Valladolid will host one of Spain’s most international film festivals which aims to promote independent cinema

 

Valladolid will once again become the Spanish capital of independent cinema, with the celebration of the 64th edition of the International Film Week of Valladolid. The festival, is one of the oldest and most important in Spain along with San Sebastián and Sitges. This year the special guest host will be the Andalusian actress Belén Cuesta, who will read the letter from the festival director, Javier Angulo.

The Spanish actress is well known for her roles in successful productions such as Ocho apellidos catalanes, La llamada, Paquita Salas and more recently for her role in the international phenomenon La Casa de Papel, (Money Heist) she is also part of the cast for two of the films selected for the ‘Spanish Cinema’ section: Litus, by Dani de la Orden; and Parking, by Tudor Giurgiu.

 

La actriz Belén Cuesta será la madrina de la gala de inauguración de la 64.ª Seminci. EFE/Kiko Huesca

 

Georgia, guest country

 

With the projection of some twenty titles made over the last two decades, Georgia will be the guest country of this edition. Productions by eminent directors such as Otar Iosseliani, winner in Venice, Berlin and Mar de Plata, and younger directors such as Nana Ekvtimishvili, Simon Groß, George Ovashvili and Ana Urushadze. The retrospective, in collaboration with the Georgian National Film Center (GNFC), will feature short and feature-length fiction films and documentaries and be accompanied by a brief publication detailing the contents.

China will also be present at the Seminci, which in its 64th edition will dedicate a retrospective to the most recent cinema of this country with some of its most significant works, produced in the last decade, which highlight the vitality of Chinese cinematography. The title of this retrospective will be: Breaking the Barriers: Chinese Cinema of the Last Decade.

 

A prestigious international jury

 

Josefina Molina, Spanish film and theatre director and screenwriter, will be the president of the International Jury for this year’s edition. She will be accompanied by other important figures from the world of cinema, journalism and literature, from countries such as Georgia, India and Canada, and they will choose the best feature and short films in the official section. Philippe Lesage, director of Genesis, last year’s Golden Spike winner, will be joined by Rosa Montero, Thierry Foste, Dilip Mehta and Keti Machavariani.

Seminci’s long history

 

The first edition of what we know today as the International Film Week of Valladolid was held in March 1956, and was called “Religious Film Week”. At that time, it formed part of the Easter celebrations and its purpose was to transmit Catholic moral values. In 1960 it became known as the “International Week of Religious Cinema and Human Values”, broadening the subject matter of the films, and the current main prize, the Golden Spike, began to be awarded.

It was in 1973 when the festival adopted its current name, due to the increasing number of films entering the competition and the interest from producers to present their work in the festival. Later on, the categories for Best Actor /Actress (1979), Best Screenplay (1984), Best First Film (1989), Official Jury Award (1991) and Best New Director (1992) and other awards were introduced.