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10 international film festivals across the globe

10 international film festivals across the globe

Musement takes a look at ten top festivals across the globe dedicated to the art of cinema.

From Venice to New York to Melbourne to Hong Kong, here’s the scoop on ten international film festivals taking place in 2019.

1. Venice International Film Festival

It should come as no surprise that this post begins with the famous Venice Film Festival, held each year in the illustrious Palazzo del Cinema di Venezia in Venice Lido as part of the broader context of the Venice Biennale’s cultural contemporary art festival. Founded in 1932, the Venice International Film Festival is the world’s oldest and this year marks the 76th edition! The atmosphere is characterized by the lagoon’s singular charm and glamour and offers an opportunity to discover or rediscover la Serenissima, (the city’s sobriquet, which means the “most serene”).  28 August – 7 September

2. The Cannes Film Festival – France

It would be criminal to compile a list of the world’s top film festivals without mentioning the Palme d’Or and the famous Cannes Film Festival. 2019 will bring the 71st edition of the Cannes Film Festival, the world’s most publicized.  Called the International Film Festival until 2002, this is the place to see and be seen for the ‘who’s who’ of world cinema. Spectators can watch the stars arrive on the red carpet and play traveler while admiring the luxurious yachts along the Croisette or watch outdoor retrospectives on Macé beach, where the festival’s cult films are screened. But Cannes is not just for the festival! On the contrary, if you visit Cannes and the splendors of the French Riviera outside of the festival, you could even walk on the famous red carpet!  14  – 25 May 


The 70th edition of the Cannes Film Festival. Photo credit: plb06 via VisualHunt.com / CC BY-NC-ND

3. TriBeCa Film Festival – New York

The Tribeca Film Festival is an American independent film festival held every year in New York. Founded by Robert De Niro, Craig Hatkoff and Jane Rosenthal, the festival’s aim was to revitalize the economy and the city’s cultural life after the September 11, 2001 attacks. The concept behind the festival is to reach the widest possible audience to convey the power of cinema to the largest number of people, as well as for New York to be recognized as a major cinema hub.  The 18th edition will pay tribute to two cult films with a musical theme: This is Spinal Tap, in honor of the 35th anniversary the mockumentary’s premiere, and Reality Bites, which premiered 25 years ago. 24  April – 5 May

4. Taormina Film Fest – Sicily

The Taormina Film Fest – which began under the name of Rassegna Cinematografica Internazionale di Messina e Taormina – takes place in this stunning city’s ancient Greek theater, perched on a natural terrace over the Ionian Sea and famous for its view of Mount Etna.  A true reference for Italy’s film culture, the film selection for the recent 64th edition included 13 world premieres, 6 international premieres and numerous Italian premieres. 30 June – 6 July


The ancient theatre in Taormina

5. Sundance Film Festival – Park City, Utah

Sundance, the top American independent film festival and one of the world’s largest, celebrates its 35th edition this year. Established by the Sundance Institute, a cultural nonprofit organization founded by Robert Redford, the festival showcases the most innovative American and international filmmakers. It presents films made outside the mainstream Hollywood circuit and reveals the talent of many famous and acclaimed directors such as Quentin Tarantino. 24 January – 3 February

6. SXSW Film Festival – Austin, Texas

South by Southwest Film is part of a series of festivals (music, film and interactive media) held in Austin, Texas, a city that has become such a hub for new technology that is has garnered the nickname “Silicon Hills”. The festival, a marathon of films, presents many categories, from competitions between state high schools to highly anticipated big-budget Hollywood comedies. In the evenings, attendees merrymake at the cinema bar where independent filmmakers and big industry names happily mingle with the crowd. 6 – 8  March

7. Berlin International Film Festival

The 69th edition of the Berlin International Film Festival, the Berlinale, takes place h. Founded in 1951 by the Western Allies in order to create a showcase of the free world, the Berlinale is one of the world’s top three festivals film festivals alongside Venice and Cannes. For two weeks, the vibrant German capital lives off the frenetic pace of the festival and the parties that surround it. Last year18 films competed for the prestigious Golden Bear which was ultimately rewarded to Touch Me Not, a Romanian drama directed by Adina Pintilie. 7 – 17 February


The red carpet of Berlinale

8. TIFF, Toronto – Canada

Founded in 1976, this cinematic event is as lively and influential as those of Venice, Cannes and Berlin, and is held every year on the first Thursday of September. Considered by some to be a trial run for the awards season, the Toronto International Film Festival indeed often serves as a springboard for an Oscar. More than 300 films are screened during this festival that gets most of its inspiration from the cultural diversity of Toronto. 5 – 15 September

9. MIFF, Melbourne – Australia

The Melbourne International Film Festival is undoubtedly one of Australia’s most important events, always featuring a selection of auteur films, short films, feature films and documentaries that bring international cinema to the forefront. The opening night usually takes place at Melbourne‘s Regent Theater with the screening of one of the festival’s featured films. The MIFF also welcomes children and families, as the programme always includes animated films at a reduced price for the youngest children. 1 – 18 August

10. HKIFF, Hong Kong – China

The Hong Kong International Film Festival is organized every year by the Hong Kong International Film Festival Society, a nonprofit and nongovernmental organization committed to promoting the arts and the undertaking of film production with an international dimension. This wide panorama of Asian and international production showcases work from more than 50 countries. The Society aims to introduce international cinema to an Asian audience while simultaneously revealing the new dimensions of Hong Kong’s film production. 18 March – 1 April

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