Seattle International Film Festival

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Seattle International Film Festival

Director Kathryn Bigelow with SIFF Artistic Director Carl Spence - Photo by Matt Daniels
LocationSeattle, Washington, USA
Founded1976
LanguageInternational
www.siff.net
 
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Seattle International Film Festival

Director Kathryn Bigelow with SIFF Artistic Director Carl Spence - Photo by Matt Daniels
LocationSeattle, Washington, USA
Founded1976
LanguageInternational
www.siff.net

The Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF), held annually in Seattle, Washington since 1976, is among the top film festivals in North America. Audiences have grown steadily; the 2006 festival had 160,000 attendees.[1] In recent years, the SIFF has run for more than three weeks (24 days), in May/June, and features a diverse assortment of predominantly independent and foreign films and, in recent years, a strong contingent of documentaries.

SIFF 2006 included 300+ films and was the first SIFF to include a venue in neighboring Bellevue, Washington, after an ill-fated early attempt. However, in 2008, the festival was back to being entirely in Seattle, and had a slight decrease in the number of feature films. The 2010 festival featured over 400 films, shown primarily in downtown Seattle and its nearby neighborhoods, but also in West Seattle, Everett, Kirkland, and Juanita Beach Park.[2]

History[edit]

The festival began in 1976 at a then-independent cinema, the Moore Egyptian Theater, now back under its earlier name as the Moore Theater and functioning as a concert venue. When founders Dan Ireland and Darryl Macdonald of the Moore Egyptian lost their lease, they founded the Egyptian theater in a former Masonic Temple on Seattle's Capitol Hill. The Egyptian theater remains a prime festival venue to this day, although the festival now typically uses about half a dozen cinemas (including, since 2007, its own SIFF Cinema at Seattle Center), with the exact roster varying from year to year.

During the 1980s, SIFF audiences developed a reputation for appreciating films that did not fit standard industry niches, such as Richard Rush's multi-layered The Stunt Man (1980). SIFF was instrumental in the entry of Dutch films into the United States market, including the first major American success for director Paul Verhoeven.[citation needed]

The nature of the festival[edit]

The festival includes a component that is unique among major film festivals: a four-film "Secret Festival". Those who attend the Secret Festival do not know in advance what they will see, and they must sign an oath that they will not reveal afterwards what they have seen.

In general, SIFF has a reputation as an "audience festival" rather than an "industry festival".[3] The festival often partially overlaps the Cannes Film Festival, which can reduce attendance by industry bigwigs; in 2007 there were two days of overlap, May 24 and 25.

The SIFF group also curates the Global Lens film series, the Screenwriters Salon, and Futurewave (K-12 programming and youth outreach), coordinates SIFF-A-Go-Go travel programs (organized tours to other film festivals), and co-curates the 1 Reel Film Feastival at Bumbershoot and the Sci-Fi Shorts Film Festival at the Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame.[1]

In 2006, Longhouse Media launched the SuperFly Filmmaking Experience, in partnership with the Seattle International Film Festival, which brings youth together from diverse backgrounds to work collaboratively on film projects that promote awareness of indigenous issues and mutual understanding of each other's cultures. Fifty youth from across the United States arrive in Seattle to then travel to a local Pacific Northwest reservation to create 4 films in 36 hours.

SIFF Cinema[edit]

November 28, 2006, SIFF and Seattle mayor Greg Nickels announced that SIFF will soon have a home and a year-round screening facility in what has been the Nesholm Family Lecture Hall of McCaw Hall, the same building at Seattle Center that houses the Seattle Opera. The city contributed $150,000 to the $350,000 project. This auditorium was a "flagship venue" for SIFF festivals[1] and the site of most press screenings.

Shortly after the 2011 festival, SIFF moved its operations to the SIFF Film Center on the Seattle Center campus. The Film Center includes a small auditorium and a classroom. In October 2011, SIFF Cinema moved from McCaw Hall to its current location in the Uptown Theater. SIFF utilizes all three of the Uptown's three screens for year round programming. SIFF currently has year round programming for four screens in Seattle.

Awards[edit]

Since 1985, the Seattle International Film Festival has awarded the Golden Space Needle award each year to the festival's most popular movie. Ballots are cast by audience members at the end of each movie. Previous winners of the Golden Space Needle include Whale Rider for 2003, Trainspotting for 1996 and Kiss of the Spider Woman for 1985.

