Sitges 2010 Announces First Wave Of Programming

Todd Brown, Founder and Editor
It's been called the Cannes of genre cinema an the first wave of programming has been announced for Sitges 2010, a lineup featuring the best in genre film of all types from all around the globe. Here's the full announcement!

The Shining celebrates its 30th anniversary and the 43rd SITGES - International Fantasy Film Festival of Catalonia, that will take place from 7 to 17 October, would like pay homage to it through the image for this year's official poster. The Shining (1980), by Stanley Kubrick, is one of the few undoubtedly classic horror films that still holds up with the passage of time, going beyond the genre and the director himself.

The Festival will also be remembering the 25th anniversary of Back to the Future by Robert Zemeckis, offer a special tribute to the deceased Paul Naschy with the screening of the documentary El hombre que vio llorar a Frankenstein, and will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of Psycho by Alfred Hitchcock.

The OFFICIAL FANTÀSTIC SELECTION, in and out of competition, will be following several different lines: the vampire myth craze; new themes and new ways of conceiving the genre with an unconventional air; cinema with explicit violence and a certain dose of cruelty and, finally, the most surprising auteur films that are opening up new means of expression.

Following these line we'll be presenting films like Outrage, the return of Takeshi Kitano to gangster and yakuza cinema ten years after Brother; A Woman, a Gun and a Noodle Shop, by the famous Chinese director Yimou Zhang who has done a remake of Blood Simple by the Cohen brothers in an imaginary tone; The New Daughter, Spanish director Luiso Berdejo's incursion into Hollywood starring Kevin Costner; A Serbian Film (Srdjan Spasojevic), a controversial, extreme movie that will be considered the Festival shocker; Easy Money (Daniel Espinosa), a film that's taking Sweden by storm, based on the noir novel by Jen Lapidus, the new sensation after the Millenium trilogy; Dream Home (Pang Ho-cheung), the most radical Asian movie in recent years; The Turkish Kosmos (Reha Erdem); The Last Exorcism (Daniel Stamm), one of the most awaited films by fans that was all the rage at the latest Berlin and Cannes festivals, produced by and starring Eli Roth; Kaboom (Gregg Araki), a tasteful, North American indie film that combines comedy and horror; Rubber (Quentin Dupieux), about a killer tire; Mexican We Are What We Are (Jorge Michel Grau) and the Uruguayan The Silent House (Gustavo Hernández), both opening doors for Latin American cinema; and two that were previously announced: the undisputed winner of the recent Cannes Film Festival Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, by Thai director Apichatpong Weerasethakul, will have its Spanish premiere in Sitges, and Let me in (Matt Reeves), a remake of the highly successful Let the right one in, will be opening this selection.

Representing Catalan and Spanish cinema is the outstanding, previously announced opening film, Julia's Eyes, Guillem Morales's second movie starring Belén Rueda and Lluís Homar. The Official Selection will also be screening Agnosia, Eugenio Mira's second film starring Eduardo Noriega, Bárbara Goenaga and Sergi Mateu, among others; and 14 Days with Victor, by Román Parrado, shot between Barcelona and London, that revolves around the limits of contemporary art, human degradation and death.

The ANIMA'T section will be focusing on Japanese animation's enormous contribution, highlighting the film that's been the most important of the year in Japan: Welcome to the Space Show (Koji Masunari).

NOVES VISIONS (Ficció, No Ficció and Discovery) will continue with its proposals, this year with even more impetus after the warm welcome it received last year from both audiences and critics. The winner of the past Sundance Festival, Catfish (Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost) will be opening the section, that will be including several midnight screenings this year with films like Trash Humpers, by the controversial Harmony Korine. The movie that Sónar 2010 got its image from, Finisterrae (Sergio Caballero), will be shown at a special screening. NV-No Ficció will be screening films like The People vs. George Lucas (Alexandre O. Philippe) about the Star Wars fan phenomenon; La bocca del lupo (Pietro Marcello), a half fictional - half documentary film revolving around a love story with homosexual touches that takes place in several different timelines Terence Davies-style, and the mockumentary Vampires (Vincent Lannoo). NV-Discovery will be presenting young and independent works like Tony (Gerard Johnson), about an ultra-realistic serial killer in the streets of London. Finally, in the NV-Ficció section you can see interesting films like Sound of Noise (Johannes Stjärne Nilsson and Ola Simonsson), Red, White and Blue (Simon Rumley), a disturbing vision that's reminiscent of Haneke's cinema, La Doppia Ora (Giuseppe Capotondi), a fascinating combination of oneiric thriller and a movie construction on the genre borderline plus Strayed (Akan Satayev), a horror production from Kazakhstan.

