This Friday: 19th Art Film Fest begins, featuring world-class films and stars

Attention cinema fans: the 19th annual Art Film Fest begins on Friday, June 17, featuring the latest and most acclaimed pictures from renowned festivals like Cannes, Berlin and Venice, Slovak new releases, Asian cinematic delicacies and cult figures of the film world. Trenčianske Teplice and Trenčín’s movie marathon will last until June 25, bringing viewers 194 films from fifty-three different countries, including 110 feature-length films, three medium-length pictures and eighty-one shorts.

For the first time in its history, Art Film Fest will be opened by a Slovak film: young director Zuzana Liová’s "The House" (Dom), screened to great acclaim at the Berlinale. Another festival first will be Art Film Fest’s closing film, the exclusive Slovak premiere of former president Václav Havel’s directorial debut: "Leaving" (Odcházení), starring Josef Abrhám and Dagmar Havlová.   

Art Film Fest’s visitors can look forward to appearances by cinematic luminaries from Slovakia and abroad. At the opening ceremony on Friday, June 17th, world-renowned Serbian director Emir Kusturica will accept the Golden Camera Award. At 4 pm on Saturday, June 18 at Trenčianske Teplice’s Tatrabanka Cinema, Mr Kusturica will personally introduce one of his best-known films and winner of Cannes’ Best Director award – 1989’s "Time of the Gypsies" (Dom za vešanje), a look into the lives of Yugoslavian Roma.

Saturday, June 18 will be dedicated to distinguished Hungarian actor János Bán, who will accept Art Film Fest’s Actor’s Mission Award. Best known for his role in the cult classic "My Sweet Little Village" (Vesničko má středisková), the performer will fix a plaque bearing his name in Trenčianske Teplice’s Festival Park at 3 pm. At 8 pm on Friday, June 17, Trenčianske Teplice’s Prameň Jojcinema will screen "My Sweet Little Village" in Mr Bán’s honour, and at 7 pm on Saturday, June 18 at the Spa Hall, the actor will personally introduce the 1995 Slovak film "Albert, Albert", the life story of doctor Albert Škarvan, friend of Russian author Leo Nikolayevich Tolstoy.

On Sunday, June 19, this year’s second Actor’s Mission Award will be presented to Czech actor Zdeněk Svěrák, co-creator of the mythical Czech "hero" Jára Cimrman. At 2:30 pm, the actor will fix his plaque in the Festival Park, and at 4 pm at the Tatrabanka Cinema he will personally introduce his legendary film "The Elementary School" (Obecná škola), featuring his zestful lead performance inspired by his own childhood and teaching career. In 1991 the picture was nominated for an Oscar as Best Foreign Film.

The festival’s final Saturday on June 25 will also feature awards ceremonies. This year’s last Actor’s Mission Award will be granted to Slovak cinematic diva Zuzana Kronerová. At 10 am in Prameň Jojcinema, the actress will personally introduce Czech director Bohdan Sláma’s "Wild Bees" (Divoké včely), where her portrayal of Lišajová earned her a Czech Lion in 2001.

At the festival’s June 25 closing ceremony, renowned Slovak costume designer Milan Čorba and Oscar-winning French master screenwriter Jean-Claude Carrière will each receive a Golden Camera Award

At 12:30 pm on Saturday, June 25, Prameň Jojcinema will host Milan Čorba’s personal introduction of the 1981 film "Night Riders" (Noční jazdci), starring Michal Dočolomanský and featuring Mr Čorba’s brilliant costumes.

Also at Prameň Jojcinema, at 12:30 pm on Friday, June 24, Jean-Claude Carrière will personally introduce short films from early in his career. Art Film Fest will honour the scriptwriter with screenings of the cult classic "Beauty of the Day" (Belle de jour) from world-renowned director Luis Buňuel, and Czech director Miloš Forman’s "Taking Off", both written by Mr Carrière.

The cinematic programme at this year’s Art Film Fest will be divided into seventeen sections, including tributes to our award winners. In the International Competition of Feature Films, fifteen pictures will vie for the Blue Angel, including the festival’s opening Slovak film and three new releases fresh from Cannes. The winners will be selected by a five-member international jury, helmed by legendary Slovak director Juraj Jakubisko.

Art Film Fest has also managed to acquire an unprecedented number of the latest and greatest from the prestigious Cannes International Film Festival, a total of nine films, including Palme d’Or winner "The Tree of Life" starring Brad Pitt and Sean Penn, and "Melancholia", whose lead performance by Kirsten Dunst earned her the Palme d’Or for best actress.

Even more fascinating titles will be featured in sections such as Love and Anarchy, Eastern Promises, Dangerous Kids, Focus: Quebec Screen and Late Night Show.

The Slovak Season section will present seven feature- and medium-length films, including two premieres, and Slovak Season Special will screen thirty-three shorts representing three Slovak film schools.

This year’s Art Film Fest has much to offer music fans as well. On Sunday of the festival’s first weekend (June 19), Trenčín’s main square will get down and boogie with "Disco King" Michal David, while Trenčianske Teplice’s Festival Café will feature nightly concerts moderated by versatile musician Oskar Rózsa.

Festival screenings will be held in Trenčianske Teplice at the Tatra Banka Cinema Tent, the Prameň Jojcinema and the Spa Hall, as well as in Trenčín’s two Cinemax auditoriums and STV Artkino Metro.
Art Film Fest 2011 – the 19th Trenčianske Teplice/Trenčín International Film Festival is made possible by the financial support of the Audiovisual Fund.

Organizers: ART FILM, n.o., FORZA, a.s. 

Co-organizers: The Town of Trenčianske Teplice, Trenčianske Teplice Health Spa

General Sponsors: Omnia Holding SE, AquaCity Poprad

Main Sponsors: Tatra banka, Slovnaft, VUJE, OHL ŽS

Official Transport Provider: Lancia

Logistics Sponsor: DHL

Free student cinepasses provided by: Prvá stavebná sporiteľňa (First Housing-Construction Savings Bank)

Sponsors: TIPOS, Ernst & Young, AVI studio, Penzión Baske, Cinemax, Santovka

Official Suppliers:
Pilsner Urquell, HUBERT J.E., the festival Pax Spa Hotel,
A Briliant, Philips, Esterle&Esterle, MF team, LampART, Lenovo, Stredná odborná škola polygrafická (Vocational School of Printing)

Main Media Sponsors: Slovenská televízia, televízia JOJ, Rádio FM, Pravda,

Media Sponsors: Central Europe Television, Kino CS, Muzika CS, Doku CS, Rádio Europa 2, Rádio Hit FM, .týždeň, Eurotelevízia, Pardon, OK!, Kinečko, Kam do mesta, Focus, Boomerang Media, SITA,, BlueSky, Televízia Trenčianske Teplice, Film New Europe, euroAWK, Willmark

Partners: The City of Trenčín, the Trenčín Self-governing Region, the Embassy of Israel in Slovakia, the European Commission Representation in Slovakia, the Embassy of the USA in Bratislava, the Office of the Embassy of Sweden in Bratislava, Sodec Quebec, the Slovak Film Institute, Cinecitta, the Italian Cultural Institute in Bratislava, Omnia, RONA, Celtima SK,, Hotel Flóra, versity