Festival | Festival do Rio

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The 13th Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival (Festival do Rio), which is headquartered in the historic heart of the city at the Armazém da Utopia, will screen some 350 films from more than 60 countries at 40 venues across the city. The festival is taking place from Thursday 6 October through Tuesday 18 October.

Festival do Rio opened on Thursday 6 October with the Brazilian premiere of Pedro Almodovar’s highly acclaimed The Skin I Live In. Actress Marisa Paredes is in Rio to support the film.

The festival’s prize giving ceremony will take place on Tuesday 18 October, with a final gala world premiere screening on Monday, 17 October of Walter Carvalho’s documentary Raul, the story of the charismatic and controversial rock singer Raul Seixas.


Brazilian films and Première Brasil, which has as its festival home the historic Odeon Petrobras in downtown Rio de Janeiro, is the heart of Festival do Rio and the best annual global showcase of contemporary Brazilian cinema.

Première Brasil is the only competitive section of Festival do Rio with jury awards to be presented on Tuesday, 18 October. Three highly prized audience awards will also be bestowed on the best Brazilian feature film, best documentary and best short film.

This year Première Brasil competitive section includes nine feature films, eight feature length documentaries and a number of shorts. A further five features and three documentary features will screen hors concours, while a number of other Brazilian films will screen in other special Première Brasil sidebars.

In total Première Brasil will screen over 80 new Brazilian productions during the festival, most of which are having their world premieres in Rio.


For the past decade Festival do Rio has been known for bringing the best of international cinema to Brazil, and this year is no exception with more than 60 countries represented across the festival program by nearly 350 new or historically important films.

As an example of the truly panoramic scope of world cinema on show in the Rio Festival, the programming will feature no less than 11 films chosen at an early stage which have since been selected by their home countries to represent them in the Oscar Foreign Language category. Oscar submissions from Albania, Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary, Iran, Italy, Lebanon, Mexico, Norway and South Africa are all to be screened.

The full program can be viewed at “Films Screening”. Films can be searched by both their Portuguese and English language title, by director, by section, by date, or by theatre.
From its Latin American neighbours the festival is offering audiences its by now traditional Première Latin. Together they will give a number of films from the region their Brazilian premiere as well as featuring films from the European Latin countries such as Spain, Portugal and Italy.

The bulk of the international programming is screening in:

World Panorama (Panorama Mundial)
Expectations 2011 (Expectativa)
Unique Itineraries (Itinerarios Unicos)
Limits & Frontiers (Limites e Fronteiras)
Generation (Geração)
Environment (Meio Ambiente)
Midnight Movies
Midnight Movies
Midnight Terrors
Midnight Music
Film Doc
Gay World (Mundo Gay)
Treasures from the Archives (Tesouros da Cinemateca)
Critics’ Week (Semana da Critica)

Each year the festival chooses to shine the spotlight on one particular country’s filmmakers. In 2011 the country in focus is Italy. There are also special sidebars looking at Israeli cultural identity in Images of Israel, and contemporary American life in Made in the USA.

In a cooperation between France and Brazil, the Festival will also stage a tribute to 50 Years of Semaine de la Critique, showing 20 classic French and Brazilian films including Carlos Diegues’ Ganga Zumba, Leos Carax’s Boy Meets Girl, and Paulo Cesar Saraceni’s O Porto das Caixas.

The festival is also honouring three leading directors with special focuses and career retrospectives. The directors in question are Italy’s horror maestro, Dario Argento; Hungary’s Bela Tarr, one of the world’s most talented and original ‘social realism’ film makers; and Chilean documentary filmmaker Patricio Guzman, who will also receive the Latin American Personality of the Year prize. There is also a section for Mathew Modine’s shorts.


While a large part of the festival is targeted towards the resident Brazilian public, Festival do Rio also has a very strong industry section. RioMarket offers seminars, Master Classes, industry screenings, one-to-one scheduled meetings, and networking events covering film, home entertainment and television. The full program can be found in the RioMarket section of the site. The majority of the RioMarket events are centred at the Armazém da Utopia in downtown Rio.

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