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LECCE 2020

Olivier Assayas will be the “Protagonist of European Film” in Lecce

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- The 12 films competing in the 21st edition of the European Film Festival, unspooling online from 31 October-7 November, have also been announced

Olivier Assayas will be the “Protagonist of European Film” in Lecce
Director Olivier Assayas (© Carole Bethuel)

UPDATE (28 October 2020): The 21st edition of the European Film Festival, set to unspool in Lecce from 31 October-7 November, will take place exclusively online, in order to comply with the Prime Ministerial Decree of 24 October 2020. In an effort to halt the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the decree orders the suspension of “spectacles open to the public in theatres, concert halls, movie theatres and other spaces, including open-air venues”, across the entirety of Italy.

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The festival will offer live-streams of discussions with the main guests at this edition and on-demand screenings of all the films that would have been shown in theatres. The on-demand platform for the film screenings will be active during the dates of the festival, accessible here. The live-streamed discussions will be available on the festival’s website and on social-media channels – just follow the #fce2020 and #festivaldelcinemaeuropeo hashtags.

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Olivier Assayas will be the “Protagonist of European Film” at the 21st edition of the European Film Festival, which will unfurl this year between 31 October – 7 November in Lecce following its earlier postponement as a result of the Covid-19 crisis. In addition to an “in conversation” session with the director, the tribute will include screenings of several titles typical of his filmography.

“Although we couldn’t hold the festival during the usual springtime period, I’m delighted to be bringing the audience and guests of this 21st edition back into auditoriums this autumn, in full compliance with anti-Covid regulations”, enthused festival director Alberto La Monica. “I am very happy that our invitation was accepted by Olivier Assayas who is one of the most sensitive French filmmakers in existence, with an ability to tell stories that always demonstrate a profound understanding of social issues”.

The 12 European titles set to be screened in world and national premieres have also been selected, and will compete for the Golden Olive-Cristina Soldano Award for Best European Film, assigned by an international jury presided over by Katriel Schory and further composed of Beatrice Fiorentino, Mathilde Henrot, Antonio Saura and Mira Staleva. The films in competition are: Half Sister [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Damjan Kozole
film profile
]
by Damjan Kozole (Slovenia); Sister [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Svetla Tsotsorkova
film profile
]
by Svetla Tsotsorkova (Bulgaria/Qatar); Scandinavian Silence [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Martti Helde
film profile
]
by Martti Helde (Estonia/France/Belgium); Winona [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by The Boy (the artist name of Alexandros Voulgaris) (Greece); La Belle indifference by Kivanc Sezer (Turkey); Lara [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: GoCritic! Interview: Jan-Ol…
interview: Jan Ole Gerster
film profile
]
by Jan-Ole Gerster (Germany); Tench [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Patrice Toye (Belgium); Open Door [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Florenc Papas
film profile
]
by Florenc Papas (Albania); County Lines [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Henry Blake (UK/Belgium); Twelve Thousand [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Nadège Trebal (France); Disco [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jorunn Myklebust Syversen
film profile
]
by Jorunn Myklebust Syversen (Norway) and The Son [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ines Tanović
film profile
]
by Ines Tanovic (Bosnia Herzegovina).

Alongside the Official Competition, the sections reserved for short films and documentaries and the meetings dedicated to Italian and European comedy, the 21st edition of the festival will also present a tribute to the popular actor-director Aldo Fabrizi, including a retrospective of the works he has directed, as well as hosting the 11th edition of the Mario Verdone Award, whose three finalists are Phaim Bhuiyan for Bangla [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, Marco D’Amore for The Immortal [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
and Roberto De Feo for The Nest [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Roberto De Feo
film profile
]
.

“The European Film Festival brings this difficult yet rewarding year to a close for the Apulia CineFestival Network”, declared Simonetta Dellomonaco, president of the Apulia Film Commission. “When, back in June, we announced the revival of the individual festivals and their revised dates, we decided to send a strong signal not just to the public and to cinephiles, but to the entire cultural industry, both regional and national. In no time at all, the new formats we’d developed for these events became veritable models for making film and culture safely”.

The director of the AFC Antonio Parente added: “With the help of the Apulia Region’s task force and ministerial guidelines, we set up specific protocols which would allow crews to continue filming safely. Thanks to this work, Apulia has quite literally been invaded by film sets over recent weeks: between June and November, over 25 productions opted to film in Apulia, including three TV series, two of which will be shooting here for 10 weeks, while the third will film for 20”.

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(Translated from Italian)

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