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VENICE 2021 Giornate degli Autori

Giornate degli Autori comes of age and takes flight

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- A new location and films to get audiences talking are on the cards for the 18th edition of the Venice Film Festival’s independent, parallel section, unspooling 1-11 September on the Lido

Giornate degli Autori comes of age and takes flight
Madeleine Collins by Antoine Barraud

Ten films in competition, five Special Screenings and one closing film out of competition; six first works and twenty-two represented nationalities; eighteen invited women directors, and just as many appointments with Italian cinema during Venetian Nights: these are the many numbers involved in the 18th edition of Giornate degli Autori, the independent, parallel section of the Venice International Film Festival which will unspool 1 – 11 September. Having flown its historic “nest” at Villa degli Autori, the event will spread its wings – as illustrated by the film poster chosen for this special anniversary – and divide its activities between the new Casa degli Autori, the equally new Sala Laguna (dedicated to Valentina Pedicini) and the traditional Sala Perla at the Casinò di Venezia.

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“It’s a year in which we’re asking the meaning of everything”, explains Artistic Director Gaia Furrer. “The women and men directors of the films in competition plunge us into stories whose protagonists continue to ask themselves, more or less explicitly: Who am I? Am I who I think I am? Am I happy with the life I’ve chosen?”. Madeleine Collins [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Antoine Barraud
film profile
]
, for example, the third feature by French filmmaker Antoine Barraud, is a Hitchcockian thriller revolving around a woman with a dual identity played by Virginie Efira. In Out of Sync [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Juanjo Giménez
film profile
]
by Catalan director Juanjo Giménez, meanwhile (who scooped Cannes’ Palme D’Or via the short film Timecode), a sound-designer struck down by a mysterious neuro-acoustic illness is forced to reconsider her entire life. The Romanian film Imaculat [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Monica Stan, George Chiper-…
film profile
]
 by Monica Stan and George Chiper Lillemark homes in on a girl who is sent to a rehabilitation centre for drug addicts, which becomes a platform for observing the power relations taking root within a group, while the Polish movie Anatomia [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ola Jankowska
film profile
]
, marking Aleksandra Jankowska’s filmmaking debut, sees a young woman embarking upon a journey through the memories of her own life as she tends to her dying father.

The only Italian title in competition, Californie [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Alessandro Cassigoli, Casey…
film profile
]
by Alessandro Cassigoli and Casey Kauffman straddles the documentary and fiction forms to follow the trajectory of a teenager originally from Morocco who has settled close to Naples and is looking for her place in the world. Likewise battling it out in competition is Aly Muritiba’s queer melodrama Deserto particular [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Aly Muritiba
film profile
]
; Ameer Fakher Eldin’s first work The Stranger [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ameer Fakher Eldin
film profile
]
, which was shot on the Golan Heights, a Syrian territory which has been occupied by Israel since 1967; Iván Fund’s Dusk Stone [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Iván Fund
film profile
]
, exploring the story of an unspeakable loss and positing friendship between women as a basis from which to start over; You Resemble Me [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Dina Amer
film profile
]
, which marks the directorial debut (executively produced by Spike Lee and Spike Jonze) of the esteemed Egyptian journalist Dina Amer and which revolves around a young French woman of Maghrebi origins whose character is based upon the real-life person of Hasna Aitboulahchenm who died during a police raid in Saint-Denis, and, last but not least, Shen Kong, the first film by Chen Guan which unfolds at the height of lockdown in the deserted streets of a Chinese city.

The themes of the search for meaning, of film as a channel for private and collective memory and of the relationship between past and present are at the heart of three documentaries screening out of competition: Three minutes. A Lengthening [+see also:
trailer
interview: Bianca Stigter
film profile
]
by Dutch historian and cultural critic Bianca Stigter. narrated by Helena Bonham Carter and produced by Steve McQueen; The Forgotten Ones [+see also:
trailer
interview: Michale Boganim
film profile
]
by the French-Israeli director Michale Boganim, and Il palazzo [+see also:
trailer
interview: Federica Di Giacomo
film profile
]
by Federica di Giacomo (the winner of the Orizzonti’s Best Film award for Deliver Us [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
in 2016).

Special Screenings out of competition include Elisa Fuksas Senza fine [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, a film painting an intimate portrait of the iconic Italian singer Ornella Vanoni; The Great Silence [+see also:
trailer
interview: Alessandro Gassmann
film profile
]
, which is the third work directed by Alessandro Gassmann and which is based upon Maurizio De Giovanni’s stage play of the same name, and the Official Selection’s closing film Lovely Boy [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Francesco Lettieri
film profile
]
by Francesco Lettieri, a cult director within the Italian indie music scene who follows the rollercoaster of successes and failures experienced by a Roman trap artist played by Andrea Carpenzano.

