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Bari International Film Festival – BIFEST (5-12 April 2014) http://www.bifest.it/en

Many festivals in the same event

Anna Magnani Award

When two grandiose film professionals team up to create a new film festival, the result can only be BIFEST, a lively festival with an intense ambiance and packed audiences in equally grandiose cinemas ranging from ABC, Palazzo dele Poste, Multicinema, Teatro Forma to the magnificent Teatro Petruzzelli, one of the most beautiful theatres in the world, which apart from screenings, opening and closing galas, also hosts many public events and film encounters, all set in beautiful Bari, home to some of the best wines in the world and a rich Puglia cuisine mix of the most ground-breaking auteur films and deliciously unique ricci, which becomes an inseparable ingredient of the exquisite Puglia film cuisine. These two film wizards are Ettore Scola, a monumental figure of the Italian and European cinema, a guest of honour at many other prestigious festivals – as mentioned in an earlier article, he was the special coup de Coeur guest at the 2014 Festival International du Film d'Amour-FIFA Mons, and author of some of the most memorable classics (just think of Il sorpasso, The Dinner, The Family, A Special Day, We all loved each other so much, Romanzo di un giovane povero, Che strano chiamarsi Federico, among many other titles) who acts as the festival president, and a long-standing professional journalist film critic, writer, producer, president of Cinecitta Holding, a man who directed la Mostra del Cinema di Venezia, il TaorminaFilmFest, il RomaFictionFest, il Premio Grolle d'Oro, il Carnevale di Venezia – Felice Laudadio, the BIFEST artistic director. Together they created a festival for true film lovers, which has become, with 70,000 viewers and more than 400 various programme segments in 8 days in 2013 (the number has been to reduced this year to 332), one of the leading film events in Italy after only 5 editions.


Mario Monicelli Award for best director in Paolo Virzi forhuman capital

Franco Cristaldi Award for the best producer to Gianluca Arcopinto for the administrator and for My Class

Tonino Guerra Award for the best subject to MORABITO for ANTONIOThe seller of medicine

Luciano Vincenzoni Award for Best Screenplay atFRANCESCO BRUNI, FRANCIS SMALL and Paolo Virzi forhuman capital

Anna Magnani Award for Best Actress in GOLINO for VALERIA Like the wind

Vittorio Gassman Award for Best Actor in Fabrizio Gifuni for human capital

Alida Valli Award for Best Supporting Actress in MATILDE GIOLI for human capital

Alberto Sordi Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for CARLO Buccirosso Song 'and Napule

Ennio Morricone Award for Best Original Score in ALDO DE Pivio AND BAREFOOT for Song 'and Napule

Giuseppe Rotunno Award for Best Cinematography for a GHERARDO GOSSI Like the wind

Dante Ferretti Award for Best Art Direction for a GIANCARLO BASILI The intrepid

Roberto Perpignani Award for best editor to CECILIA ZANUSO for human capital

Piero Tosi prize for the best costume to RITA MARIA BARBERA for happy Years


Alida Valli Award

Film professionals and film enthusiasts can nowadays rarely see fully packed cinemas with long queues outside (expect at the big A festivals), facing several times a day, each day, the ambivalent feelings of discomfort and ecstatic joy at being rejected an entry to a film after a long waiting time for an extra ticket – the disappointment created by the refusal is somehow inexplicably subdued by the sheer sight of masses of film lovers willing to stand or sit on the floor throughout the film. BIFEST is enthusiastically welcomed not only by local film audiences, but also by the FIPRESCI, International Federation of Film Critics, which holds its annual General Assembly during BIFEST.

Dedicated to the revitalization of Italian cinema, which is struggling not only with a wider international distribution, but also with its local distribution, BIFEST gives the public a unique experience of watching first or second Italian films, along with Italian and other world film giants, International Panorama section, documentary and short film segment, coupled with a great and difficult choice of Cinema master classes, film talks, special events, tributes, film critic lessons, and retrospectives which have included such masters as Federico Fellini, Alberto Sordi, Carmelo Bene and Gian Maria Volonte. So far, the festival can boast of the participation of Stephen Frears, Margarethe von Trotta, Bertrand Tavernier, Barbara Sukowa, Abbas Kiarostami, Marco Bellochio, Giuseppe Tornatore, Adriano Celentano, Claudia Mori, Giancarlo Gianini – these are just some of names on a long list. The sixth edition screened Italian films ranging from Come il Vento, by Marco Simon Puccioni, Il Capitale umano, by Paolo Virzi, L'Intrepido, by Gianni Ameli, Anni felici, by Daniele Luchetti, to first/second features such as provocative Tarantinoesque black comedy Smetto quando voglio by Sidney Sibilia, or a social immigrant drama Prima Neve by Andrea Segre, who was multi-awarded for his previous Io sono Li, to Salvo, by Fabio Grassadonia & Antonio Piazza, who received great critical acclaim in Cannes 2013.


This year's immense tribute to one of the greatest cinema actors, Gian Maria Volonte, includes 75 events in his honour. Another tribute is to internationally acclaimed Paolo Sorrentino, while Focus centres on Valeria Golino, Giuseppe Battiston, Barbora Bobulova, Isabella Ferrari, Edoardo Leo, Alessandro Roja, Elio Germano, Ettore Scola & Mauro Berardi a propos Massimo Troisi.

BIFEST is more than a festival, as "festival is somehow a strongly reductive word in our case", claim the founders, adding: "What we really intended to build is a powerful cultural machine, or better still a formidable 'culture celebration', that resembles a matryoshka doll: one festival after another, in the same event. A 'unicum' with a highly innovative and unprecedented formula, ranging from cinema to theatre, music, literature, poetry, television, the treasures of the film archives, psychoanalysis, drawing, history, professional training workshops, confrontations and at times clashes, but always aiming at the discovery of new and unspoilt expressive and artistic languages".

Maja Bogojević



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