Festival years (14)
As the major film event in Greece and the greater Southeastern European region, the Thessaloniki International Film Festival hosts an eclectic selection of approximately 280 films from international independent filmmakers.
Our program consists of an international competition for first and second features, sidebar sections focusing on the best of world cinema such as Independence Days, Balkan Survey and Focus and a panorama of the yearly Greek production.
Parallel events, such as art exhibitions and concerts, and industry initiatives have turned the Thessaloniki International Film Festival into a major event on the European film festival circuit.
For feature films only
The ever-growing TIFF programme offers through various sections a comprehensive, global look into the best and most innovative in international film production, as well as showcasing the work of renowned directors. The main sections of the TIFF are:
The International Programme consists of several sections that focus on freshness of vision, innovative narrative and new explorations of film language. The International Competition Section is reserved for first and second features by newly emerging young directors. Fourteen first or second feature films from all over the world vie for the Golden (40.000 Euros) and the Silver Alexander (25.000 Euros) awards. Important new films that do not qualify for competition are screened in the Special Screenings and Out of Competition sections. The programme is fleshed out and enriched by Retrospectives and Tributes to leading figures in the world of film in their presence, as well as Exhibitions, Masterclasses, Round Table Discussions, Publications and Concerts.
Dedicated to the best possible presentation of the country’s film production, the TIFF organizes a panorama of Greek Films in a non-competitive section, offering an exceptional and comprehensive overview of the local films. In conjunction with Agora, the TIFF market, the festival promotes Greek Films both locally and internationally, providing film professionals with all the necessary tools to network and negotiate. Apart from the yearly line-up of Greek Films, the Festival presents exclusively to professionals a curated series of “works in progress”, as well as tributes and retrospectives of local masters that introduce the TIFF audiences with their works. In addition, the DigitalWave competitive section functions as a platform for young filmmakers working with digital media, thus presenting an alternative view of the local audiovisual production. Last, Greece: Generation Next, organized with Crossroads Co-production Forum, introduces to the audience and industry professionals Greek filmmakers in the process of making their first feature
Independence Days the official parallel section of TIFF is dedicated to cutting edge independent films from all over the world and consists of approximately 40-50 films (mainly fiction but not excluding documentaries) introduced in several sub-sections. ID 09, the “identity” of the section, provides the main selection of the year. All films in this section are eligible for the Human Values Award (15.000 Euros) presented by the TV Channel of the Greek Parliament. Young Americans is dedicated to new voices from the US. Someone to Watch showcases the work of young and emerging directors. Finally Tributes focuses to established auteurs, who still manage to surprise us with their unique vision, or introduces the work of yet to be discovered masters. Event-like films or projects are presented as special screenings.
Established in 1994, the “Balkan Survey” section aims to present a review of the annual film production and the latest cinematic developments to the Festival’s Greek and foreign audience. Through a selection of the most important films coming from the Balkan region, it creates a bridge of communication with the wider area of Northeastern Europe and connects Balkan cinema to Europe. The “Balkan Survey” consists of approximately 20 films, including a special tribute to a renowned director. All new films presented are eligible for the Balkan Survey Audience Award (2.000 Euros) while they can also compete for the Equal Opportunities Award (6.000 Euros).
FOCUS is the latest addition to the TIFF’s international programme. Through a small yet eclectic selection of 10 films, FOCUS picks a different subject matter every year, thus investigating the manner in which cinema acts as a mirror for contemporary society. Topics such as “Teenage Lust / Teenage Angst”, “Contemporary Wars”, “Commune 2008” have so far provided the context for an adventurous cinematic exploration, leading up to this year’s theme: “POST-romance”.
Part of the TIFF’s constant evolution was the introduction of a new section last November, the Experimental Forum, granting even more emphasis on the avant-garde and experimental film. The Experimental Forum will venture to open a new window to the Avant-Garde, free from all conventions on the one hand but examined and presented through the prism of cinema on the other. With the belief that cinema is still the most inclusive and accessible medium, communicating all the arts, the TIFF puts these experiments under a “cinematic” microscope and invites you to have a look.
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