The city's premier movie showcase returns with some big surprises, September 23 - October 4!
The festival will feature more than 180 films from all over the world (including Greece), three competition sections, including "Music and Film", one of the few music documentary competitive programs in the world. The festival also includes special tributes, documentaries and some of the best homegrown Greek shorts around.
The festival program is complemented by a series of sidebar events, workshops and lectures, not forgetting parties and an armful of surprises, especially conceived for this year's edition.
The festival poster was deisnged by internationally acclaimed street artist WD.
The festival's official Competition Section is bigger and better, featuring some of the best films from all over the world, aiming to introduce local audiences to the next generation of must-know directors.
One of the few festivals in the world to feature a "Music & Film" competition section, the 21st Athens International Film Festival is set to screen some of the most deafening new docs around, that will no-doubt attract even the most hard-to-please film buffs.
Surpassing 200 submissions, the Greek Shorts Competition Section is one of the most significant parts of the festival, since it promotes homegrown productions and offers local filmmakers the opportunity to win big prizes.
New Sidebar Event: Athens Film Lab
This year, the 21st Athens International Film Festival – Opening Nights launches the Athens Film Lab, a film development program that helps filmmakers refine their concepts, work on their screenplays and seek co-productions, offering local filmmakers and producers the opportunity to get in touch with international acclaimed professionals.
In this context, the Athens-Europe, A Game for Two program will train and fund 7 filmmaker/producer pairs to write, produce and shoot 7 shorts, backing each project with 7.000 Euros.
New Collaborations & Sidebar Events
The festival renews its partnership with the Athens Technopolis, with INNOVATHENS serving as the venue of choice for the Athens Lab workshop sessions, while a well-known local filmmaker is planning a very special surprise.
This year's edition sees the consolidation of two more seminal collaborations. The Mediterranean Film Institute will help organize a special feature film program, complete with a pitching forum and workshops, while the festival's newly launched partnership with the Hellenic Film Academy is set to involve a special surprise. More information to be released soon.
Tributes, Special Screenings and Documentaries
Since its very first year, the Athens International Film Festival - Opening Nights has been paying homage to notable filmmakers through tributes and retrospectives.
Oldies but goldies in restored prints and anniversary screenings will complete the festival program. This year, the Special Screenings section will play host to one of the most staggering movies of all time.
Just like every year, the best non-fiction productions form an integral part of the event.
Greek Films and Breakthrough Awards
The Greek Films Section is one of the most significant parts of the festival, allowing local filmmakers to introduce their work to homegrown audiences shortly before their commercial release! The festival also pays tribute to new talent with the Best Newcomers Award, judged by a special jury eager to stand behind homegrown production.
More info about the festival will be released soon.
The Athens International Film Festival by the numbers:
- More than 2000 films in the past two decades
- More than 400.000 viewers have attended at least one screening
- Three competition sections: International, Greek Shorts and Music & Film, a hard-to-find category in festivals worldwide.
- Nine Awards (the Audience Award was established from the start)
- More than 100 notable film professionals have attended the festival over the years, including Daniel Day Lewis, Ari Folman, Jane Birkin, Fatih Akin, Adèle Exarchopoulos, Costa Gavras, Jeremy Irons, Peter Greenaway, Andrea Arnold, Julian Temple, Tom Tykwer, Shion Sono, Ki-duk Kim, Christine Vachon, Melvil Poupaud, Ben Gazzara, Dan Futterman and more.