What’s It All About:
Founded in 1953, this festival is held in the Spanish city of San Sebastián. Although it was originally intended to honour Spanish-language films, movies in other languages became eligible for consideration in 1955, when the festival specialised in color films. It has been acknowledged by the International Federation of Film Producers Associations (FIAPF, Fédération Internationale des Associations de Producteurs de Films) as an ‘A’ category festival since 1957, with the exception of the 1980–1984 period, when no major awards were given.
Watch Out For!
This year, the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI, short for Fédération Internationale de la Presse Cinématographique) has awarded its Grand Prix for Best Film award of the year to the Terrence Malick film, The Tree Of Life. The award will be presented at the opening ceremony of the festival.
In earlier editions of the festival, the FIPRESCI Grand Prix was given to films directed by some of the biggest names worldwide like Pedro Almodóvar, Paul Thomas Anderson, Jafar Panahi, Kim Ki-duk, Aki Kaurismäki, Nuri Bülge Ceylan, Jean-Luc Godard, Cristian Mungiu, Michael Haneke and Roman Polanski.
• Donostia Lifetime Achievement Award: Hollywood actress Glenn Close will receive this year’s Donostia lifetime achievement award on September 18 in the Kursaal Auditorium.
• The actress will introduce the European premiere (Out-of-Competition) of her latest film, Albert Nobbs. Helmed by Rodrigo García, the movie is set in the 19th century Ireland, a society dominated by men where women have no opportunities and are condemned to a life of servitude. The star of the film (Close) is a woman who disguises herself as a man to get a job in a hotel and earn the money she needs to fulfill her dream.
• The festival’s opening gala will present Intruders, the new film from director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo, who has directed films like Intacto, 28 Weeks Later. Intruders is a horror/thriller featuring an international cast starring Clive Owen, Carice van Houten, Daniel Brühl, Pilar López de Ayala and Kerry Fox.
• The world premiere screening of Intouchables (Untouchable), written and directed by Eric Toledano and Olivier Nakache. Intouchables will be screened Out-of-Competition after the festival closing gala on September 24.Intouchables is a witty comedy on the unexpected friendship between two people with nothing in common and very different ways of understanding life: A millionaire left tetraplegic after an accident and the man hired as his carer, an immigrant from the Parisian suburbs recently released from prison.
• Fifteen Spanish films selected for the festival’s ‘Made in Spain’ Section of which some titles include El Abrazo De Los Peces (The Embrace Of The Fishes), Blackthorn, Finisterrae and Primos (Cousinhood)
Awards At The Festival:
An international jury evaluates the films in the Official Section and awards the following prizes:
• Golden Shell for the best film
• Special Jury Prize
• Silver Shell for the best director
• Silver Shell for the best actress
• Silver Shell for the best actor
• Jury Prize for the best cinematography
• Jury Prize for the best screenplay