Golden Space Needle (Best Film) and SIFF Awards for Best Short and Documentary[edit]

YearBest Film (Golden Space Needle)Best ShortBest Documentary
1985Kiss of the Spider Woman (dir. Héctor Babenco, Brazil)Frankenweenie (dir. Tim Burton, United States) 
1986The Assault (dir. Fons Rademakers, Netherlands)The Big Snit (dir. Richard Condie, USA)
1987My Life as a Dog (dir. Lasse Hallström, Sweden)Your Face (dir. Bill Plimpton, USA)
1988Bagdad Café (dir. Percy Adlon, West Germany)Ray's Male Heterosexual Dance Hall (dir. Jonathon Sanger, USA)
1989Apartment Zero (dir. Martin Donovan, USA)Tin Toy (dir. John Lasseter, USA)
1990Pump Up the Volume (dir. Allan Moyle, USA)Knick Knack (dir. John Lasseter, USA)
1991My Mother's Castle (dir. Yves Robert, France)The Potato Hunter (dir. Timothy Hittle, USA)Paris Is Burning (dir. Jennie Livingston, USA)
1992Betty Blue (dir. Jean-Jacques Beineix, France)Anima Mundi (dir. Godfrey Reggio, USA)A Brief History of Time (dir. Errol Morris, USA)
1993The Wedding Banquet (dir. Ang Lee, Taiwan/USA)The Fairy Who Didn't Want to Be a Fairy Anymore (dir. Laurie Lynd, Canada)Road Scholar (dir. Roger Weisberg, USA)
1994Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (dir. Stephan Elliott, Australia)The Wrong Trousers (dir. Nick Park, UK)The Wonderful, Horrible Life of Leni Riefenstahl (dir. Ray Müller, Germany)
1995The Kingdom (dir. Lars von Trier, Denmark)Surprise! (dir. Veit Helmer, Germany)Crumb (dir. Terry Zwigoff, USA)
1996Trainspotting (dir. Danny Boyle, UK)That Night (dir. John Keister, USA)Hype! (dir. Doug Pray, USA)
1997Comrades: Almost a Love Story (dir. Peter Chan, Hong Kong)Ballad of the Skeletons (dir. Gus Van Sant, USA)Licensed to Kill (dir. Arthur Dong, USA)
1998God Said Ha! (dir. Julia Sweeney, USA)Sin Sostén (dir. Rene Castinello, Antonio Urrutia, Belgium)Frank Lloyd Wright (dir. Ken Burns, Lynn Novick, USA)
1999Run Lola Run (dir. Tom Tykwer, Germany)12 Stops of the Road to Nowhere (dir. Jay Lowi, USA)Buena Vista Social Club (dir. Wim Wenders, USA)
2000Shower (Zhang Yang, China)In God We Trust (dir. Jason Reitman, USA)Trade Off (dir. Shaya Mercer, USA)
2001Finder's Fee (dir. Jeff Probst, USA)Boychick (dir. Glen Gaylord, USA)The Endurance: Shackleton's Legendary Antarctic Expedition (dir. George Butler, USA)
2002Elling (dir. Petter Næss, Norway)The Host (dir. Nick Tomnay, Australia)Ruthie & Connie: Every Room in the House (dir. Deborah Dickson, USA)
2003Whale Rider (dir. Niki Caro, New Zealand)Misdemeanor (dir. Jonathan Lemond, USA)The Revolution Will Not Be Televised (dir. Kim Bartley, Donnacha O'Briain, Ireland/Venezuela)
2004Facing Windows (dir. Ferzan Özpetek, Italy)Consent (dir. Jason Reitman, USA)Born into Brothels (dir. Zana Briski, Ross Kauffmann, USA)
2005Innocent Voices (dir. Luis Mandoki, Mexico)Raftman's Razor (dir. Keith Bearden, USA)Murderball (dir. Henry-Alex Rubin, Dana Adam Shapiro, USA)
2006OSS 117: Nest of Spies (dir. Michel Hazanavicius, France)Full Disclosure (dir. Douglas Horn, USA)The Trials of Darryl Hunt (dir. Ricki Stern, Annie Sundberg, USA)
2007[4]Outsourced (dir. John Jeffcoat, USA)Pierre (dir. Dan Brown[disambiguation needed], USA)For the Bible Tells Me So (dir. Daniel Karslake, USA)
2008Cherry Blossoms (dir. Doris Dörrie, Germany)Felix (dir. Andreas Utta, Germany)The Wrecking Crew (dir. Denny Tedesco, USA)
2009Black Dynamite (dir. Scott Sanders, USA)Wallace and Gromit: A Matter of Loaf and Death (dir. Nick Park, UK)The Cove (dir. Louie Psihoyos, USA)
2010The Hedgehog (dir. Mona Achache, France)Ormie (dir. Rob Silvestri, Canada)Ginny Ruffner: A Not So Still Life (dir. Karen Stanton, USA), Waste Land (dir. Lucy Walker, United Kingdom)
2011Paper Birds (dir. Emilio Aragón, Spain)The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore (dir. William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg, USA)To Be Heard (dir. Amy Sultan, Roland Legiardi-Laura, Edwin Martinez and Deborah Shaffer, USA)
2012Any Day Now (dir. Travis Fine, USA)CatCam (dir. Seth Keal, USA)The Invisible War (dir. Kirby Dick, USA)