The photography of independent Italian cinema is set to be showcased in Venetian Nights, which is organised in collaboration with Isola Edipo under the artistic co-direction of Gaia Furrer and Silvia Jop. The opening film will be Welcome Venice [+see also:
trailer
interview: Andrea Segre
film profile
]
by Andrea Segre, an ensemble tale about how the identity of Venice and its people are changing, while the collective film Isolation [+see also:
trailer
interview: Julia von Heinz, Olivier Gu…
film profile
]
steals focus on the agenda and combines the directorial prowess of five leading European filmmakers - Michele Placido, Julia Von Heinz, Jaco van Dormael, Olivier Guerpillon and Michael Winterbottom – to speak of the tragedies and revolutions brought about by the pandemic in their own individual countries. The many other titles offered up in this category include Spin Time, che fatica la democrazia! [+see also:
trailer
interview: Sabina Guzzanti
film profile
]
by Sabina Guzzanti; Parole [+see also:
interview: Umberto Contarello
film profile
]
, which is the directorial debut of the screenwriter behind The Great Beauty [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Paolo Sorrentino
film profile
]
Umberto Contarello; Hugo in Argentina [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Stefano Knuchel, which homes in on illustrator Hugo Pratt, and the highly intense Caveman [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Tommaso Landucci
film profile
]
by Tommaso Landucci.

The women directors of the two short films falling under the banner of Miu Miu Women’s Tales this year are Isabel Sandoval and Kaouther Ben Hania, and, as previously announced, the jury set to decide upon the winner of the GdA Director’s Award (whose members can be found here) will be presided over by two women directors for the very first time: Bulgarians Mina Mileva and Vesela Kazakova (read our news).

The full Giornate degli Autori 2021 selection is as follows:

Competition

Shen Kong - Chen Guan (Macau) (opening film)
The Stranger [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ameer Fakher Eldin
film profile
]
 - Ameer Fakher Eldin (Syria/Germany/Palestine)
Anatomia [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ola Jankowska
film profile
]
 - Aleksandra Jankowska (Poland/France)
Californie [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Alessandro Cassigoli, Casey…
film profile
]
- Alessandro Cassigoli, Casey Kauffman (Italy)
Deserto particular [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Aly Muritiba
film profile
]
- Aly Muritiba (Brazil/Portugal)
Imaculat [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Monica Stan, George Chiper-…
film profile
]
 - Monica Stan, George Chiper Lillemark (Romania)
Madeleine Collins [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Antoine Barraud
film profile
]
- Antoine Barraud (France/Belgium/Switzerland)
Dusk Stone [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Iván Fund
film profile
]
- Iván Fund (Argentina/Chile/Spain)
Out of Sync [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Juanjo Giménez
film profile
]
- Juanjo Giménez (Spain/Lithuania)
You resemble me [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Dina Amer
film profile
]
- Dina Amer (Egypt/France/USA)

Out of Competition

Lovely Boy [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Francesco Lettieri
film profile
]
- Francesco Lettieri (Italy) (closing film)

Special Screenings

Il palazzo [+see also:
trailer
interview: Federica Di Giacomo
film profile
]
- Federica di Giacomo (Italy/Czech Republic)
The Great Silence [+see also:
trailer
interview: Alessandro Gassmann
film profile
]
- Alessandro Gassmann (Italy/Poland)
Senza fine [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
- Elisa Fuksas (Italy)
The Forgotten Ones [+see also:
trailer
interview: Michale Boganim
film profile
]
- Michale Boganim (France)
Three minutes. A Lengthening [+see also:
trailer
interview: Bianca Stigter
film profile
]
- Bianca Stigter (the Netherlands)

Miu Miu Women’s Tales

Shangri-la - Isabel Sandoval (Italy/USA) (short film)
I and the Stupid Boy - Kaouther Ben Hania (Italy/France) (short film)

Venetian Nights

Welcome Venice [+see also:
trailer
interview: Andrea Segre
film profile
]
- Andrea Segre (Italy) (opening film)
Caveman [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Tommaso Landucci
film profile
]
 - Tommaso Landucci (Italy/Switzerland)
Coriandoli - Maddalena Stornaiuolo (Italy) (short film)
Cùntami - Giovanna Taviani (Italy)
Diteggiatura - Riccardo Giacconi (Italy) (short film)
Fellini and the Shadow [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
- Catherine McGilvray (Italy/Switzerland)
Giulia [+see also:
trailer
interview: Ciro De Caro
film profile
]
- Ciro De Caro (Italy)
Hugo in Argentina [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
- Stefano Knuchel (Switzerland)
I nostri fantasmi [+see also:
trailer
interview: Alessandro Capitani
film profile
]
- Alessandro Capitani (Italy)
The World in Shots - Cecilia Mangini, Paolo Pisanelli (Italy) (pre-opening event in collaboration with Bookciak, Azione!)
Isolation [+see also:
trailer
interview: Julia von Heinz, Olivier Gu…
film profile
]
- Michele Placido, Julia von Heinz, Olivier Guerpillon, Jaco van Dormael, Michael Winterbottom (Italy/UK/Germany/Belgium/Sweden) (Special Screening – Inclusion Day 2021)
Sons of Cain [+see also:
trailer
interview: Keti Stamo
film profile
]
- Keti Stamo (France/Albania/Italy)
Parole [+see also:
interview: Umberto Contarello
film profile
]
- Umberto Contarello (Italy)
Princesa - Stefania Muresu (Italy)
Spin Time, che fatica la democrazia! [+see also:
trailer
interview: Sabina Guzzanti
film profile
]
- Sabina Guzzanti (Italy)
Tonino De Bernardi – Un tempo, un incontro - Daniele Segre (Italy)
Trastwest - Ivano De Matteo (Italy) (short film)
With or Without You [+see also:
trailer
interview: Stefano Sardo
film profile
]
- Stefano Sardo (Italy/France)

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(Translated from Italian)

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