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Brooklyn Film Festival at Windmill Studios, photo credit Yuko Torihara
Brooklyn Film Festival at Windmill Studios, photo credit Yuko Torihara

Brooklyn Film Festival (BFF) announced its 24th annual edition themed, “The Clearing.” BFF set to take place online via the festival website from June 4-13, and in-person at Windmill Studios in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, from June 5-13. The 2021 film lineup will include 140 film premieres, which will be viewable online 24/7, for the entire 10-day period. At Windmill Studios, BFF will screen a shorter version of the lineup, to create longer intermissions, and ultimately safer festival operations.

BFF, a Canadian Screen Award qualifying festival, received 2,615 films from 91 Countries and will select 140 film premieres programmed into 33 different, two-hour program blocks. Features will play alone (each film is considered one program). Shorts are grouped together by category and direction (i.e. five short narratives by female filmmakers are considered one program).

BFF divides films into six categories: Feature Narrative, Documentary Feature, Short Narrative, Short Documentary, Experimental, and Animation. BFF’s selection criteria, a 24-year-old set of rules, constitutes the true festival trademark: participating films cannot be older than two years; films are selected from submissions only; all selected films participate in the awards competition. The smallest film can win the top festival award: The Grand Chameleon.

BFF Executive Director Marco Ursino said of the 24th edition, “‘The Clearing’ is our 2021 theme. New York residents are getting vaccinated in large numbers and are diligently observing the city rules regarding safe distancing and mask wearing. Cinemas are re-opening with new, safer policies and criteria. Because of this, we feel a sweet sense of optimism, as if we were experiencing a slow awakening from a one-year hibernation. That is why BFF is ready to show indie films to live audiences. Considering the amazing success of last year’s virtual festival, BFF will offer the full lineup online, again this year. ‘The Clearing’ is about safe distancing also from all the accumulated pain and anger of the past year, and is about getting re-acquainted with life’s important values. Fundamentally, ‘The Clearing’ is a message of hope that we want to spread, while trying to leave the ‘Covid tunnel’ behind us.”

BFF also announced that the 17th Annual KidsFilmFest will be staged online together with BFF’s programs, and be available for the entire festival, June 4-13. KidsFilmFest will present two programs of films, tailored for young viewers: age 3 to 7, and 8 to 15. The films are all rated “G,” and consists of numerous animated shorts, documentaries and narrative films.

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