The big, diverse one
Celebrating the diversity of film culture, the 2002 Melbourne International Film Festival has themed itself Crossing Borders. An astonishingly diverse festival, it is screening 350 films—international features, documentaries, animation, short film (in serious competition and with a welcome trio of retrospectives), music on film—and presenting Sideshow 02’s collection of works incorporating digital media. As part of Sideshow, American new media pranksters, Damaged Californians, will present Alternate Routes, an online project that recreates/re-imagines/perverts your holiday from the photos you (bravely) submit. Go to the festival website for a sample of the project and entry details. This year’s featured filmmaker is Korean Kim Ki-Duk whose entire output will be screened. An interesting companion for this tribute will be the New and Emerging Asian Women Filmmakers program. Also screening will be the best of Rotterdam Film Festival’s Tiger Awards for innovative debut features (the festival’s director will be in town). For fans of SciFi, the B-grade the bizarre, old and new, there’s Strange New Worlds, Journeys Into Alternate Fictions. A rare treat will be a focus on comedy: There Goes the Neighbourhood! Humour On Film. Just as Ingmar Bergman (who could make comedy as well as fuel the dark side of Woody Allen) is being reassessed after a critical quiet patch, comes Northern Lights—New Scandinavian Cinema: From Bergman to Dogme95. And there’s a youth program: Mach 2. Faced with so much diversity and such cinematic riches, the agonising challenge for film lovers is to make up their minds just what to see. Melbourne International Film Festival, 23 July - 11 August.
Pulling in the filmmakers
Short film festivals are proliferating, prizes are multiplying, ambitions are soaring and winners are setting out on the ever expanding international festival circuit in search of careers and markets..and more prizes. The mix of festivals encouraging short filmmaking is remarkable, ranging from the jokey to the niche to the eclectic, supported by local councils, screen culture organisations, arts festivals and minor and major film festivals. Sydney’s Metro Screen is a great nurturer of the art as part of its day to day activities. For its Kaleidoscope Short Film Festival this year it’s pulling in the punters with the promise of great rewards. Perhaps the burgeoning and increasingly competitive festival market requires a greater wooing of filmmakers. Or maybe it’s just that talent deserves reward. Metro Screen is calling for entries for its short film festival where the selected filmmakers compete for a 16mm filmmaking package and a share of $40,000 worth of funding in 11 award categories. Fifty independent films will be shown over 5 nights, September 30-October 4th, competing for the judges and audience awards. The entry deadline is August 16. Enquiries: 02 9361 5318
RealTime issue #49 June-July 2002 pg. 22
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