(July 30, 2012) The 65th edition of the Festival del film Locarno will open on Wednesday 1 August. At the traditional Welcome Cocktail - attended by Federal Councilor Alain Berset and by Mayor of the City of Locarno and Vice-President of the Festival Carla Speziali, as well as by representatives from cultural institutions and Swiss and Ticino politicians - President Marco Solari and Artistic Director Olivier Père will open this edition, in the presence of the numerous directors, actors and film professionals who are guests of the Festival.
The opening ceremony will take place on the Piazza Grande at 21:30, beginning with a presentation of the official juries of the three competitions and a preview screening of extracts from films in the Concorso internazionale, followed by the presentation of the Excellence Award Moët & Chandon to British actress Charlotte Rampling, and then the world premiere screening of the British thriller The Sweeney introduced by director Nick Love and the actor Ray Winstone. The Festival has also organized, along with the director and choreographer Daniele Finzi Pasca, a surprise to celebrate the Switzerland’s National 1 August holiday.
The Festival del film Locarno will take place 1-11 August and the program includes around three hundred films (fiction, documentary and shorts) from over fifty different countries. In addition to the three official competitions, fifteen tributes to major film figures will enable the audience to discover their work and get a better sense of the artists via screenings and conversations that are open to all. The complete Otto Preminger retrospective will be enhanced by discussions with guests and film critics, a round table and a book published by Capricci about the Hollywood director’s work.
Over eleven evenings the Piazza Grande will welcome major figures from the film world and show fifteen films for the wider audience – most of them world or international premières – introduced by their directors and casts.
Guests attending the 65th edition include: actors Alain Delon, Charlotte Rampling, Harry Belafonte, Gael García Bernal, Dree Hemingway, Alexandra Maria Lara, Elio Germano, Valerio Mastandrea, Paul Dano, Zoe Kazan, Lizzy Caplan, Eric Cantona, Rachida Brakni, Ornella Muti, Ingrid Caven, Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, Ray Winstone and Renato Pozzetto, filmmakers Leos Carax, JIA Zhang-ke, Souleymane Cissé, Bertrand Bonello, Krzysztof Zanussi, Claire Denis, Ulrich Seidl, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Roger Avary, the American producer Arnon Milchan and Johnnie To, producer/director from Hong Kong, Italian singer-songwriter Gianni Morandi and Australian pop icon Kylie Minogue.
A foretaste of the Festival has been made possible through the now well-established Prefestival: free films on the Piazza Grande.
Following last night’s successful free screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1954 masterpiece Rear Window, in celebration of the Universal Pictures’ centenary, and shown last night thanks to support from Valora, attracting an audience of almost 4000 people to the Piazza Grande, Tuesday 31 July will see the Prefestival’s second free film evening, supported by UBS. For the occasion, the actress Elsa Martinelli will introduce Raffaello Matarazzo’s film La Risaia (1956), in which she stars. The same evening there will also be a screening of the long unseen Dino Risi short film 1848 (1949), and the most recent film by Swiss filmmaker Korinna Sehringer, Shouting Secrets (2011).
Piazza Grande, 2012 official photo. ©Festival del film Locarno
The 65th edition of the Festival del film Locarno will conclude with the official awards ceremony on the Piazza Grande, Saturday August 11, starting at 21:00.
The full programme is available on the official site http://www.pardo.ch