This section includes Nova Autoria, resulting from the cooperation among SGAE, Institut Buñuel, the festival and the Catalan film schools. Its objective is discovering new talents and promoting newcoming filmmakers, as well as screening the best works by film school students in Catalonia.

Starting from Noves Visions but covering other sections as well, the Festival will offer a view of tsocial networks, highlighting films like Chatroom (Hideo Nakata) in NV Ficció and Life 2.0 (Jason Spingarn-Koff) in NV-No Ficció.

The CASA ASIA section will be focusing on the return of martial arts movies, highlighting productions from Hong Kong and China, with the outstanding Ip Man 2 (Wilson Yip), the sequel to last year's winning film, and where you will also discover the new cinema from Vietnam with the super-hit Clash (Le Thanh Son), the first Vietnamese martial arts production with big stars and an attractive visual level.

3D CINEMA will be back in Sitges; one of the most outstanding films will certainly be the Spanish stop-motion animation production O Apóstolo (Fernando Cortizo).

SEVEN CHANCES arrives with seven critics who will choose their seven undoubtedly significant films, among which L'Enfer d'Henri-Georges Clouzot (Serge Bromberg and Ruxandra Medrea) has already been confirmed, a documentary that reconstructs the lost film by the aforementioned director.

Following last year's wake, the Els altres fantàstics retrospective will take a look at productions that vindicate atypical genre cinema by Catalan and Spanish filmmakers who never frequented it assiduously. This is the case with Pedro Olea and the premiere of the new copy, made Spanish Film Library, of The Ancines Woods, considered to be one of the cornerstone films in Spanish horror cinema plus movies by Carlos Saura and Eugenio Martín, among other directors.

The Festival will also be programming a series focusing on the idea of Cinema and Time offering European films with an art house perspective and with the screening of a classic, The Time Machine, by George Pal, an emblematic Festival symbol that is the image for one of its honorary awards.

MIDNIGHT X-TREME will be especially aimed at the most radical genre fans, with a strong emphasis on the most extreme and gore cinema, like the Thai Slice (Kongkiat Khomsiri), the Australian Primal (Josh Reed), the North American The Violent Kind (The Butchers Brothers) and the amusing Norweigan Ninja (Thomas Cappelen Malling). In addition there will be Mondo Macabro, La nit més zombie and Japan Madness marathons.

CATALAN FILMS & TV, in collaboration with Televisió de Catalunya, will be organizing a series of activities for the Catalan cinema industry. First of all, October 15th will be videogame day with lectures focusing on themes like Audiovisuals and videogames, social networks, Cool Hunting and 3D. A co-production encounter is also being organized between the Catalan, Brazilian and Italian industries. This encounter will be reflected in the Festival's film selection too, including a cross-sectional focus on these two countries. Just some of the participating films are: La Doppia Ora (NV Ficció), La bocca del lupo (NV No Ficció), Suspiria (Dario Argento), plus Double Nights as a part of Sitges Clàssics with a screening called Italian Grindhouse with Italian exploitation cinema from the 70's and 80's.

The younger audience's film opinions will also be expressed this year through the SITGES 2010 - International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia's 6th Carnet Jove Jury. The Carnet Jove Jury, made up of five young men and women between the ages of eighteen and thirty, will be handing out two awards: The Award for Best Motion Picture in the Official Fantàstic Selection and the Jury Award for Best Motion Picture in the Midnight X-Treme Section. The Jury, created by the Festival's management team and the Agència Catalana de la Joventut Carnet Jove's Connecta't Program,< is a great opportunity for young film lovers as well as an explicit acknowledgement of the young audience, that year after year have proven themselves to be the Festival's most loyal both in the cinemas as well as at parallel activities.

BRIGADOON will continue to be an alternative venue offering gore, kitsch and underground films, committed to using DVD as a format to promote fantastic cinema in particular and avid movie-going in general and where, year after year, the Paul Naschy Award is given to the best short film and the Brigadoon Nosferatu Award in acknowledgment of the career of an important, representative genre figure.

SITGES and FIB HEINEKEN, two of the Mediterranean cultural proposals with the greatest international significance have decided to share both musical and movie programs and projects. At the upcoming FIB, starting this Thursday, you can see the preview of Splice, by Vincenzo Natali, that was screened at SITGES 09 and will be premiering on July 30th (distributed by Vértice Cine).


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