Exciting Sitges News!!

Sitges '09

[REC]2 will be opening the 42nd edition of the SITGES 09 – International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia, to be held from October 2nd to the 12th. Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza return to Sitges -they presented [REC] in 2007- with the eagerly awaited sequel that takes up the events occurring soon after the end of part one: It’s been 15 minutes since the TV camera’s batteries ran out. It’s been 15 minutes since the last images were filmed for the program “While You Sleep” inside the infected building. Outside, a curious crowd gathers behind the area sealed off by the Special Forces. The TV crews are putting on the pressure to find out what the hell is happening…

Alien by Ridley Scott is the inspiration for this year’s edition. The Festival will be including a screening of the director’s favorite version of the movie and will be attended by guests still to be determined.  

The OFFICIAL FANTÀSTIC SELECTION  will include the latest and most eagerly awaited genre films with titles like the vampirical Thirst, by Park Chan-wook; Yatterman , a zany version of the comic of the same name that has been one of the biggest box office hits in Japan, and Crows II, the sequel to the first part emphasizing teen ultra-violence (this one out-of-competition), both by Takashi Miike; Grace, by Paul Solet, representing the best in independent North American horror cinema, that participated in Sundance; Kinatay, by Brillante Mendoza, a literal journey to hell and a paradigmatic example of hyper-realistic horror, that snagged the Best Director Award at Cannes; Kynodontas, by Giorgios Lanthimos,  Un Certain Regard Award winner at Cannes; Musashi, by Mizuho Nishikubo; Surrogates, by Jonathan Mostow, out-of-competition and starring Bruce Willis and Moon, by Duncan Jones, recent winner of the Best Feature Film at the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

Representing Catalan and Spanish cinema are the outstanding Orphan , a North American production by director Jaume Collet-Serra, and Ingrid, by Eduard Cortés, set to become an instant cult movie in European fantasy film.

European cinema will include movies like The Countess, by Julie Delpy, a return to the Countess Dracula myth, and Ne te retourne pas, by Marina de Van, a disturbing tour de force between Monica Belluci and Sophie Marceau.

Animation will be present -besides in the Anima’t category- in Fantàstic with films like the Swedish Metropia, by Tarik Saleh, an animated black and white science fiction movie. On the other hand, ANIMA’T will be including the biggest box office hit of the season in France, Lascars.

In NOVES VISIONS the Festival is banking on international variants of historical and realistic horror, like the Australian Van Diemen’s Land, by Jonathan Auf Der Heide; The Forbidden Door , the consolidation of Indonesian genre cinema or the brutal English docudrama Bronson, by Nicolas Winding Refn.

ORIENT EXPRESS will be including, among others, Goemon, by Kazuaki Kiriya, and Ip Man, by Wilson Yip, featuring Donnie Yen, the world’s number one martial arts expert.

3D FILM will be one of the most important new additions to SITGES 09, with outstanding screenings like The Final Destination and Toy Story 3D.

SEVEN CHANCES will be showing films like Youth Without Youth, by Francis Ford Coppola, or La Maison Nucingen, by Raoul Ruiz, a classic in Sitges.

Regarding tributes, besides the 30th anniversary of Alien, SITGES 09 will be recalling certain flashes from the 80’s, films that represent this decade’s different genre film expressions and that will bring special guests from emblematic movies to the Festival. In this review of classics we will be including an American cut, unreleased in Spain, of The Shining, with extra footage and horror; and A Nightmare on Elm St, with the attendance, among others, of John Saxon.

Another outstanding novelty at this year’s edition is the Els Altres Fantàstics retrospective, that will review productions which embody atypical genre films by Catalan and Spanish filmmakers who don’t usually delve into genre film, like Pedro Olea (A House Without Boundaries ); Antonio Isasi Isasmendi (A Dog Called… Vengeance); Vicente Aranda (The Exquisite Cadaver); or Víctor Erice (The Spirit of the Beehive).

Another of the Festival’s tributes will be dedicated to horror story writer Clive Barker, presenting two movies based on novels of his: Dread and Book of Blood.

MIDNIGHT X-TREME will be setting aside viewing time for the phenomena of the new, most recent extreme Japanese cinema. These midnight screenings will be including zany films like Best Worst Movie, based on the checkered and even grotesque commercial experience of the movie Troll 2, considered to be the worst in history by specialized web sites like rottentomatoes.com; Dead Snow, Lesbian Vampire Killers, Black Dynamite, a tribute to blaxploitation, or Smash cut, the resurrection of the eternal King of Gore Herschell Gordon Lewis.
CATALAN FILMS & TV strengthens its collaboration with the Festival and expands its program of parallel activities, with emphasis on an interactive fiction session led by Televisió de Catalunya. At SITGES 09, CF&TV will be supporting Catalan production through Catalan Focus, will participate in the opening party and will be organizing a workshop on videogames and the interactive fiction industry, designed by experts from TV3. In addition, there will be two sessions dealing with the synergies between animation and videogames where new formats and content distribution channels will be analyzed. In parallel, CF&TV is coordinating the arrival of a delegation of Mexican producers who will participate in a co-production encounter with their Catalan counterparts. Mexico is one of the territories where CF&TV is working on its proceedings plan for 2009 and that’s why it sent a group of companies to the Guadalajara Festival last March.

Sitges 09 – International Fantasy Film Festival of Catalonia continues to be committed to maintaining the spirit of youth, the Festival’s most loyal following. Proof of this is the presence, yet another year, of the Carnet Jove Jury, promoted by the Agència Catalana de la Joventut (Catalan Youth Agency), which, this year, is celebrating its fifth edition. The mission of the 5th Carnet Jove Jury is to hand out two different awards: the Carnet Jove Jury Award for Best Motion Picture in the Fantàstic Selection and the Carnet Jove Jury Award for Best Motion Picture in the Midnight X-Treme Category. Our commitment to youth is also clear through the Festival ticket discounts available to Carnet Jove card holders.

will be including two film series by essential directors in Spanish fantasy, José Ramón Larraz and Juan Piquer Simón, who will be joining the list of tributes offered by the Festival. In addition,  it will be devoting two specials to Bollywood -one to its most bizarre cinema and the other to its most erotic- plus a section dedicated to Asian Trash, with the best of the worst in Asian cinema. In parallel to the Festival’s tribute to Alien, Brigadoon will be screening unreleased movies that are inspired by this film within the space After Alien. The Brigadoon NOSFERATU Life Achievement Award will be given to Jack Taylor.

SITGES 09 will be paying special attention to the zombie genre, holding a new edition of the Zombie Walk on Saturday, October 10th, and with a tribute to Zombie 2, by Lucio Fulci, that premiered in Sitges 30 years ago.

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