Blanquita, a story about an 18-year-old foster home resident, Blanca, who becomes the key witness in a scandal involving kids, politicians and rich men taking part in sex parties. The film received HBF+Europe: Minority Co-production Support in 2019.
Trenque Lauquen is a 250-minute and 12-part feature from Argentinian director Laura Citarella, whose third film, La mujer de los perros, co-directed with Verónica Llinás, screened at IFFR 2015. Cinema Tropical reports: “In her dazzling and enormously pleasurable new opus, director Citarella takes the viewer on a limitless, mercurial journey through stories nested within stories set in and around the Argentinean city of Trenque Lauquen.” The film has also been announced to screen in the main slate at the 60th New York Film Festival after receiving HBF development support in 2016.
Film still: Arnold is a Model Student
Film still: Banquita
Film still: Trenque Lauquen
The Toronto International Film Festival takes place September 8–18. Screening in the Discovery strand is Something You Said Last Night, the debut feature from Canadian-Italian director Luis De Filippis, whose short For Nonna Anna screened at IFFR 2018.The film follows Ren, an unemployed, trans girl in her mid-twenties, and her family on a beach holiday in Florida and was presented at CineMart in 2020, alongside fellow Canadian title The Young Arsonists by Sheila Pye’s which also premieres in Discovery strand.
Brazilian filmmaker Carolina Markowicz’s debut Charcoal is set to premiere in the Platform Competition, shortly before it screens in San Sebastián’s Horizontes Latinos selection. The darkly humorous and thrilling social satire was presented at CineMart in 2018 and follows a rural family struggling to live off the charcoal industry who offer to shelter a fugitive. Markowicz remarked to Variety: “There’s no ‘absurd’ anymore. Charcoal is my trial, to understand that.”
La hija de todas las rabias has been labelled the first narrative feature directed by a Nicaraguan female filmmaker, Laura Baumeister. Her debut was supported through four HBF funding schemes, including those in collaboration with the Netherlands Film Fund and Creative Europe, and was part of the BoostNL development programme in collaboration with the Netherlands Film Festival. A mother-daughter relationship within a powerful social drama in the bleakest of locations, a rubbish dump, the film will also screen at San Sebastián where it was shown previously in the works in progress section.
A remote beach full of molluscs, birds and reptiles is the setting for Ecuadorian director Ana Cristina Barragán’s La piel pulpo, which has its world premiere on the closing night of the Basque festival in the Horizontes Latinos strand. With her debut Alba screening at IFFR 2016, this latest film was presented at CineMart in 2017 and received support on two occasions from the HBF for development and through the HBF+Europe scheme. The festival runs 16 to 24 September, where Charcoal and La hija de todas las rabias also screen.
La jauría by Colombian director Andrés Ramírez Pulido, winner of the Grand Prix and the Prix SACD in the Semaine de la Critique at Cannes, also screens at San Sebastián and Toronto.
Film still: The Young Arsonists
Film still: Charcoal
Film still: La hija de todas las rabias
Film still: Something You Said Last night
The IFFR team attends many professional events throughout the year, working with partner festivals, markets and labs to nominate the first emerging producers for our training workshop Rotterdam Lab at IFFR 2023. The Rotterdam Lab Award at Locarno’s Open Doors went to Peruvian producer Illari Orccottoma from Lima-based company Maldeojos. Colombian producer César Rodríguez of Vaya Films won the same award at the Bogotá Audiovisual Market in July, as did Senegalise producer Katy Lena Ndiaye at the Durban FilmMart, Sudanese producer Rua Osman at the Beirut Cinema Platform, and Polish producer Magdalena Sztorc from Karlovy Vary.
Meet the team
Members of the team will be in attendance at all the above festivals. Our festival director Vanja Kaludjercic sits on the jury of the Sarajevo Film Festival (12–19 August) as well as San Sebastián. If you want to plan a meeting or say hello, get in touch with the relevant departments at: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected] or [email protected]
Rotterdam Lab Award presentation at Open Doors Locarno
Rotterdam Lab Award at Karlovy Vary Film Festival
IFFR’s Cannes 2022 round-up
Read reaction to Hubert Bals Fund-supported titles at Cannes, with awards and more.