Italian director Gianfranco Rosi, the only filmmaker to win top awards at two A-list festivals with documentary films, the Golden Lion at Venice with Sacro GRA in 2013 and the Golden Bear at the Berlinale with Fire at Sea in 2016 will be the Guest of Honor for the 2020 edition of the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA).
Rosi’s work will be in the spotlight at IDFA, including his new film Notturno, which premieres in competition at the Venice Film Festival which starts this week. It is the result of the three-year journey that took him to the borders of Syria, Iraq, Kurdistan, and Lebanon.
IDFA’s Artistic Director Orwa Nyrabia says: “Rosi handles every shot like a jeweler would treat a unique pearl, with great care, patience, and with utmost respect, like a sacred object. Then he puts his pearls into a hidden thread, he keeps on examining the way they are ordered, the dialogue between each one of them and the others. What we see in the end is a film, a creature that seems so coherent you cannot see the thread anymore, you cannot imagine that a complex matrix of artistic choices was behind what you see, you even have to think: did he just find the film somewhere? Has it always been there, this way, on its own?”
Rosi’s retrospective at IDFA consists of the following films: Boatman (1993), Below Sea Level (2008), El Sicario, Room 164 (2010), Sacro GRA (2013), Fire at Sea (2016), and Notturno (2020). In addition to the retrospective, IDFA will present a Top 10 of Rosi’s favorite films.
IDFA 2020 takes place in Amsterdam, where some 200 films are programmed in more than 15 theaters from November 18 to 29. In addition, IDFA will present three virtual cinemas with several screenings each day, with online screenings continuing until December 6. Both the cinemas and the online screenings will feature introductions and live interviews with filmmakers. IDFA markets will take place Online from November 16-20.