2006-11-09 17:42:49
Film Festival Hopes To Build Excitement
Excitement continues to mount as the Bahamas' very own film festival gets ready to kick off its third annual celebration of films, events and panels on December 7.

Thanks to founding sponsors Atlantis Paradise Island Resort and the Ministry of Tourism, organisers of the Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF) say the 2006 event will surpass the outstanding success of the two previous years.

From December 7 to 10, audiences will enjoy festival programmes and events at such venues as the Atlantis Theatre, screenings at Galleria JFK in Nassau, and gala parties.

The box office for the screenings opened yesterday and organisers say the festival is accessible to all - visitors and Bahamians alike.

As previously announced, Oscar winner and Bahamian resident Nicolas Cage will be the recipient of the Career Achievement Award at this year's festival.

The BIFF Chopard Award will be presented to Mr Cage at a gala event at the Atlantis Theatre.

Over the four day festival, BIFF will screen a selection of Nicolas Cage's films including: Face/Off, Adaptation and Wild at Heart. There will also be a conversation with the actor, moderated by a well known personality. Mr Cage will attend the screenings at both the Atlantis and Galleria on JFK for question and answer sessions.

The be organisers of the festival say they are committed to exhibiting films that showcase unique international themes as well as combining both enjoyment and thought provoking concepts via the cinematic arts.

Leslie Vanderpool, the founder and executive director of BIFF, screened hundreds of films from all over the world and is putting together a slate of 50 narrative, documentary and short films for this year's festival.

"The high caliber of representation of films in this year's festival will be incredible," says Ms Vanderpool. "There are significant messages from many countries with a special concentration in the Caribbean. It will affect the Bahamas multi-cultural community in a powerful way.

"While we are an 'international festival,' with guests coming from around the world, we are even more a festival for the people of Nassau and the Bahamas who we hope will catch film, and panels that they normally wouldn't be able to see," she said.

The festival has three juried competition caregories: the "Spirit of Freedom" (both narrative and documentary sections) presented by Chopard and the "New Visions" award, going to the filmmaker in the narrative section presented by Hard Rock Cafe.

Other film programmes include "Panorama World Cinema," "Special Screenings," "Family Films, "Caribbean Spotlight" and a new sidebar added this year, "East Meets West," which will present films from Eastern Europe India. East Asia and the Pacific Islands.

"From Thursday, December 7, when the festival presents its opening night gala film, director Susanne Bier's After the Wedding, through our exciting Career Achievement Award event and on to our closing night film, the Bahamas International Film Festival will be a very special and exciting place to be." the organisers said.

View a list of films to be screened at this year's Bahamas International Film Festival.
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