VENICE FILM FESTIVAL 2009: Giuseppe Tornatore’s BAARÌA to open 66th Festival

, Associate Editor, Features

God knows how many Twitch writers “work” on the always thoroughly Twitch reported Toronto International Film Festival. Shortly before that party starts though, another one takes place at the other side of the ocean: la Mostra Internationale d’Arte Cinematografica, also known as the Venice International Film Festival. Twitch writer and GhibliWorld editor-in-chief Peter van der Lugt will be present to cover it for Twitch.

This year Venice, already in its the 66th edition and prolonged with yet another festival direction by Marco Müller, will be handing out life time achievement awards to John Lasseter and the other Pixar directors. Furthermore announced are world premiere screenings of Toy Story and Toy Story 2 in 3D, excerpt previews of "The Princess and the Frog" and an extensive Disney • Pixar Animation Master Class. The rest of Venice’s program is yet to be revealed, except for Venice’s opening film, which was announced yesterday. BAARÌA, the latest film directed and written by Academy Award winner Giuseppe Tornatore (Cinema Paradiso, Malèna), will open the film fest on September 2nd.

BAARÌA, to screen in competition to contend for a Golden Lion, is not only the Italian film industry’s most costly production for many years, it is the first Italian film to open the Venice Film Festival for two decades. According to Tornatore:

" BAARÌA is an ancient sound, a magic formula, a key. The only one capable of opening the rusty box in which the meaning of my most personal film is hidden. An amusing and wistful story, of great loves and irresistible utopian dreams. A legend thronged with heroes... But BAARÌA is also the name of a Sicilian town where the people’s lives unfold along the main street. A few hundred metres, no more. But if you walk up and down it for years, you can learn what the whole world will never be able to teach you".

The 66th edition of the Venice International Film Festival is to be held at the Venice Lido from 2 to 12 September 2009. A behind the scenes look of BAARÌA can be found here.

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