The 19th Marrakech International Film Festival opens in style

The 19th edition of the Marrakech International Film Festival (FIFM), a flagship event, placed under the High Patronage of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, opened on Friday evening at the Palais des Congrès in the Ocher City, in the presence of an assembly of stars of the national and international 7th Art and eminent figures and personalities from the worlds of culture, media and the arts.

In a festive and warm atmosphere, the cinema thus regains its rights in this thousand-year-old city, with a grandiose ceremony marking the reunion of fans of the giant screen with this unmissable event, which has carved out a place of choice among the high quality international cinematographic events and this, after a two-year hiatus, Covid-19 obliges.

This ceremony took off with the traditional parade of film icons present, who walked the Red Carpet to the cheers of a loyal and thirsty public, who came to meet and discover their favorite stars.

Festival-goers also gave a warm welcome to the big names in Moroccan cinema as soon as several national celebrities appeared on the “Red Carpet”.

The public also welcomed the President of the Official Competition Jury for this new edition, the great Italian director Paolo Sorrentino, as well as the members of the Jury, namely the British actress Vanessa Kirby, the German actress Diane Kruger, Australian director Justin Kurzel, Lebanese director and actress Nadine Labaki, Moroccan director Laïla Marrakchi and French actor Tahar Rahim.

The evening continued inside the sumptuous Palais des Congrès with a posthumous tribute to leading figures of the national artistic and cinematographic scene, who have died during the last three years.

Then, a thunder of applause resounded with the rise on stage of the president and the members of the Jury of the official competition of this edition which continues until November 19.

Speaking on this occasion, Mr. Sorrentino expressed his heartfelt thanks to His Majesty King Mohammed VI and to HRH Prince Moulay Rachid, President of the Marrakech International Film Festival Foundation, for organizing this meeting. you cinematic that is no longer to be presented.

He was delighted with the warm welcome given to him in the company of the members of the Jury, while expressing his immense joy at taking part in this flagship event in Marrakech, this “magical place”, emphasizing that this new edition offers the opportunity to discuss and discover the novelties of the 7th art throughout the world.

The highlight of this ceremony was the strong tribute paid to the Indian actor Ranveer Singh who received, on this occasion, the Golden Star of the Festival from the hands of the advisor to the President of the Foundation of the International Festival of Film from Marrakech, Ms. Mélita Toscan Du Plantier.

Ranveer Singh, one of the four emblematic figures of the 7th art from different Continents to whom this edition will pay tribute in recognition of their brilliant careers, has experienced, in the space of a decade, a lightning ascent and has established itself as the one of Bollywood’s most talented actors, going beyond the borders of his country.

In addition to Ranveer Singh, the Festival, true to its tradition, will also pay tribute to Scottish actress Tilda Swinton, American filmmaker James Gray and Moroccan director Farida Benlyazid, who will also receive the Festival’s Gold Star.

Subsequently, Mr. Sorrentino and the members of the Jury had the honor of officially declaring this 19th edition of the Festival open.

The highlight of this sumptuous opening ceremony was the screening of the film “GUILLERMO DEL TORO’S PINOCCHIO”, the new work of the Mexican directors Guillermo Del Toro, who had won the Oscar, and American Mark Gustafson.

The film reimagines the classic story of a wooden puppet brought to life in this stunning stop-motion musical tale.

Remember that fourteen feature films are in the running to win the “Golden Star” in the official competition of the Marrakech International Film Festival.

These are the film “LE BLEU DU CAFTAN” by Moroccan director Maryam Touzani, “ALMA VIVA” by Cristèle Alves Meira (Portugal), “ASHKAL” by Youssef Chebbi (Tunisia), “ASTRAKAN” by David Depesseville (France) , “AUTOBIOGRAPHY” by Makbul Mubarak (Indonesia), FARAWAY SONG (Cañçao ao Longe) by Clarissa Campolina (Brazil) and “PETROL” by Alena Lodkina (Australia).

Also in the running are “RED SHOES” (Zapatos rojos) by Carlos Kaiser Eichelmann (Mexico), “RICEBOY SLEEPS” by Anthony Shim (Canada), “SAVAGE” (Amina) by Ahmed Abdullahi (Sweden), “SNOW AND THE BEAR (Kar ve Ayı) by Selcen Ergun (Turkey), “DARK CHEVALIER” (A Tale of Shemroon) by Emad Aleebrahim Dehkordi (Iran), “THE TASTE OF APPLES IS RED” (Ta’am al-tufah, ahmar) by Ehab Tarabieh (Syria) and “FOUDRE” (Thunder) by Carmen Jaquier (Switzerland).

In addition to the feature films competing in the official competition, 62 other films will be screened as part of the “Gala screenings”, the “Special screenings”, “the 11th Continent”, the “Panorama of Moroccan Cinema”, “Young Audience », the « Outdoor screenings at Jamaa El Fna ».

Some films by international and Moroccan personalities, to whom the festival will pay tribute, will be screened at the Palais des Congrès, at the Colisée cinema and at Jemaa El Fna, thus completing this rich selection of 76 films.

In addition, big names in world cinema will be in free conversation with the public of the ocher city during this edition, as part of the “In Conversation with …” program, one of the most anticipated events of the festival, resulting in intense and exciting exchanges.

The international personalities who will meet festival-goers this year are Bollywood star Ranveer Singh (November 12), brilliant French actress Marina Foïs, French director Léos Carax (November 13), French actress and director Julie Delpy (November 14), French director Julia Ducournau, the second director to receive the Palme d’Or in the history of the Cannes Film Festival, and American director and poet Jim Jarmusch (November 15).

Also in attendance will be Oscar-winning Franco-Lebanese composer Gabriel Yared (November 16), eminent British actor Jeremy Irons, two-time Oscar-winning Iranian director Asghar Farhadi (November 17) and Swedish director Robin Östlund (November 18).

Not deviating from its rule, the International Film Festival of Marrakech has reserved a place of choice for national cinema, with the “Panorama of Moroccan cinema” which will present this year a selection of five films “SUMMER DAYS” (Ayam Seif ) by Faouzi Bensaïdi, “ABDELINHO” by Hicham Ayouch, “POISSONS ROUGES/GOLDFISHES” (Asmak hamrae) by Abdeslam Kelai, “LA CARTE POSTALE/THE POSTCARD” (Fi zaouiyat omi) by Asmae El Moudir and “ZIYARA” by Simone Bitton .

A total of 15 Moroccan films will be shown in the different sections of the Festival.

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The 19th Marrakech International Film Festival opens in style