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Rotterdam Film Festival Unveils 2023 Competition

The International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) unveiled its full lineup for its 2023 event on Monday.

After two fully virtual festivals, the IFFR finally returns as an in-person festival, from January 25 to February 5 in the Dutch port city. Rotterdam is one of the last major festivals to return after the pandemic, as its 2022 event was forced to go online-only at the last minute when Dutch authorities imposed a new lockdown in December last year, just weeks away. before the IFFR started.

The resulting revenue shortfall (closed theaters equals zero ticket sales) meant IFFR had to cut its budget, cutting 15 percent of its staff and restructuring.

Festival director Vanja Kaludjercic, who runs the IFFR together with managing director Marjan van der Haar, said the hollywood reporter the cuts were made “so we don’t have to make big changes to the festival.” However, the 2023 edition will be significantly smaller than the pre-pandemic versions, with around 20 percent fewer films.

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“But we still have 430 films on the schedule, including shorts, with more than 200 world premieres,” Kaludjercic notes, “so we’re still very big.”

IFFR Rotterdam 2023

Rotterdam International Film Festival


IFFR 2023 will open with the world premiere of Chewan experimental biopic of the tortured Norwegian painter Edvard Munch—he of the iconic “The Scream”—by self-taught filmmaker Henrik Martin Dahlsbakken (Returning home, Possession). Produced by The Film Company with backing from Scandinavian streamer Viaplay and regional fund Filminvest, the feature film tells Munch’s story in four intertwining chapters, each written by a different writer—Fredrik Høyer, Mattis Herman Nyquist, Gine Cornelia Pedersen and Eivind Sæther—and each with a different actor playing Munch at age 21 (Alfred Ekker Strande), 30 (Mattis Herman Nyquist), 45 (Ola G. Furuseth) and 80 (Anne Krigsvoll).

All India Rankinga coming-of-age tale from director Varun Grover, will close IFFR 2023 on February 5.

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The IFFR Tiger Competition main lineup will include Third, a mystery drama from Lebanon from award-winning documentary filmmaker Karim Kassem, who uses the metaphor of an auto mechanic to explore the damage his country and its people desperately need to repair; the swedish autobiographical documentary drama 100 stations, in which dancer Giovanni Bucchieri explores 25 years of love, success and failure; Y playlanda deliberately camp and kitsch drama from American director Georden West, who imagines a time-changing night at Boston’s oldest and most notorious gay bar.

In the Big Screen section, aimed at highlighting works for a wider audience or by more established directors, IFFR 2023 will feature a victory from Korean director Shin Yeon-Shick, an inspiring sports drama featuring Parasite stars Song Kang-ho as the failed coach of a women’s volleyball team; the danish psychological drama Copenhagen does not exist by director Martin Skovbjerg from a script by the worst person in the world writer/director Eskil Vogt; Y Lukethe latest from Belgian-American director Jessica Woodworth, a contemporary adaptation of Dino Buzzati’s classic novel the tartar steppe.

Copenhagen does not exist

‘Copenhagen does not exist’

IFFR 2023

For Kaludjercic, who took office in 2020, this upcoming IFFR will be the first real test of his management. His renewed focus on “discovery,” on directors and films outside of the thematic, regional, or genre mainstream, will be on full display.

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“We have films from the Middle East and Africa, from Morocco, from Lebanon, from Iran, from Tunisia,” he notes, “Asian cinema has always been a focus at IFFR but we are looking to expand and diversify our focus.”

African films in Tiger Competition 2023 lineup include Tunisian drama Geology of the Separation the directors Yosr Gasmi and Mauro Mazzocchi; the Moroccan characteristic co-ownership by Leila Kilani; Y The specter of Boko Haram by Cameroonian director Cyrielle Rainingou, all of which will have their world premiere at the IFFR. From Asia, Kaludjercic’s team has selected players like gagaland by Chinese director Teng Yuhan and the Sri Lankan feature film munnell by director Visakesa Chandrasekaram.

