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Biografilm Program 2016

The 12th edition of Biografilm Festival | International Celebration of Lives, the only international event entirely committed to promote and support biographies and life tales, took place in Bologna from the 10th to the 20th of June 2016.

From the 10th to the 20th of June 2016 Biografilm has returned to Bologna to mark its twelfth edition. The Festival is the number one international event decidated to biopic films and this year the programme is rich in premieres, internationally renowned guests and unmissable musical events. The Festival has always been noted for its ability to create a programme which allows the masters of world cinema to sit comfortably alongside new talent who are destined for success in the world of cinema (for example Joshua Oppenheimer).

In 2016 the Festival reinforced its reputation for discovering talent by dedicating space within its two competitive sections for authors and films who are still to be discovered.

Between the 10 films in International Competition, traditionally populated with the most famous and world-renowned masters of documentary cinema and films which have won awards at the most important film festivals across the world, there are three world premieres.

Every year Biografilm Italia is dedicated to screening the best Italian produced documentary films, the strength of emerging talent alongside world premieres confirm the strength of Italian cinema and demonstrate that this isn’t just a one off, it is worth highlighting that amongst the films in the section, four are first works.  

The special attention towards new talent doesn’t mean that there won’t also be well-known and highly-regarded filmmakers. This year’s Festival will see works by distinguished directors from Werner Herzog to Alex Gibney, Morgan Neville to Hegedus and Pennebaker to the Maysles brothers.

Gael Garcia Bernal, founder of Ambulante | Gira de documentales

Best of Fest is the area of the Festival where we show films which have been particularly well-received by the public and critics at festivals from across the world and which will receive their Italian premiere at Biografilm. Within Best of Fest it is also worth noting the special dedication which Biografilm gives to Ambulante Festival | Gira de Documentales a festival founded by Gael García Bernal, there will be a selection of highlights from the Festival and will include one which is one of the most important films of global documentary cinema. From Mexico we go to North Korea, a country famous for its ‘not-welcome’ approach to outsiders, and we are given a rare insight into the country thanks to a selection of documentaries produced in the country of  Kim Jong-un. The titles which make up this part of the section which will be announced within the next few weeks.

Thanks to this ability to discover talent and promote the masters of cinema at the same time, Biografilm gives a 360 degree view of the world in which we currently live at all levels and offers a vital insight and understanding of the world.

Contemporary Lives is the section of the Festival dedicated to premieres about persons and discussions which are relevant in the current world we live.

In the wake of the relevance of last year’s theme, Vite Connesse, the theme of this edition of the festival is more timeley than ever: THE BRAND NEW WORLD – RACCONTARE LA CIVILTÀ DIGITALE. The internet is fully immersed in our everyday lives which is unbelievable if we take into consideration how far-fetched we once thought it to be, it is this which has led the heavy-weights of cinema to examine and interrogate this new world which has taken over our lives.

Just as the web is characterised by its lack of confinements we look at territorial borders, theoretical, literal and imagined, which are all too often manmade: NO BORDERS is a selection of documentaries from all over the world with the aim of crossing boundaries and overriding geographical barriers.

However, Biografilm isn’t only documentaries, fiction cinema and biopics make up a crucial part of the DNA of the Festival. Biografilm Europa returns with its selection of European produced biopics. In 2014 the section celebrated the work of Lenny Abrahamson, with his work being brought to attention recently for his nominations at the Academy Awards for his film Room, and after in 2015 rediscovered the work of Jaco Van Dormael with The Brand New Testament, Biografilm Worldwide on the other hand is dedicated to documentaries made outside of Europe.

The Festival also includes the unmissable Biografilm Arte (with a special focus dedicated to the artist Christo) and Biografilm Music sections, BIO TO B | DOC&BIOPIC BUSINESS MEETING (16-18 June) is the part of the Festival dedicated to networking and business to business meetings between industry professionals, BioToB is in collaboration with D.E-R. Documentaristi Emilia Romagna e Doc/it Documentaristi Italiani, last but not least there will be a host of free concerts put on at Parco del Cavaticcio between 1-21 June to form BIO PARCO.