The Melbourne International Film Festival launched its 62nd program on Tuesday night. Here are the statistics:
- A total of 310 films
- 17 program strands
- 10 world premieres
- 166 Australian premieres
- 26 forums
- 20 international guests
- over 60 local guests
- 5 venues
And getting into more depth – Tim Winton’s The Turning will be the centrepiece film to be screened at the festival’s halfway point, while All Is Lost, which is almost entirely dialogue-free, was announced as the closing night film.
The Turning is an adaption of Australian author Tim Winton’s bestselling novel. It is made up of 17 chapters, each with a different director. Mia Wasikowska (perhaps best known for her role as Alice in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland) and David Wenham are making their debuts as directors alongside established directors such as Warwick Thornton (Samson and Delilah) and Tony Ayres (Walking on Water, The Home Song Stories).
There’s a lot more local talent on display in the Australian Showcase section, with three MIFF Premiere Fund-supported films premiering: These Final Hours, Galore and In Bob We Trust. Other Australian films include Red Obsession, Mystery Road and Lygon St – Si Parlo Italiano.
It’s not all about Australia though. This year, MIFF is spotlighting Arabic cinema, featuring films such as Omar, Coming Forth by Day and Wadjda. 70s and 80s cult Italian horror films get a look in, as do sport films. Tried and tested new films from Cannes are also making their way down, and there will be a very interesting Animation Showcase.
Special events will include:
- MIFF 53rd Short Awards: Eligible short films will be competing for a a total cash prize pool of $42,000, with winners eligible to submit for nomination at the 2014 Academy Awards.
- Talking Pictures: Discussions designed to provoke thought and arguments about cinema with the Festival’s guests.
- Planetarium Fulldome Showcase: Melbourne Planetarium will be hosting full dome projection screenings with 7.1 surround sound in two special programs.
Check out the full program at the MIFF website.