opening of the 63rd Thessaloniki Film Festival, “women” in the spotlight

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Thessaloniki (Greece) (AFP) – The 63rd edition of the Thessaloniki International Film Festival (TIFF) opens on Thursday night in the northern Greek metropolis and will be dedicated to “the representation of women”, according to its director Elise Jalladeau.

With a duration of ten days, this annual film meeting offers “an ambitious program with around 200 films, four competitions, retrospectives and tributes”, the French Elise Jalladeau, general director of this organization for six years, receives AFP.

Eleven films participate in the international competition. The reward for the first prize, the Alejandro de Oro, amounts to 10,000 euros, according to the organizers’ press release.

The latest film from American director Steven Spielberg, The Fabelmans, already awarded at the Toronto International Film Festival and undoubtedly well positioned for the Oscars, marks the opening ceremony on Thursday night at 20:00 local time (18 :00 GMT).

The French director and actress Charlotte Gainsbourg will attend the festival for the screening of her latest film “Passengers of the Night” by Mikhaël Hers, where she plays the main role, as well as the German director Fatih Akin to present his recent film “L’o del Rin (Rheingold).

After two years of the pandemic, “the challenges are important for the festival but also for the cinema as an industry”, estimates Elise Jalladeau, highlighting the current challenges in the sector that range from “the tsunami of platforms” to “concentration” or ” risk of loss of cultural diversity”.

“Other challenges are also important to us, including the issues of accessibility (…), inclusion, representation of women that we have focused on this year,” she adds.

A tribute to “two great figures” of the country’s industry is planned, Maria Plyta, the first Greek director (1915-2006) and Maria Gavala, author and theoretician of the seventh art, according to Elise Jalladeau.

On the occasion of “back to normality”, the festival chose as its main theme this year, in homage to the Greek director Théo Angelopoulos who died 10 years ago, the title of his first film, “Reconstitution” (1970).

“Now we are seeing the fruits of this reconstruction operation with a + normal + festival for the public, with lightened health protocols and a massive return of viewers to theaters”, summarizes Elise Jalladeau.

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