Italy OnScreen Today - New York Film&TvSeries Fest was born to promote Italian contemporary cinema and audiovisual abroad. Produced by the Artistic Soul Association, founded and directed by Loredana Commonara.Last year we all enjoyed a splendid evening at Lincoln Center, honored by the presence of Marco Bellocchio and Pierfrancesco Favino. We were also joined by Academy-Award-winner James Ivory, Paul Haggis, Robert Moresco, Consul-General Francesco Genuardi, Deputy UN Ambassador Stefano Stefanile, and the Director of the Italian Cultural Institute, Paolo Barlera. With a standing-room only crowd. We greeted each other in this festive atmosphere, with handshakes and family photos. After screening more than twelve films at theaters from New York to Miami, we said our goodbyes. Then 2020 arrived, a year in which we came to know all too well the multifaceted reality of the absurd, what it has taken away and what it has taught us. One of the sectors that paid a high price, at every level, was the performing arts and cinema, since they represent so comprehensively the idea of sociality, togetherness, and sharing. But many people worked hard to show that we cannot live without culture, because culture offers us a place of refuge during periods of isolation: books, virtual museum visits, as well as films, TV series, and plays projected on the screens of televisions, PCs, and tablets. In these difficult times, culture, in all its forms and declensions, has provided us with company, support, solutions and also discoveries.For our part, we refused to quit, and decided we would find the right way to organize this year's festival. Italian cinema did not cease production, in fact: many films had to deal with closed movie theaters while many productions had to wind their way through new regulations in order to be completed. The quality of this year's films is very high, and has been applauded and confirmed by the juries of the international festivals: many affirmed directors and – what is particularly satisfying – many first-time directors have found a home for their work. At the same time, the abilities and talents of our actors and actresses offered an added value recognized at the international level.We feel confident that we have found the right balance among the various possible ways this festival could have been held. Thanks to Mymovieslive, the Italian platform that since 2010 has made it possible to stream Italian films, and which this year in particular has accompanied Italian cinema to the top film festivals, the fifth edition of Italy On-Screen Today – New York Film&TvSeries Fest will be streamed (on MyMovies.it) , on an exceptional basis, throughout the United States. We have also selected a new schedule: from December 23 to 29, in order to keep you company during the exceptional Christmas season of this exceptional year.So here we are ready once again to bring to the United States the very best in contemporary Italian cinema. We have even increased the number of films we are bringing you, almost all of them premiers. But it is not just a question of numbers.First of all, this year offered us a truly special opportunity to program many brand-new films by top Italian directors which had just been released in the movie theaters. We were also blessed with the first and second films of debut Italian directors. Finally, documentaries, which have also been part of our programming, continue to represent one of the most eclectic genres in terms of experimenting with cinematic language. We will get a sample of some of the latest developments in Italian cinema, which will be explored in greater depth at next year's edition. I am referring to films and documentaries dedicated to the environment and pollution at a moment in which global warming and safeguarding the planet have become a collective emergency, and issues on which we have to reflect and that we must engage by promoting appropriate lifestyles and behaviors. This is absolutely new: for the first time we will screen in New York a selection of contemporary Italian TV series, thanks to HBO, SKY, Wildside, The Apartment, Cattleya, Itv Studios, Rai Fiction and Rai Com. A debut edition that will be further developed and explored next year. The series represents the cutting edge in the audiovisual sector: these films are rooted in the everyday reality of the viewer, and have led to an increase in players and technological support, and have redefined the distribution markets; they are also accompanied by a dedicated school of criticism, specialized in writing and consumption. This is why we wish to broaden our perspective on Italian production to embrace the wider spectrum of audiovisual language. We have great projects in store for next year.And, of course, we have not forgotten our guests and our prizes, because cinema is socializing and it is above all a festival. When we sat down to envision the many ways of organizing a festival in the new environment, there was great regret that we would have to forego the presence of the many artists who have participated over the years. We have therefore organized exclusive on-line connections, in order to shorten the distances as much as possible, until the day when we can once again shake hands.It is with no small amount of emotion, therefore, that we announce this year's winners of the Wind of Europe International Award: this year, the prize will go to Cristina Comencini, Gabriele Muccino, Luca Guadagnino, Alba Rohrwacher and Saverio Costanzo who will talk about his extraordinarily successful TV series My Brilliant Friend. Five internationally-acclaimed talents, distinct artistic personalities. We will have the pleasure to hear their thoughts on their films and Series during special Q&A's, which will be available on our platform together with their films.This year's special contents also include two panels moderated by the screenwriter Simona Nobile. The first panel aims to analyze the figure of the Casting Director, now an exciting career in film production, The casting director's crucial role in the creation of films and television series, in conversation with Lilia Hartmann Trapani, author of the book The casting director's craft, and Hon. Nicola Acunzo. The second panel aims to analyze and discuss the international mass production of Tv Series, Directing and Showrunning in the tv arena: new challenges and opportunities, in conversation with award - winning director, producer, show runner Allan Arkush and director Carlo Carlei.In bidding our farewells this year, we also express our hopes that we can soon meet again in the movie theaters: with a big screen, in the darkness of the theater, with quality loudspeakers, and in a room filled with other viewers. This is our sincere "Arrivederci" until next year.The fifth edition was made possible thanks to the contribution of the Italian Ministry for Cultural Assets and Activities and for Tourism - General Directorate of Cinema and Audiovisual, with the support of Consulate General of Italy in New York, Italian Cultural Institutes of New York, in collaboration with Leone Film Group, Rai Cinema, Casa Zerilli-Marimò of New York University, Stony Brook University, "La giornata mondiale del cinema italiano" with the patronage of Regione Lazio, Strategica Communication, APA (Association of Audiovisual Producers) and Roma-Lazio Film Commission. As of this year, in partnership with Italy for Movies (www.italyformovies.it), the national portal for production locations and incentives coordinated by the General Directorate for Cinema and Audiovisual of MiBACT, administered by the Istituto Luce-Cinecittà in collaboration with the Italian Film Commission, available also on the app which can be downloaded at digital stores.
GREETINGS FROM THE ITALIAN AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED STATES ARMANDO VARRICCHIO
ITALY FOR MOVIES
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