6 months ago

29th AIFF: CLOSING CEREMONY & AWARDS

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Without cinema, there is no culture. Without culture, there is no city.

In a festive atmosphere, took place the closing and awards ceremony of the 29th Athens International Film Festival “Nyxtes Premieras”, sponsored by Nova, on Saturday, October 7, at the packed TRIANTI Hall of the Athens Concert Hall, with the presence of the President of the Athens Film Society, Maria Bobola. The 29th edition was held with a large attendance of the public in the city’s theaters.

Alexandros Perros welcomed the audience of the festival and thanked the Athens Concert Hall for its hospitality, while he also referred to the rare privilege to screen in a national premiere one of the most anticipated films of the year, “BOY AND HERON” by Hayao Miyazaki at the same time as the other major festivals in the world at the moment. He went on to say with joy that the participation of the audience in this year’s festival was impressive, summarizing the screenings of the 29th Nyxtes Premieras in two words: sold out! At a time when the cinemas of the center of Athens are disappearing one after another, the citizens of the capital rushed to show us how much they need these cinemas.

At a time when IDEAL is preparing to close its doors after 102 years of operation, Nyxtes Premieras supported it with the attendance of thousands of spectators and with a series of events in its honor. Alexandros Perros went on to express how important this attendance of our spectators was, which “gave life to the city center, proving how necessary it is at this time to protect our cultural heritage and our cinemas.”

The award ceremony of the International Fiction Competition followed. In the International Competition Section, the awards were presented by the present members of the Jury, President Guy Lodz, film critic, Poca-Yo, visual artist and curator, Christelle Younes, co-founder of Bee On Set Productions and Siamak Etemanti, director and producer, with Molly Manning Walker’s film HOW TO HAVE SEX winning the Golden Athena. The PEKK Award was presented by the member of the Association, Christos Skyllakos for the film RICHELIEU by Pierre-Philippe Sevigny which also won the Fischer Audience Award, which was awarded by Brand Manager Fischer & International Premium Brands, Andriani Alexopoulou.

The Artistic Director of the Athens International Film Festival, Loukas Katsikas, closed the Ceremony with his speech, thanking colleagues and viewers and expressing gratitude that the large audience of the Nyxtes Premieras responded to the call of their favorite Festival and filled the theaters. As he said, “we are preparing to celebrate its 30 years soon”, and expressed his desire “that this can happen in the ATTIKON, APOLLON, OPERA and IDEAL halls”, convinced that the message of the need to preserve, especially, the historic halls was resounding, and was given with the impressive attendance at the 29th Athens International Film Festival. He concluded his speech by asking us to put our anxieties and problems in the perspective of issues that concern current affairs and the world and wished us to move forward with kindness and love.

The glamorous evening ended with the screening of the film “THE BOY AND THE HERON” by Hayao Miyazaki and was followed by a closing party at ROMANCHO accompanied by delicious Jameson drinks.