SIFF Awards for Best Director, Actress and Actor[edit]

YearBest DirectorBest ActressBest Actor
1985Krzysztof Zanussi (Power of Evil, Poland)Renee Soutendijk (The Fourth Man, Belgium)William Hurt (Kiss of the Spider Woman, Brazil)
1986Fons Rademakers (The Assault, Netherlands)Cathy Tyson (Mona Lisa, UK)Bob Hoskins (Mona Lisa, UK)
1987Lasse Hallström (My Life as a Dog, Sweden)Monique van de Ven (Iris, Netherlands)Gary Oldman (Prick Up Your Ears, UK)
1988Alan Rudolph (The Moderns, USA)Deborra-Lee Furness (Shame, Australia)Tom Hulce (Dominick and Eugene, USA)
1989Martin Donovan (Apartment Zero, USA)Wendy Hughes (Boundaries of the Heart, Australia)Rutger Hauer (Legend of a Holy Drinker, Italy)
1990Denys Arcand (Jesus of Montreal, Canada)Rebecca Jenkins (Bye Bye Blues, Canada)Michael Rooker (Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, USA)
1991Peter Greenaway (Drowning by Numbers, UK)Lily Tomlin (Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe, USA)Alan Rickman (Close My Eyes / Truly, Madly, Deeply, UK)
1992Jean-Jacques Beineix (Betty Blue, France)Marianne Sägebrecht (Martha and I, Germany/France)Dermot Mulroney (Where the Day Takes You, USA)
1993Ang Lee (The Wedding Banquet, Taiwan/USA)Tilda Swinton (Orlando, UK/Russia/Italy/France/Netherlands)Russell Crowe (Romper Stomper / Hammers Over the Anvil, Australia)
1994Rolf de Heer (Bad Boy Bubby, Australia)Mimi Rogers (Reflection on a Crime, USA)Terence Stamp (Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Australia)
1995Bryan Singer (The Usual Suspects, USA)Nicole Kidman (To Die For, USA)Kevin Spacey (The Usual Suspects, USA)
1996Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, UK)Lili Taylor (Girls Town, USA)Vincent D'Onofrio (The Whole Wide World, USA)
1997Peter Greenaway (The Pillow Book, UK)Robin Wright Penn (Loved, USA)Brendan Fraser (Still Breathing, USA)
1998Bill Condon (Gods and Monsters, USA)Christina Ricci (Buffalo 66 / The Opposite of Sex, USA)Stephen Fry (Wilde, UK)
1999John Sayles (Limbo, USA)Piper Laurie (The Mao Game, USA)Rupert Everett (An Ideal Husband, UK)
2000Zhang Yang (Shower, China)Nathalie Baye (Venus Beauty Institute, France)Dan Futterman (Urbania, USA)
2001Tim Blake Nelson (O, USA)Thora Birch (Ghost World, USA)John Cameron Mitchell (Hedwig and the Angry Inch, USA)
2002Julio Médem (Sex and Lucia, Spain)Isabelle Huppert (The Piano Teacher, Austria/France)Moritz Bleibtreu (Das Experiment, Germany)
2003Niki Caro (Whale Rider, New Zealand)Moon So-ri (Oasis, South Korea)Seol Kyung-gu (Oasis, South Korea)
2004Marco Tullio Giordano (The Best of Youth, Italy)Catalina Sandino Moreno (Maria Full of Grace (Colombia/USA)Luis Tosar (Take My Eyes, Spain)
2005Gregg Araki (Mysterious Skin, USA)Joan Allen (Yes, USA)Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Mysterious Skin, USA)
2006Goran Dukic (Wristcutters: A Love Story, USA)Fiona Gordon (The Iceberg, Belgium)Ryan Gosling (Half Nelson, USA)
2007[4]Daniel Waters (Sex & Death 101, USA)Marion Cotillard (La Vie en Rose, France)Daniel Brühl (Salvador, Spain)
2008Amin Matalqa (Captain Abu Raed, Jordan)Jessica Chastain (Jolene, USA)Alan Rickman (Bottle Shock, USA)
2009Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker, USA)Yolande Moreau (Seraphine), France)Sam Rockwell (Moon, UK)
2010Debra Granik (Winter's Bone, USA)Jennifer Lawrence (Winter's Bone, USA)Luis Tosar (Cell 211, Spain)
2011Larysa Kondracki (The Whistleblower, Canada/Germany)Natasha Petrovic (As If I Am Not There, Ireland)Bill Skarsgård (Simple Simon, Sweden)
2012Benh Zeitlin (Beasts of the Southern Wild, USA)Jamie Chung (Eden, USA)Alan Cumming (Any Day Now, USA)

