The Edinburgh International Film Festival in its 65th year has hired James Mullighan to produce the ambitious transformation of next year’s Festival, the blueprint of which has been shaped by Mark Cousins, Tilda Swinton and a wider artistic team to be announced.

Moving away from the traditional concept of Film Festivals, the blueprint that Cousins has developed is the theme of “All That Heaven Allows.”  It may cease to have a competition section or prizes, and will focus more on inviting a team of guest curators to programme their own selection of films or contribute to special themed days within the Festival.  The Festival goers will be encouraged to interact with many bold initiatives to bring the city alive, all of which will be revealed later by Cousins and his artistic team.

Gavin Miller, CEO Centre for the Moving Image (CMI) said: “We live in a very fragmented and competitive space and so it becomes much more important to continually refresh, revitalise and re-invent. I’m both confident and excited with this blueprint that Mark Cousins has shaped, which will deliver a unique and distinctive festival. I am delighted also that James is joining us as the producer and I believe that his years at Shooting People put him in a good position to build on the heritage of Edinburgh International Film Festival as a distinctive cultural force.”

James Mullighan was born in Adelaide, South Australia and moved to the United Kingdom nearly 13 years ago. He worked for Sony Classical and Columbia records in Australia, and as a freelance journalist working for a variety of publications including The Scotsman, GQ, Vogue and Rolling Stone. In 2003 he joined the travelling short film festival RESFEST as Producer, UK & Ireland.

Currently Mullighan is Creative Director at Shooting People, the world’s largest network of independent filmmakers, with 38,000 members in the UK and US.  He oversees all day to day operations and has been responsible for building the business.

James Mullighan commented: “I am absolutely thrilled to be appointed to this new position at a film festival that I have long admired and supported.  It has an incredible history of programming the finest films from all over the world and delivering an exciting and innovative programme to a very faithful and enthused audience. Mark describes it as a Ziggy Stardust moment and I think that’s right. We will announce Mark’s blueprint for the festival in the New Year”

Commenting on the initiatives, Caroline Parkinson, Director of Creative Development at Creative Scotland said, “Creative Scotland welcomes the announcement of a team with a strong breadth of experience to take the Edinburgh International Film Festival into the future.”

The 65th Edinburgh International Film Festival will be held on June 15th 2011.

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