"The 16th edition of the Crossing Europe Film Festival in Linz presented politically illuminating and aesthetically bold films. Christine Dollhofer, the founder and director of Crossing Europe fitted the 16th edition of the festival with intense cinematic works that not only showed us new perspectives on European auteur cinema – as was the case with the brilliant showing of the complete works by the Spanish conceptional filmmaker Jaime Rosales – but also aided in understanding and shedding light on current political woes and states."
Stefan Grissemann / profil (AT)
We are happy to say that a great number of festival audience members followed our call to travel across Europe on the silver screen in 2019. Over six days almost 24.000 festival audience members attended 184 screenings and took part in the 22 accompanying programs. (The attendance numbers from May 1 at the “Best-of CROSSING EUROPE” at the City-Kino have been projected for the overall result.)
In comparison to the year 2018 this means an increase of around 1,000 attendees, which is probably the result of both the attractive and diverse festival program, as well as the “cinema weather” over the past few days – especially on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday there was a great rush to the screening halls.
The increase included both the screenings – 149 hand-picked feature films and documentaries from 48 countries were presented – as well as the accompanying programs, among other things, the offered workshop programs in the context of the newly established YAAAS! Youth Program, as well as the YAAAS! school screenings were both accepted very well. Around 140 film guests from all over Europe attended the film discussions, talks, Masterclass, and networking events, transforming Linz into the center of the European festival map for one week.
This year’s festival edition presented itself as lively, creative, open to the world, multilingual, critical, and diverse, and took the festival audiences along on a virtual trip through Europe, from the Arctic all across the continent to the Black Sea. A number of previous CROSSING EUROPE guests and award winners also took part in the trip with their current productions – central films shown at this year’s festival were made by directors who have been connected to the festival for fifteen years, and thereby also helped shape it, to be mentioned here are a.o Joanna Hogg (Tribute guest 2014), the freshly crowned award winner Thomas Heise (had a special in Linz in 2006) and this year’s Tribute guest Jaime Rosales (whose first feature film THE HOURS OF THE DAY was part of the competition in the very first edition of CROSSING EUROPE).
New paths – in comparison to the past – were taken by CROSSING EUROPE in the field of film and media education. The YAAAS! Youth Program intended to put the focus on tomorrow’s festival audiences, which was also accomplished this year. The various YAAAS! modules were created for audience members between the ages of fifteen and nineteen, and included practical workshops, a video project that spanned multiple days, presentations, a “speed dating” with industry professionals, and a new competition section in the form of the YAAAS! Competition that was curated by a group of youths – the YAAAS! Young Programmers. The YAAAS! Youth Jury then awarded one of the six competition films. Altogether 900 teenagers joined the first YAAAS! edition.
Conclusion: CROSSING EUROPE presented itself once again as a cinematographic show case of European film with a focus on the creative energy and the diversity of European filmmaking.