Jury awards[edit]

YearNew Director AwardNew American Cinema AwardBest Documentary
2007[4]Eric Richter Strand (Sons, Norway)Shotgun Stories (Jeff Nichols, USA)Harald Freidl, (Out of Time, Austria)
YearShort film awards -
Narrative short
Short film awards -
Animated short
Short film awards -
Documentary short
2007[4]Wigald, Timon Modersohn (Germany)Everything Will Be OK, Don Hertzfeldt (USA)Chocolate Country, Robin Blotnick (Dominican Republic / USA)

Premieres[edit]

Among the films that have received North American or world premieres at SIFF are

Gala Event Films[edit]

Seattle[edit]

YearOpening NightOther GalasClosing Night
1991The Miracle (dir. Neil Jordan, UK)Uranus (dir. Claude Berri, France)
1992Le Bal des Casse-Pieds (dir. Yves Robert, France)Equinox (dir. Alan Rudolph, USA)
1993Much Ado About Nothing (dir. Kenneth Branagh, USA)King of the Hill (dir. Steven Soderbergh, USA),
1994Little Buddha (dir. Bernardo Bertolucci, UK)Barcelona (dir. Whit Stillman, USA)
1995Braveheart (dir. Mel Gibson, USA)Cold Comfort Farm (dir. John Schlesinger, UK)
1996The Whole Wide World (dir. Dan Ireland, USA)Emma (dir. Douglas McGrath, USA)
1997Addicted to Love (dir. Griffin Dunne, USA) Addicted to LoveMrs. Brown (dir. John Madden, UK)
1998Firelight (dir. William Nicholson, USA)Smoke Signals (dir. Chris Eyre, USA)This Is My Father (dir. Paul Quinn, USA)
1999The Dinner Game (dir. Francis Veber, France)Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (dir. Jay Roach, USA)
2000Love's Labour's Lost (dir. Kenneth Branagh, UK)A Rumor of Angels (dir. Peter O'Fallon, USA)
2001The Anniversary Party (dir. Jennifer Jason Leigh and Alan Cumming, USA)O (dir. Tim Blake Nelson, USA)

Liam (dir. Stephen Frears, UK)
Tortilla Soup (dir. Maria Ripoll, USA)
Ghost World (dir. Terry Zwigoff, USA)

Investigating Sex (dir. Alan Rudolph, USA)
2002Igby Goes Down (dir. Burr Steers, USA)24 Hour Party People (dir. Michael Winterbottom, UK)Passionada (dir. Dan Ireland, USA)
2003Valentín (dir. Alejandro Agresti, Argentina)H (dir. Lee Jong-hyuk, South Korea)

