Locarno Film Festival
August 4th | 14th
Thousands of film fans and industry professionals meet here every summer to share their thirst for new discoveries and a passion for cinema in all its diversity. In Locarno they find a quality program, rich, eclectic, surprising, and where emerging talent rubs shoulders with prestigious guests.
The audience is the soul of the Festival, as exemplified in the famous evenings on the Piazza Grande, whose magical setting can accommodate up to 8,000 filmgoers every night.
With 11 sections, 3 competitions and 20 awards, quality and variety are key. This is the framework of a Festival that explores cinema from every perspective, to discover in the present the filmmakers and films destined to have a future.
Competitive Film Sections
Reflecting the Festival’s aim to cross and blur boundaries, the Concorso internazionale presents a stimulating panorama of contemporary auteur cinema, where young talent rubs shoulders with that of established directors. A jury of major figures in cinema is charged with choosing one of the competing fiction or documentary features from all over the world, screened as world or international premieres, to win the prestigious Pardo d’oro.
Concorso Cineasti del presente
An ideal arena for discovery, the Concorso Cineasti del presente is dedicated to emerging directors from all over the world and devoted to first and second features. Around fifteen feature films screening as world or international premieres, from documentary to fiction, compete for the Pardo d’oro Cineasti del presente.
Pardi di domani
A platform for new talent, the Pardi di domani section screens short and medium-length films from all over the world, split into three competitions: two are devoted to filmmakers who have never made a feature, one to international directors exploring new storytelling modes.
8,000 viewers a night, the Piazza Grande is both the Festival’s heart and its showcase. With its giant screen, one of the biggest in Europe, endowed with truly exceptional projection quality, the Piazza Grande is one of the finest open-air venues in the world. This magnificent and unique setting is where every night all the many and diverse festival audiences come together for a big cinematic event.
The Fuori concorso selection offers recent work – feature films and shorts, film essays, documentaries – by well-established filmmakers, out of competition, presented mostly as world or international premiere.
La selezione Fuori concorso propone opere recenti (cortometraggi, film saggi, lungometraggi di finzione o documentari) firmate da registi di rilievo e quasi tutte presentate in prima mondiale o internazionale.
Open Doors Screenings
From 2019 to 2021, the Open Doors Screenings section explores the diverse filmmaking of South East Asia and Mongolia. In 2021, it presents a curated selection of feature and short films from Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Mongolia.
Histoire(s) du cinéma
Locarno Kids Screenings
Semaine de la critique
Pardo d’onore Manor, Excellence Award, Premio Raimondo Rezzonico, Vision Award Ticinomoda, Leopard Club Award, Prix du Public UBS, Premio Cinema Ticino, Pardo alla carriera… These are the Festival’s special awards that every year celebrate the personalities who are writing the history of cinema, electing them as symbols of dialogue between the films of yesterday and the films of today.
75 years of history, 73 editions to celebrate cinema… first with the Vela d’oro, then with the iconic golden leopard, the Pardo d’oro. In his emblem, Locarno has in a symbolic animal, which is kind of a lion, a mythological “pardo” which remembers a bit Dante’s lynx. 72 years ago, there has been a dispute about the animal’s entity; as a matter of fact, it is not clear whether it is an actual lion or a leopard. Locarno draws its aesthetic from this ambiguity of symbols, which was turned it into a real brand by Remo Rossi, the first creator of the “Pardo d’oro”, our main award. Also, considering that Venice already had the Golden Lion as an icon, Locarno clearly had to choose the Leopard.
Locarno Pro is the landmark for film industry professionals attending Locarno Film Festival.
Locarno Pro plays an active, 360° role in the support of auteur cinema: whether launching a new project or extending and optimizing existing services and initiatives, the goal is always to support sales agents, distributors, exhibitors, producers and filmmakers in their respective tasks, ranging from the conception to the release of independent arthouse films in different areas of the world.
In a year when it isn’t possible for the Festival to be the international film industry’s summer focal point, Locarno Pro will nevertheless be a virtual territory of meetings, exchanges and growth for auteur film professionals. From August 5 to 11, Locarno Pro will propose initiatives and events that will accompany the industry in examining an undoubtedly difficult year, while seeking to develop ideas and proposals with an eye to the future, thus contributing to the overarching mission of Locarno 2020 – For the Future of Films.
Our usual initiatives First Look, Match Me!, Alliance 4 Development, U30 and the Industry Academy did not take place in 2020. We hope they’ll be back in their traditional form in 2021.
Markus Duffner head of Locarno Pro
The Locarno Film Festival is pleased to announce the appointment of Markus Duffner as Head of Locarno Pro, with effect from 1st January 2021. He will be joined in the team by Sophie Bourdon, as Deputy Head of Locarno Pro and Head of Open Doors, and by Nadia Dresti, who will continue to lend her expertise to the Festival as International Advisor.