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Locarno 2020 – For the Future of Films is launching The Films After Tomorrow, the first of a series of initiatives created for this highly unusual year in which the physical event of the Festival has been canceled. The first Locarno 2020 project is dedicated to supporting independent filmmaking. It will invest a part of the prize money for full-length features to support productions put on hold because of the health crisis. From a final selection of 10 international and 10 Swiss productions, drawn up by the Artistic Director Lili Hinstin and her team, two juries will pick the winners of two Pardo 2020 awards, alongside other prizes to be announced in the forthcoming weeks. The project will be also open to the public, with movie fans able to discover or rediscover milestones in the history of the Locarno Film Festival through a series of titles chosen by the 20 shortlisted directors.
In line with the plans outlined in late April, the Locarno Film Festival is pleased to announce The Films After Tomorrow, a new project from Locarno 2020 – For the Future of Films. The overarching theme is for the Festival — together with its partners — to redefine its role within the context of the Covid-19 global pandemic, which has brought about the cancellation of the physical event. To maintain its vision and engagement in this unprecedented situation and keep faith with both public and partners, the Locarno Film Festival is launching as its initial project a support fund for film production, as the sector is rocked by a profound crisis, with many titles no longer certain of completion. With work on set and location at a standstill and footage languishing in the cutting room, cast and crew of many films risk seeing their efforts over months and years come to nothing. The Locarno Film Festival has decided to step into this difficult situation and send a signal of solidarity to all players in the film industry to help ensure that festivalgoers of the future will still be able to enjoy quality cinema.
The Films After Tomorrow will feature a competition of 10 international and 10 Swiss productions on which work has been halted because of the global pandemic. The directors of the 20 films selected will introduce themselves to the public online from August 5 to 15, sharing their personal vision by considering the history of the Locarno Film Festival and presenting a film that influenced them. In parallel, two international juries chosen by the Artistic Director and her programming committee will assess the 20 entries and will confer several prizes on Saturday, August 15, including two Pardo 2020 awards of 70,000 Swiss francs each. Aside from the recognition conferred, these prizes will provide critical support in assisting the prizewinners to reach their natural destination in theaters.
To qualify for the competition, films must be full-length features (min. 70 minutes) intended for theatrical distribution which have been put on hold by the Coronavirus lockdown, either just before the start of shooting, or during shooting or editing. Projects can be submitted starting today, May 12, until May 27, 2020, using the online application form here: http://www.locarnofestival.ch/TheFilmsAfterTomorrow
The Artistic Director of the Locarno Film Festival and her team will be responsible for making the final selection of 10 international projects and 10 Swiss projects. These will be announced on June 25, before being presented to the two international juries for The Films After Tomorrow. The section of the competition The Films After Tomorrow dedicated to Swiss productions, which will feature 10 projects, will be at the discretion of the Artistic Director and her team and will be organized and promoted in collaboration with SWISS FILMS.
Artistic Director Lili Hinstin: “At this difficult time, we tried to come up with a project that would lend a hand to the kind of auteur films that are the bedrock of our program – and that is already tough to produce. The Pardo 2020 awards are a small incentive to show that we stand with the film industry. Together with the directors selected we will make a map of the Festival for our audience, with landmark films that continue to have an influence on great cinema today. Meanwhile, we continue to work on further projects for Locarno 2020. We will do our very best to develop concepts for those areas where we can be of most help.”
The Films After Tomorrow initiative will be open to the public, with movie fans able to take part in the Locarno Film Festival in an entirely new way. The 20 directors selected will join in the creation of a coordinated program of screenings, public discussions, and masterclasses, accessible via a range of platforms. Each filmmaker will notably be asked to choose a title from the history of the Locarno Film Festival, taking a personal step towards a collective journey through the history of the event which will be viewable online.
The Films After Tomorrow is the first in a series of projects for Locarno 2020 – For the Future of Films, an edition of the Festival which will be gradually revealed to industry, press, and public as it unfolds over the next few weeks.