Caeser (dir. Uli Edel, USA)
PTU (dir. Johnnie To, Hong Kong)
Together (2002 film) (dir. Chen Kaige, South Korea)
Whale Rider (dir. Niki Caro, New Zealand)

Jet Lag (dir. Daniele Thompson, France)
2004The Notebook (dir. Nick Cassavetes, USA)Saved! (dir. Brian Dannelly, USA)

Donnie Darko: The Director's Cut (dir. Richard Kelly, USA)
Before Sunset (dir. Richard Linklater, USA)
Criminal (dir. Gregory Jacobs, USA)

Intimate Strangers (dir. Patrice Leconte, France)
2005Me and You and Everyone We Know (dir. Miranda July, USA)The Dying Gaul (dir. Craig Lucas, USA)

Red Dust (dir. Tom Hooper, UK)
Bombón, el Perro (dir. Carlos Sorín, Argentina)
Côte d'Azur (dir. Olivier Ducastel and Jacques Martineau, France)

Last Days (dir. Gus Van Sant, USA)
2006The Illusionist (dir. Neil Burger, USA)Factotum (dir. Bent Hamer, USA)

Perhaps Love (dir. Peter Ho-Sun Chan, Hong Kong)
A Prairie Home Companion (dir. Robert Altman, USA)
Strangers with Candy (dir. Paul Dinello, USA)

The Science of Sleep (dir. Michel Gondry, France)
2007Son of Rambow (dir. Garth Jennings, USA)2 Days in Paris, (dir. Julie Delpy, France)

A Battle of Wits, (dir. Jacob Cheung, Hong Kong)
The Boss of It All, (dir. Lars von Trier, Denmark)
Evening, (dir. Lajos Koltai, USA)

Molière (dir. Laurent Tirard, France)
YearOpening NightCenterpieceClosing Night
2008Battle in Seattle (dir. Stuart Townsend, USA)The Great Buck Howard (dir. Sean McGinly, USA)Bottle Shock (dir. Randall Miller, USA)
2009In the Loop (dir. Armando Iannucci, UK)Humpday (dir. Lynn Shelton, USA)OSS 117: Lost in Rio (dir. Michel Hazanavicius, France)
2010The Extra Man (dir. Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini, USA)Farewell (dir. Christian Carion, France)Get Low (dir. Aaron Schneider, USA)
2011The First Grader (dir. Justin Chadwick, UK)Service Entrance (dir. Philippe Le Gauy, France)LIfe in a Day (dir. Kevin MacDonald, UK)
2012Your Sister's Sister (dir. Lynn Shelton, USA)The Chef (dir. Daniel Cohen, France)Grassroots (dir. Stephen Gyllenhaal, USA)
2013Much Ado About Nothing (dir. Joss Whedon, USA)Twenty Feet from Stardom (dir. Morgan Neville, USA)The Bling Ring (dir. Sophia Coppola, USA)

Kirkland[edit]

YearOpening Night
2010The Over the Hill Band (dir. Geoffrey Enthoven, Belgium)
2011Bon Appétit (dir. David Pinillos, Spain)
2012Starbuck (dir. Ken Scott, Canada)
2013Papadopoulos & Sons (dir. Marcus Markou, UK)

Renton[edit]

YearOpening Night
2011Redemption Road (original title: Black White and Blues) (dir. Mario Van Peebles, USA)
2012Fat Kid Rules the World (dir. Matthew Lillard, USA)
2013Touchy Feely (dir. Lynn Shelton, USA)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "SIFF to Create New Home for Great Films at Seattle Center". www.siff.net (press release). November 28, 2006. 
  2. ^ "Venues". www.siff.net. Archived from the original on 2010-06-20. 
  3. ^ Lynn Jacobson, Locals swarm huge Seattle fest. Variety, Jun. 19, 2005
  4. ^ a b c d Reel News (SIFF), Autumn 2007, p. 5.
  5. ^ a b c d e News in 2005, SIFF. Accessed 23 November 2006.
  6. ^ Burning in the Wind, SIFF, Accessed 23 November 2006.
  7. ^ a b c Press release, SIFF. Accessed 23 November 2006.
  8. ^ [1], SIFF, Accessed 29 April 2012.
  9. ^ Tomorrow's Weather, SIFF, Accessed 23 November 2006.
  10. ^ 1979 SIFF program (guide/booklet) states this is the World Premiere of Alien

External links[edit]