The 2019 RIFFA is taking giant steps, expanding to multiple venues, four days of film screenings at the Cineplex Cinemas Normanview, with an Opening Night on August 13 and Awards Ceremony on August 17 at Casino Regina. This year’s Festival will showcase 142 films from 33 countries in 23 different languages, a unique cultural experience through the lens of local and international filmmakers.
RIFFA is honoured to release the 2019 Film festival schedule with 13 World Premieres, 74 Canadian Premieres, 47 Saskatchewan Premieres. The Short Films line-up includes 36 International Short Films, 17 Canadian Shorts, 26 Animated Short Films, 22 Student Short Films and 5 Indigenous Short Films. Feature-length films include 9 International Feature Films, 3 Canadian Feature Films, 10 Canadian Documentaries and 9 International Documentaries. RIFFA is equally proud that a total of seventy (70 female directors for the 142 films) female directors are contributing to this year’s showcase.
Opening Night features a Spotlight on Saskatchewan talent For the last 6 months a group of dedicated film industry volunteers have been creating films with students living with mental illness. The Look, Film and Fine Arts Program is an essential part of the RIFFA Academy and will be featured on August 13th. That same evening five Saskatchewan films will be presented followed by a Q&A session with film directors.
Several events will take place during the Festival. RIFFA and the MacKenzie Art Gallery will present A Planet in Peril featuring a trilogy of films by renowned Canadian Director Jennifer Baichwal, starting August 1, 8 with the final film screening on August 15th, during the festival. The final film will be followed by a discussion with Jennifer Baichwal and a distinguished panel of guests.
In its commitment to the Saskatchewan Film Industry, RIFFA has invited the four largest film and media funds in the country to address their support to the industry. Meet the Funders Panel will provide a unique opportunity for filmmakers and funders to meet, mingle and discuss financing options. The Future is Indigenous – A Master Class with Skawennati, co-founder and co-director of Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace on the Indigital Revolution will precede the Indigenous Showcase on August 14th. RIFFA is also honoured to have the Chair of the International Jury and head of the international federation of film critics (FIPRESCI) deliver a Master Class on “What Are Film Critics Good For?” Klaus Eder is a respected Jury member at Cannes, TIFF and Venice film festivals. Renowned film critic, scholar and General Secretary of the International Federation of Film Critics.
A new feature at this year’s festival, RIFFA’s programming team paid close attention to the Grouping of Films, thus creating an attractive line-up of genres, topics, and languages. Highlights include the Indigenous Showcase, French, Spanish and German Language Showcases and a powerful line-up of international documentaries. Films that are not included in the competition but extremely relevant to Saskatchewan such as nipawistanmâsowin: We Will Stand UP by director Tasha Hubbard have been included in the showcase. Film Screenings. bring together talented filmmakers to share their stories and the popular RIFFA Q & A session with visiting filmmakers, the local industry and the general public to engage in meaningful conversations.
The Filmmakers Hosted Program will provide various opportunities to visiting filmmakers and the local industry to connect. This will not only offer visiting filmmakers the opportunity to get to know Regina, it will provide local industry with great connections across Canada, into the US and across the globe.
One of the great accomplishments of RIFFA 2019 is in the extraordinary talent of our Jury. The head of the International Federation of Film Critics (FEPRESCI) Klaus Elder, from Germany, has been appointed as the 2019 RIFFA International Jury Chair. Mr. Eder has served as a jury member for over 50 renowned film festivals around the world, including; TIFF, Cannes and Venice. Multiple Award winning director and renowned Canadian director Patricia Rozema will lead the Canadian Jury (Canadian Jury Chair).