Following the announcement of its side sections, guests and spotlight picks two weeks ago, the complete line-up for the 53rd edition of the Thessaloniki International Film Festival was revealed today, at a press conference marked by festival head Dimitri Eipides's absence due to illness.
More than 150 films will be screened, and "the common thread that binds this year's selections is mankind", Eipides announced in a welcome note, read out by festival co-ordinator Eleni Rammou. "The greatness of Man is sung by great auteurs," Eipides's note continued, "and such great auteurs will be welcomed to the festival's various sections".
The International Competition, which seeks out cinematic gems from first- and second-time directors around the globe, has picked out Tobias Lindholm's A Hijacking (Denmark), Slawomir Fabicki's Loving (Poland) and Paul Negoescu's A Month in Thailand (Romania) among 12 other films, to compete for the Golden and Silver Alexander awards.
This year's awards will be handed out by a jury comprising Greek cinematographer Thymios Bakatakis, Portuguese director João Pedro Rodrigues, Danish director Ole Christian Madsen and Icelandic Film Center Founding Director Laufrey Gudjonsdottir, presided over by German film academic Thomas Elsaesser.
Local interest will be revitalized by 14 new Greek titles premiering throughout the festival's various sections, with Ektoras Lygizos's debut Boy Eating the Bird's Food (Special Mention at Karlovy Vary) and Ilias Yiannakakis's Joy (International Premiere) partaking in the International Competition section.
Always mindful of providing its visiting professionals with as large a snapshot of the local productions as possible, the Agora will this year be hosting 20 more Greek titles at its Market Library, while their Works in Progress will host 12 titles from the European and Mediteranean region vying for the section's post-production funds award, while 17 films have been tapped for development aid by the Crossroads workshop.
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