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Unveiling the Spectacular Lineup: A Six-Day Celebration of Diverse and Daring Cinema at Edinburgh International Film Festival


We are excited to unveil the full program for an extraordinary six-day celebration of diverse and daring cinema at the centre of the world’s largest arts festival

This impressive lineup includes 24 new feature films, 5 retrospective titles, 5 short film programs, and an outdoor screening weekend featuring 7 additional features.

In addition to the previously announced Opening Night film, ‘Silent Roar,‘ the festival showcases a curated selection brimming with fresh voices. With 11 debut features in the lineup, we take pride in supporting and promoting a new wave of talented filmmakers from the UK.

Scotland’s creative output shines brightly in this festival, with 5 feature films and 19 short films representing the region. Notably, the program features the world premiere of six newly commissioned documentaries as part of the Bridging The Gap Documentary Short Films series.

Closing Night film ‘Fremont’ caps an international selection that includes work from celebrated arthouse directors, Kelly Reichardt, Ira Sachs, Cauleen Smith, and Christian Petzold, and showcases enticing work from Argentina, Brazil, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Japan, South Korea, and the United States. 

Anaita Wali Zada in Fremont (Photo courtesy of Modern Films)

American independent cinema is celebrated in a retrospective of four films made by rebellious filmmaking voices in the 1980s and 1990s, while Shane Meadows ‘Dead Man’s Shoes’, which had its World Premiere at EIFF in 2004, is given a Retrospective Gala presentation. 

Five feature films will be presented as World Premieres, and the Festival also sees the launch of The Lynda Myles Project, including a discussion event on the living legacy of Myles’ contributions to film culture, and a special work-in-progress preview of a new documentary, ‘The Lynda Myles Project: A Manifesto’. 

Placing an emphasis on deeper engagement for audiences, Encounters is a new series of discussion events that place dialogue at the centre of the Festival and position cinema in conversation with other art forms. 

Themes across the film programme include incisive works of non-fiction activism; films making thrilling use of genre to explore social, sexual and psychological issues; films made by artists; LGBTQIA+ stories; a lip-smacking selection of animation; and category-defying films that are just damn stylish and entertaining. 

Listings will go live on the EIF website from 10 am on Thursday 6 July with tickets going on sale midday on Friday 7 July via https://www.eif.co.uk/edfilmfest 

Edinburgh International Film Festival (EIFF), which this year is hosted by Edinburgh International Festival, has today announced the programme for its special 2023 edition. The hand-picked programme celebrates the work of exceptional local and global filmmakers ensuring the flame of independent cinema burns bright for future generations of passionate film fans.  

EIFF is pleased to be working with its cinema venue partners Vue Edinburgh Omni and Everyman Edinburgh at the St James Quarter, while the Old College Quad at the University of Edinburgh is the beautiful setting for a weekend of outdoor screenings, Cinema Under the Stars, offering audiences a welcoming selection of films set to make the heart sing. 

This year’s Edinburgh International Film Festival programme has been brought together by a team of programmers led by Kate Taylor, Programme Director of the Festival, including feature film programmers Rafa Sales Ross and Anna Bogutskaya, and short film programmers Abigail Addison, Lydia Beilby and Holly Daniel. Alongside Taylor, the EIFF Team is led by Executive Producer Tamara Van Strijthem and Festival Producer Emma Boa.  

EIFF is supported by Screen Scotland, and enhanced engagement activities are supported by the Scottish Government’s Festivals Expo Fund alongside the PLaCE Programme (a partnership between the Scottish Government, the City of Edinburgh Council and the Edinburgh Festivals). 

“With this year’s vivid film selection the EIFF programme team has favoured the bold, drawn to filmmakers with searching perspectives and style to burn. Designed for an eclectic spectrum of film fans, and defined by a love of independent cinema, this compact programme shines a light on new talent, and offers a smashing six-day journey for the EIFF’s passionate audiences.” 

Kate Taylor, Programme Director, Edinburgh International Film Festival

“EIFF has put exceptional debut filmmakers front and centre, from Johnny Barrington’s Silent Roar, Rodger Griffiths’ Kill, to Ella Glendining’s Is There Anybody Out There? alongside an impeccable curation of internationally acclaimed work. The infectious energy of Edinburgh in August is palpable in the EIFF team and we’re excited for audiences to discover this year’s wonderful programme.” 

Isabel Davis, Executive Director of Screen Scotland

“A festival is a gathering of perspectives in a moment in time that reflect the world around us. This year, the Edinburgh International Festival is proud to host the return of this forward-looking programme from the Edinburgh International Film Festival, and support these moments of curiosity and connection that imbue our festival city each August.”

Francesca Hegyi, Chief Executive, Edinburgh International Festival

“I’m delighted to see so much Scottish and international film talent represented in this year’s Edinburgh International Film Festival programme. The Scottish Government is proud to support the festival with £155,000 from the PLaCE Fund – run jointly with the City of Edinburgh Council – and £59,000 from our Expo Fund. They both support Scottish talent development particularly emerging film programmers and mid-career writers in the case of our Expo Fund.”

Culture Secretary Angus Robertson

Edinburgh International Film Festival runs from Friday 18 to Wednesday 23 August 2023.   

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