The International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) has confirmed that it is moving ahead with plans to hold a live event for its 51st in January, despite concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.
On Tuesday, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte announced new restrictions aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19 amid concerns that a new omicron variant of the virus could cause infection rates to soar. . The new measures include extending a curfew from 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. for restaurants, bars, non-essential shops and other public places, and closing schools in Hanoi. Lan a week early for Christmas. While COVID-19 infection rates in the country have fallen from previous records, they remain relatively high, around 85 per 100,000 population.
But the IFFR on Wednesday said the latest government regulations, including social mandates and an evening curfew for cinemas, would still allow a live festival, which will begins on January 26 and runs until February 6.
Last week, Rotterdam moved its 2022 industry events – including the CineMart marketplace and Rotterdam Laboratories – online amid COVID-19 concerns. This change is also pragmatic as very few international industry attendees from outside Europe are likely to attend in person.
However, local audiences will be able to enjoy the 2022 festival in person, along with press and industry guests.
Festival director Vanja Kaludjercic said: “Thanks to the commitment of the team and the support of our partners, we have adjusted the festival once again to accommodate the restrictions in the Netherlands. “We are pleased to confirm that the festival will be a reality, allowing us to give the stage to all the outstanding filmmakers who have trusted us to show their work.”
Along the way, the latest drama by Dutch director Mijke de Jong (Layla M., Bluebird), will open IFFR 2022.
The Rotterdam-born filmmaker has been a regular at the festival since showing her debut film, Square’s Delight, in Rotterdam in 1990. De Jong’s latest film tells the story of twin Afghan teenagers, Nahid and Malihe, whom the filmmaker met during her volunteer work at a refugee camp disaster in Greece.