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FCG International Scenic Arts Award 2005: VALLADOLID FILM FESTIVAL, 50 YEARS

“For the 50 years of existence of the Valladolid International Film Festival, during which it has constantly offered new values to world cinema as well as supporting author-written films along with its dedication to cultural diversity that has been present in all its editions and is a characteristic spirit of this Festival.

Along the same lines, the Jury would also like to highlight the efforts made by the Festival (SEMINCI) to bring to light knowledge of other cultures and cinematographic models and, thanks to its support, these cultures and models have received international projection.

Finally, the Jury would also like to underline the outstanding support and enthusiasm given by the city of Valladolid to its Film Festival.”. According to the jury that met in Valladolid on June 17, 2005, chaired by Ms. Mercedes Guillamón Duch, Manager of Teatro Calderón; and made up by the following members; Mr. Rafael Daniel Pérez, Representative of ABC Newspaper in Castilla León; Mr. Emilio de Miguel Martínez, member of the Board of  Directors of Caja Duero; Mr. Daniel Pérez Fernández, Playwright and Manager of Teatro Principal, Zamora (Spain); Mr. José Antonio Rapallo Domenge, Head of Televisión Española Media Services in Castilla y León.



 The Valladolid International Film Festival is one of the oldest and consolidated festivals of those held in Europe, as shown by the fact that it celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.

Known popularly as SEMINCI, the Festival started out in 1956.  It has evolved over time, opening up to the demands of each period and has been characterized since the outset for introducing new authors and unknown or little known cinema to Spain and for facilitating access to new fields of cinematographic expression.

With a sincere cultural concern for films and directors, more than for the business aspects of the cinema industry, the Festival has built its own identity which is attractive to professionals as well as to the means of communication.  Both from the point of view of international cinema as well as Spanish cinema and that made in Castilla Leon, its contribution can be said to be decisive.

Andzrej Wajda, Yilmaz Güney, Manoel de Oliveira, Nikita Mihalkov, Stanley Donen, Arthur Penn, Ken Loach, Abbas Kiarostami, Krzysztof Kieslovski, Gianni Amelio, Atom Egoyan, André Téchiné, Mike Leigh, Robert Guédiguian, Costa-Gavras, Theo Angelopoulos, Jonathan Demme, Amos Gitai and many other great cinema professionals have come by Valladolid over the years, along with almost all Spanish producers, who later became or had already been well-known, including Pero Almodóvar among them.  Others could not attend personally but their works received recognition which later allowed an expansion through our country or its immediate revaluation, as was the case with Carl Th. Dreyer, Ingmar Bergman, Luchino Visconti, Jean Renoir, Kenji Mizoguchi, François Truffaut, Louis Malle or Wong Kar-wai.

The Festival has also counted on the presence of well-known international actors such as Brad Pitt, Julie Christie, Emmanuelle Béart, Kenneth Branagh, Liv Ullmann, Mira Sorvino, Mickey Rourke or Susannah York. And, of course, Spanish actors and actresses with international prestige have also attended, names such as Antonio Banderas, Victoria Abril, Carmen Maura...

The program of the Valladolid International Film Festival is open to all kinds of film expression (feature films, short films, fiction, documentaries, Cinema Schools...)  and it is distributed in the following sections:

- Oficial Section, which offers a panorama vision of current world cinema.

- Meeting Point’ section, a parallel sample that gathers together fiction films and other films which are outstanding due to their thematic or stylistic value.

- Time of History’ section –which has existed for over to decades– made up of documentaries on historical moments or processes of which cinema has been a privileged witness.

- Spanish Cinema, which includes a wide range of the most significant films produced by Spanish cinema during the most recent season.  This section is aimed mainly at journalists and foreign professionals who are accredited at the Festival.

- Cycles, dedicated to the presentation and study of producers, directors, styles, schools, national cinemas from other countries, etc.

Broadening on its cinematographic aspect, the Festival also offers the possibility of contemplating –in a simultaneous manner- exhibitions connected to the main characters and their cycles.  These exhitions are mainly photographic, such as those dedicated to the great operator Gabriel Figueroa, Jean-Claude Labrecque, Piotr Jaxa –collaborator of Kieslowski-, Abbas Kiarostami, the shooting of «The Misfits» (by the Agency Magnum Photos) or to the subrealistic author René Magritte and his contemporaries. There are also picture exhibitions, Duch as those on the Japanese producer Takeshi Kitano or the great artistic director, Alexander Trauner, as well as cinema collaborators such as John Huston or Billy Wilder, among others.

The publications edited by the Festival also deserve a special mention.  These publications, together with the general Catalogue, centre their attention on the main figures and cinema of each edition of teh contest.  Valladolid is, perhaps, the Festival which publishes most books every year.

The Festival also organises parallel activities, Duch as the Gathering of New Authors (which celebrates its 7th Gathering this year) and the holding of Cinema Cycles during the first semester of each year and in which many people and means of communication participate.

In the section of awards, the Golden Spike is the main prize that is awarded by an International Jury composed of seven professionals.  This is awarded to both the best Feature film and the best short film.  There are also other awards:  Silver Spikes for the best feature film and short film, Special Jury Awards in both categories, The ‘Pilar Miró’ Award for the Best New Director, Best Actress and Best Actor Award, Best Photographic Director Award, UIP Award to the Best European Short Film and the Awards to the Best Documentaries in the ‘Time of History’ section (with a different Jury made up of three specialists) and the Best Feature Film and the Best Short Film of ‘Meeting Point’, decided on by votes from the audience.

On the occasion of the celebration of its 50th anniversary, the Valladolid International Film Festival wishes to add the folloing awards to its normal ones:

Oficial Section:

* 50th ANNIVERSARY AWARD, with a prize €50,000.00, which will be shared by the producer and director of the winning feature film.

* 50th ANNIVERSARY AWARD, with a prize €12,000.00, which will be shared by the producer and director of the winning short film.

‘Meeting Point’ Section:

Similarly, the ‘NIGHT OF THE SPANISH SHORT FILM’ will offer a specific prize of €3,000.00 for the producer of te winning film and the award will be given by audience vote.

The Valladolid International Film Festival belongs to the European Cinema Festival Coordinator, of which it is a founding member and it is supported by the Valadolid City Council, the Junta de Castilla Leon [Castilla Leon Regional Government], the Diputación de Valladolid [Valladolid Provincial Authority] and the Spanish Minstry of Culture, as well as from the Media Programme of the EuropeanCommission.