Espoo Ciné International Film Festival strengthens its role as a significant presenter of European films

29th Espoo Ciné International Film Festival opened the festival summer with ten sunny days of new European cinema. The festival ends on Sunday May 13th with the screening of Swedish director Björn Runge’s first English speaking film THE WIFE.

Espoo Ciné and children’s and youth’s film festival Junior Ciné screened 87 feature films in 204 screenings. Thanks to the Ciné kylässä event the total amount of short films rose to 57. The Festival screened films from 28 different European countries. In addition to film screenings the festival also arranged discussions, seminars and workshops.

Wes Anderson’s Berlin awarded ISLE OF DOGS opened the festival on Friday the 4th. ISLE OF DOGS was also the most popular of all screenings at the festival. Other festival favourites included the Islandic comedy UNDER THE TREE  and the German comedy IN TIMES OF FADING LIGHT. Pre premieres included MEMORY OF INGMAR BERGMAN, WHAT WILL PEOPLE SAY, THE PLACE, RADIANCE and THE WIFE, all of which gathered a pleased audience.

Espoo Ciné keeps strengthening its role as a significant platform for European cinema. – We’ve recieved so much happy feedback about our versatile, high quality programme, says Festival Director Mia Vainikainen. – This year’s programme included several films made by women and about women. In addition to this the programme included stories about everything from love to social and political themes, Vainikainen continues. – Our warmest thanks go to our partners, embassies, production companies and distributors, city of Espoo, to our lovely audience and the irreplaceable volunteers, Vainikainen concludes.

The second Ciné kylässä event presented 31 short films in eleven screenings held in private homes around Espoo. – Our concept has been very well welcomed, Producer Johanna Vanttaja says. – We were offered more homes than we were able to include to our screenings, she continues and predicts a bright future to the event.

Junior Ciné arranged its own opening party in Kino Tapiola. The opening film was German Finnish film MATTI AND SAMI AND THE THREE BIGGEST MISTAKES IN THE UNIVERSE. Film’s German director Stefan Westerwelle and Finnish actors Tommi Korpela and Eero Milonoff attended the screening. Also the media education seminar gathered film makers to discuss films and the stories they tell. Junior Ciné had the pleasure to welcome two guest classes from Espoo schools. Students from the age 10 to 12 presented film screenings, interviewed film maker guests and updated Junior Ciné Instagram. – Children brought smiles and joy to our mornings in Junior Ciné, Production cordinator Maria Lehtonen says.

Espoo Ciné team thanks everyone involved and welcomes you back again in May 2019 to the 30th edition of Espoo Ciné International Film Festival!