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Locarno Film Festival kicks off the edition that focuses on Portugal

The 71st Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland begins today, including two Portuguese films in competition and the screening of new films by Vicente Alves do Ó, Rodrigo Areias and Tiago Hespanha, in the post-production phase.

“3 years later,” short film by Marco Amaral, will compete in the “Pardi di domani” section, while the feature film “Sobre tudo sobre nada”, Dídio Pestana’s first work, was selected for the section “Signs of Life” .

There are also two Portuguese co-productions at the festival: “Grbavica”, from the Catalan Manel Raga Raga (Portugal / Bosnia and Herzegovina / Spain), in the section “Pardi di domani” and “How Fernando Pessoa saved Portugal” (Portugal / France / Belgium) of the American director Eugène Green, with Portuguese cast, in the program “Signs of life”.

This year, Portuguese cinema will focus on the festival’s “First Look” program, which will feature six films in the post-production phase for a audience of professionals, programmers, exhibitors, distributors and producers.

According to information available on the festival’s website, the films chosen were “Campo”, by Tiago Hespanha, “Gabriel” by Nuno Bernardo, “Golpe de Sol” by Vicente Alves do Ó, “Hálito Azul” by Rodrigo Areias, “Terra” by Hiroatsu Suzuki and Rossana Torres, and “Viveiro” by Pedro Filipe Marques.

The six films are expected to be ready between September and November this year.

In February, when the festival announced the choice of Portugal for this program, Locarno’s deputy artistic director, Nadia Dresti, stated that “Portuguese cinema has always been acclaimed for its artistic excellence by critics, but at the same time it has captivated distributors and major international festivals.”

In partnership with the Film and Audiovisual Institute (ICA), the program aims to ensure the finalization and internationalization of the films to be selected.

The 71st edition of the Locarno festival, running until 11 August, includes other Portuguese films, two of which are in competition.

The jury “Pardi di domani”, chaired by the French director Yann Gonzalez, also includes the Portuguese director Marta Mateus and the Nepalese director Deepak Rauniyar.

This will be the last festival under the artistic direction of Carlo Chatrian, invited to take the same position at the Berlin Film Festival in 2020, in partnership with Mariette Rissenbeek.

The festival will open with “Les beaux esprits” by Vianney Lebasque, and will end with “I feel good” by Benoît Delépine and Gustave Kervern.

Also worthy of mention is the presence of the Brazilian films “Temporada” by André Novais Oliveira and “Seduction of the flesh” by Júlio Bressane, both in competition and world premiere.

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