Pictured at top: (L to R) Roberto Cicutto (President, Luce Cinecittà); Gianfranco Rosi (Director, FIRE AT SEA); Jacqueline Lyanga (Director, AFI FEST); Alberto Barbera (Director, Venice Film Festival)
This year, AFI FEST showcased movies from 46 countries around the world, and many cultural supporters came to the festival to celebrate the filmmakers and their films. These guests included consul generals, cultural agency representatives and filmmakers representing 17 countries, proving that the love of world cinema can speak one language. Organizations and consulates from Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iran, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, South Korea, Switzerland and Turkey all contributed to the success of AFI FEST.
AFI FEST celebrated more than 25 Francophone films and co-productions with our Francophone Reception. Partners included the Consulate General of Belgium in Los Angeles, ELMA (European Languages Movies America), the Consulate General of France in Los Angeles, Lacoste, Québec Government Office in Los Angeles, Consulate of Switzerland in Los Angeles, Telefilm Canada, TV5MONDE, UniFrance and Wallonie Bruxelles Images.
AFI FEST hosted a Tribute to Isabelle Huppert for her decades of work, accompanied by a conversation with the world-class actress and a showing of her film ELLE. The conversation discussed Huppert’s career and approach.
The Filmmaker Brunch, hosted by Christophe Lemoine, Consul General of France in Los Angeles, took place at the Résidence de France. This celebratory event was attended by Isabelle Huppert, several AFI FEST 2016 filmmakers, multiple cultural supporters, diplomats, industry representatives and press.
The festival welcomed Japan House Los Angeles, Japan Foundation Los Angeles and the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles in their support of the films HARMONIUM, MIFUNE: THE LAST SAMURAI and THE RED TURTLE. MIFUNE: THE LAST SAMURAI honors legendary Japanese actor Toshiro Mifune, who also posthumously received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
AFI FEST hosted a Screen Education program, where over 500 students from 12 schools attended a Special Screening of Disney’s MOANA. Jared Bush, the screenwriter of MOANA and Leo Matsuda, the director of INNER WORKINGS, engaged with the students in a visual presentation and Q&A. This experience was supported by the Latino Film Institute Youth Cinema Project, The Brotman Foundation of California and the Department of Cultural Affairs.
This year, the festival also celebrated new Iranian cinema in conjunction with the Farhang Foundation, with a reception following A DRAGON ARRIVES!, directed by Mani Haghighi. Dignitaries and filmmakers alike attended the private event to honor this world cinema artistry.
AFI FEST partnered with Luce Cinecittà, ITA (Italian Trade Agency), the Italian Consulate in Los Angeles and IIC (Istituto Italiano di Cultura Los Angeles) in presenting the World Cinema Masters in Conversation event at the Egyptian Theatre on the last night of the festival with Gianfranco Rosi, director of Italy’s official Academy Award® entry for Best Foreign Language Film, FIRE AT SEA. As part of the inaugural World Cinema Masters in Conversation section at AFI FEST, renowned documentarian Rosi sat with Alberto Barbera, Director of the Venice Film Festival, for an in-depth conversation about one of the year’s most lauded documentaries.
The partners also joined in the curation of a selection of Italian films playing at the festival, including the World Premiere screening of the 4k restoration of IL SORPASSO (DIR Dino Risi) in the Cinema’s Legacy section. The restoration work was supported by Luce Cinecittà, Cineteca di Bologna, Surf Film and Janus Films, the U.S. rights-holder. Additionally, FRANCA: CHAOS AND CREATION, an incisive documentary by director Francesco Carrozzini in which he creates an intimate portrait of his mother — Franca Sozzani, the legendary editor-in-chief of Italian Vogue — screened at AFI FEST.
See more photos below.