September 27th to October 12th will be when this year’s Vancouver International Film Festival will occur. Lots to look forward to. Hundreds of films and shorts from 75 countries over these 16 days. Last year’s was a record-setter. This year the Film Festival wants to take things further.
You may remember last year I wrote about that year being the 30th for the VIFF, explaining the history and what to the festival showcases. Also you may remember the Festival records that year achieved. What’s also remarkable about last year is the Oscar success of some of the featured films from last year. The Best Picture winning The Artist was featured last year as was the Best Foreign Language Film winner A Separation.
This year’s VIFF also has goals of achieving a lot. There is estimated to be 380 films from 75 countries this year. Canadian and Asian film as well as documentaries are once again expected to be the highlighted genres of film at the Festival. What’s new this time is having the closing gala at the Centre for Performing Arts. Two live performances at the Centre are also expected to take place this year. Also added is a new real-time electronic ticketing system much like the one used at sporting events. The additions came upon the return of a $250,000 gaming grant the Festival once had until it lost its eligibility in 2009 as the government left adult arts groups behind in giving grants out. The grant returned as a result of the provincial government reassessing gaming grants.
Now that the grant is returned, the festival can continue to grow in both attendance and the number of films exhibited as well as the venues showcasing the films. The Granville 7 and its seven cinemas is once again the theatre with the most action. Pacific Cinematheque and the VanCity Theatre are the two other main theatres showing films throughout the sixteen days of the Festival. Temporary theatres showing films include the Park Theatre which will show a pair of films on two separate days and the Vogue Theatre which is scheduled to be a venue on nine of the sixteen days including the opening gala tomorrow night which will feature the screening of Canadian director Deepa Mehta’s Midnight Children.
As for me, I’m scheduled to do six shifts of five hours each. I actually volunteered this morning. It was good. Good to see a lot of volunteers I know back. Also exciting to see what featured films will be playing. I plan on taking in as many films as I can. Like last year, I’ll be aiming for a mix of Canadian, international, shorts and documentaries. I hope to post as many reviews here about the films I have seen. Anyways here’s to another year of film festing. If you want to check out this year’s fest, just go to the official website.