In its Bright Future programme, dedicated to young and emerging talent, IFFR previously announced two world premieres: Almost entirely a mild disastera deadpan comedy-drama from Turkish director Umut Subasi, and whispering mountainsa satirical drama from director Jagath Manuwarna looking at what happens when a supernatural virus spreads across Sri Lanka.

Showcasing last year’s art house highlights, Rotterdam’s Limelight section will include festival favorites like Alice Diop’s Saint Omercharlotte wells After the sun, EO from the Pole Jerzy Skolimowski, the autobiographical Iranian drama by Jafar Panahi no bearsY war pony from directors Riley Keough and Gina Gammell.

The 2023 Robby Müller Award, presented in honor of the late Dutch cinematographer, from Paris, Texas, 24 hour party people Y breaking wavesamong others, it will be awarded to the French lenser Hélène Louvart, whose work includes feature films such as Never Rarely Sometimes Always, the lost daughter, Happy as Lazarus Y The wonders.

never rarely sometimes always copy copy

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‘Never Rarely Sometimes Always’ Cinematographer Hélène Louvart to Receive IFFR 2023 Robby Müller Award

‘Never Rarely Sometimes Always’ / Courtesy of Sundance

Oscar-winning director and Turner Prize-winning visual artist Steve McQueen will also attend IFFR 2023 to present sun statean artwork originally commissioned for the festival’s 50th anniversary in 2021 that can now be properly displayed at the Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen exhibition space in Rotterdam, with the official opening on January 26.

The work, McQueen’s first major artwork since his “Year 3” commission for Tate Britain in 2019, is a two-channel video projection shown on either side of two screens, opening with images of a flaming sun and includes footage from 1927. feature film the jazz singera movie famous for being the first “talkie” in movie history that is also infamous for Al Jolson’s performance in blackface.

IFFR 2023 will also see the in-person return of the famous Rotterdam co-production market, which will celebrate its 40th edition from January 29 to February 29. 1 with one-on-one meetings and networking sessions between independent producers, financiers and distributors.

Full list of IFFR 2023 movies below.

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opening movie

Chew, your. Henrik Martin Dahlsbakken

tiger contest

100 stationsdirector giovanni bucchieri

gagalanddirector Teng Yuan

Geology of the Separationdirectories Yosr Gasmi, Mauro Mazzocchi

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co-ownershipdirector Leila Kilani

Last nightdirector lukas nathrath

structures, Mister. Gustav Geir Bolason

munnelldirector Visakesa Chandrasekaram

new strainsdirector Artemis Shaw, Prashanth Kamalakanthan

notes on a summerdir. Diego Llorente

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Numbdirector Amir Toodehrosta

number eighteen, your. Guido van der Werve

the palisiadedirector Felipe Sotnychenko

playland, your. georden west

The specter of Boko Haramdirector Cyrielle Raingou

Third, your. Karim Kasem

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three sparksdirector Mujer Noemi

big screen contest

before the collapsedirectories Alice Zeniter, Benoit Volnais

Before the vultures arrivedir. Jonas N. Diaz

Copenhagen does not exist, Mister. Martin Skovbjerg

lot raffledirectories Zaza Khalvashi, Tamta Khalvashi

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endless bordersdirector Abbas Amini

midas ants, for you. Edgar Honetschlager

four little adultsdirector Selma Vilhúnen

the little femaledir. Laura Amelia Guzman Conde

joramdirector mahija devashish

Lukedirector jessica woodworth

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my little night secretdirector Natalia Meshchaninova

I’m Nothing – The Nothing Clubdirector edgar pera

Okiku and the worlddirector

a victorydirector Shin Yeon-Shick

The Southeast, tell. Daniel Casabé Edgardo Dieleke

Travel to Italydirector sophie letourneur

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closing film

All India Rankingdirector Varun Grover

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