Paolo Bertolin, programming correspondent for the Venice International Film Festival, is in Australia this month, hosted by Screen Australia, to view new films for pre-selection.
Paolo is interested in seeing new feature films (drama and documentary) of 70 minutes or longer that will not screen publicly before the festival. In addition, he will take new premiere-status short films under 20 minutes long, for viewing by the short film selectors back in Venice.
Venice International Film Festival, organised by La Biennale di Venezia, is the oldest and one of the most prestigious film festivals in the world. The 72nd edition will take place 2–12 September 2015. From an industry perspective, the festival is known for its strict eligibility criteria, the relatively small number of films in its program and for the major media attention and kudos of screenings and red carpet activities. A launch at Venice can be strategically important in the life of a film and for the careers of its filmmakers.
World premiere status is a prerequisite for all films at Venice, and the festival is made up of these sections:
• Venezia 72, an international competition for 20 feature films (70 plus minutes)
• Out of Competition for 12 feature films, including the Midnight time slot
• Orizzonti competition for 20 feature films from newer filmmakers plus short films of up to 20 minutes duration
• Venice Classics, the exception to world premiere status.
There are also two independent parallel sections to which films must be entered separately:
• International Critics’ Week – eight debut works selected by the Syndicate of Italian Film Critics
• Venice Days – 12 features or documentaries, promoted by the association of Italian film directors and authors.
The Venice Film Market takes place during the festival and attracts international buyers and sellers.
Filmmakers interested in getting their films into Venice must:
• Check eligibility and regulations at the festival’s website – www.labiennale.org/en/cinema/regulations
• Contact Dale Fairbairn at Screen Australia via email email@example.com
• Submit films on DVD to Screen Australia by Wednesday 10 June 2015.