“Wolf Totem” by Jean-Jacques Annaud will be presented on March 22nd at Teatro Petruzzelli, in the Bif&st section InternationalPremières. During the soirée, the film director will receive the Fipresci 90 Award by the hands of the Fipresci President. That same morning at the Petruzzelli, Annaud will hold a Master Class moderated by an authoritative French cinema critic.
The 6th edition of the Bif&st – Bari International Film Festival, chaired by Ettore Scola and directed by its creator Felice Laudadio, promoted by the Apulia Region and produced by Apulia Film Commission – will be held March 21st to 28th, 2015.
The movie, entirely set in China, tells the story of Chen Zhen, a young Beijing student, who is sent to the inner outbreaks of Mongolia to educate a nomad tribe of cattle breeders. Getting in touch with a reality much different from his own, Chen discovers that he is the one who still has to learn a lot: about community, freedom, and notably about the wolf; the most revered creature of the steppe. Seduced by the shepherds’ bond with the wolves and fascinated by the shrewdness and strength of this animal, one day Cheng finds a wolf cub and decides to domesticate it. The mighty bond which grows between the two, will be endangered by the ruthless decision of a Government officer: to exterminate, at all costs, every single wolf of the region. Italian cinema halls will screen the film, released by Notorious Pictures, on March 26th.
The documentary film by Brett Morgen, “Cobain: Montage of Heck” will be presented in Italian Première at Bif&st, Saturday March 21st at 4 pm at Teatro Petruzzelli (entry fee: € 1,00). The film will then be released by Universal Pictures International Italy on the 24th and 25th of March. It is the first fully-authorized documentary film about the Nirvana band leader Kurt Cobain, icon of the music history of the Nineties. The film, produced by Frances Bean Cobain, daughter of Cobain and Courtney Love, leads us right into the frontman’s private archive, with mostly unreleased materials: thoughts, words, unheard music, pictures and footages never seen before, intertwined with interviews to friends and relatives. In the first part of the film, drawings and art sketches by Cobain himself, are interchanged with computer animations realized by the director.
Nicknamed “the mad scientist” of documentary filmmaking, Brett Morgen worked over this project for eight years: writing, producing, directing and supervising the editing.
9 Academy Award Nominations were granted to one of the most fortunate movies screened in the Teatro Petruzzelli of Bari in occasion of Bif&st 2014 - held April 5th to 12th last year. The Grand Budapest Hotel by Wes Anderson has been nominated to the most prestigious cinema awards in the world for Best Picture, Best Directing, Best Writing (Original Screenplay), Best Cinematography, Best Music, Best Production Design, Best Editing, Best Makeup, and… dulcis in fundo, for Best Costume Design, realized by legendary Italian costume designer Milena Canonero, whom – after winning Three Academy Awards, the first of which in 1976 for Barry Lyndon by Stanley Kubrick – is currently at her 9th nomination. Over the last days, Hollywood had already awarded The Grand Budapest Hotel with the Foreign Press Golden Globe for Best Comedy.
But, for the movies of Bif&st 2014, there is more: among the five shortlisted for Best Foreign Language Film, there is also the winner of the sole Award for Best Director of the International Panorama section – assigned in Bari to the Georgian director Zaza Urushadze’s Tangerines, by the audience Jury chaired by director Francesco Bruni.
Bif&st joins the entire Italian and International Cinema in the sore grieving caused by the parting of a great father and mentor: Francesco Rosi. Bif&st – Bari International Film Festival (March 21st to 28th, 2015) chaired by Ettore Scola and directed by Felice Laudadio, announces a series of events to celebrate and remember his work and commitment. Together with the Bologna Film Library and the Teche RAI, a vast retrospective of his works will be organised, and it will include the two films recently restored: Salvatore Giuliano by the Bologna Film Library and Hands over the City by National Film Library.
In 2010 Rosi had received, by the very hands of Ettore Scola, the Federico Fellini Award for Artistic Excellence. But Rosi happened also to be the protagonist of the last Bif&st edition, given his long lasting collaboration with Gian Maria Volonté, to whom the 2014 Festival dedicated the widest retrospective ever realized. In that occasion, Rosi had released to the Festival one of his last interviews, which is now part of the Documentary Rosi racconta Volonté, which will be screened again in the upcoming edition of the Festival, together with plenty of unpublished materials.
Georgian director Zaza Urushadze’s “Tangerines” is running for the 87th Academy Awards, that will be assigned February 22nd in Los Angeles. The Estonian-Georgian movie was selected among the 9 shortlisted for the Best Foreign Language Film.
Last April, Tangerines received the International Bif&st Award, assigned by an audience Jury chaired by director Francesco Bruni – with the following citation: “The movie has the great value of dealing, in a simple yet refined way, with the nonsense of war: especially when it happens between people who have the same face, speak the same language, and often find it extremely hard to perceive themselves as enemies. Here two soldiers, one Abkhazian and the other Georgian, both severely wounded, are sheltered under the same roof by an old and patient Estonian peasant. While forced to live together, they share many minor moments of the day – and the fierce hate among them is destined to become meaningless – for you can only hate what you do not know.” Right after, Zaza Urushadze released the following declaration: “I warmly thank you for this extraordinary Award. It is an authentic privilege to me. It is an honour granted not only to myself, but to the entirety of both Georgian and Estonian Cinema. Gratitude and best wishes for your Festival from us all”.
Another movie triumphantly welcomed and awarded at Bari which has recently gained International recognition is: La mafia uccide solo d’estate by Pif (Pierfrancesco Diliberto). The film, which has just received the European Film Award for Best Comedy of 2014, won the Francesco Laudadio Award for First Time Director. The prize was assigned by an Audience Jury chaired by director Giuliano Montaldo, with the following citation: “For the touching novelty with which the movie deals with the theme of mafia – through a biting and ironical, mostly incisive and head on style”. On that occasion, Pif starred in the crowded Bif&st 2014 closing Cinema Masterclass with Andrea Camilleri at Teatro Petruzzelli.
The 6th Bif&st edition will take place March 21st to 28th, 2015 and it will showcase a real full immersion in the great cinema of Fritz Lang and Francesco Rosi. Ettore Scola is President of the Festival, ideated and directed by Felice Laudadio.
A vast Retrospective, curated by Laudadio and by History of film scholar Carlo di Carlo, will be dedicated to the author of Metropolis, M, the trilogy of Dr. Mabuse, Fury and Hangmen Also Die, who had to run away from Germany since the early beginnings of the Nazi Regime in 1933 and died almost 40 years ago (August 2nd, 1976). The Retrospective, which benefits from the cooperation of the National Film Library and of the Bologna Film Library, includes almost the entirety of both the German and American films realized by the Austro-Ungaric director. The Retrospective will feature up to 60 titles, including the renowned edition of Metropolis – newly edited, color dyed and with a score composed by Italian composer Giorgio Moroder (three times Academy Award Winner) together with iconographic and documentary materials coming both from the Apulia Regional Mediatheque and from RAI Teche.
As always, the Festival will also be a window over the best of the current cinema. The Teatro Petruzzelli will host evening screenings of the non-competing International Premières: eight movies of great spectacular appeal and most recent production; together with 12 titles of the Panorama International competing section: movies produced all over the world during last year and absolutely unreleased in Italy before – to be screened at the Teatro Petruzzelli during the afternoon. A Jury, composed by 30 thoroughly selected spectators and chaired by producer and distributor Valerio De Paolis (founder of the BIM Company), will assign the Bif&st 2015 Award to the best movie among the ones selected with director Enrico Magrelli.
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