After 15 editions Felice Laudadio leaves the direction of Bif&st, the Bari International Film&Tv Festival which he conceived and founded in 2009 and which took place year after year with growing success. The founder himself announced it on the final day of Bif&st 2024: «I have been called to direct another prestigious international event created by me and I have also accepted the affectionate and friendly invitation of Andrea Camilleri’s daughters – whom I thank for the honor – to be part of the scientific committee already working to organize the celebrations of the centenary of the great writer which will take place in Italy and around the world in 2025 and will continue in 2026. A job that will keep me busy for years.

«I am leaving the scene with the Bif&st in excellent health from a cultural and economic point of view. First of all, I would like to thank the enormous audience that has followed and loved it up to now, and even more so this year, and of course my few expert collaborators who, amidst a thousand difficulties, have heroically built with me, from Rome and Bari, this event that has become a symbol of the Apulian cultural spring started by the then president of the Puglia Region Nichi Vendola and his councilor for culture Silvia Godelli, continued by the president Michele Emiliano and the mayor of Bari Antonio Decaro and produced by the Apulia Film Commission, of which I thank the current president Anna Maria Tosto.

«This festival has been built year after year by a small team of formidable and creative cultural organizers without whom Bif&st would never have even been born. Exactly as happens with a film: a director could never make it without screenwriters, directors of photography and production, actors and technicians. The Bif&st team, thanks to its unrepeatable experience, can easily continue to organize it even with another director, but not vice versa. I am ready to hand over to my successor who must necessarily be chosen from among those who already have solid experience as a cultural operator in large prestigious international events such as the Bif&st has become in over 15 years of activity without missing a single edition, and indeed growing stronger year after year. I would like to give only two pieces of advice to my successor, but also others if he requests them. The first: celebrate Andrea Camilleri’s centenary in Bari in March 2025 with a major retrospective. The second: before accepting the assignment, obtain written guarantees from public institutions on the timing – and certainties on the available budget – at least 11 months before the Bif&st begins, something that has never been possible for me, for us, to obtain in the last 5 years.

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