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May 24, 2022

Three Romanian films in NY Film Festival line-up

For the first time, the elitist New York Film Festival, which usually picks about 30 films out of the yearly global harvest, presents three Romanian feature films: “Autobiografia lui Nicolae Ceausescu” (The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceausescu), “Aurora” and “Marti, dupa Craciun” (Tuesday, after Christmas), according to HotNews.ro.

The films will have their American premiere on September 28 (“Marti, dupa Craciun”), October 3 (“Aurora”) and October 9 (“Autobiografia lui Nicolae Ceausescu”). Alongside the directors of the three films – Andrei Ujica, Cristi Puiu and Radu Muntean -, the producer Velvet Moraru and the editor Dana Bunescu (“Autobiografia lui Nicolae Ceausescu”) will also be present in New York, while the Romanian Cultural Institute in New York (ICRNY) covers the travel costs for actors Mimi Branescu and Mirela Oprisor (“Marti, dupa Craciun”). Tudor Lucaciu, the cinematographer of Radu Muntean’s film, will travel on his own expense. The same will go, most likely, for Bobby Paunescu, one of the producers of “Aurora”.

“Autobiografia lui Nicolae Ceausescu” may boast the best place in the festival selection. Andrei Ujica’s documentary will be screened in a select company, in the “Special Events” category, alongside: “A Letter to Elia, (2010) by Martin Scorsese and Kent Jones, “America, America” (1963) by Elia Kazan, “Nuremberg” (1948) by Stuart Schulberg, “Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff: (2010) by Craig McCall, “A Matter of Life and Death” (1946) by Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, “The Hole” (2009) by Joe Dante, “Dracula” (1931) by George Melford, “Foreign Parts” (2010) by Verena Paravel & J. P. Sniadecki, as well as a selection of films signed by Segundo de Chomon, known as the “Spanish Melies”.

“Aurora” and “Marti, dupa Craciun” are included in the main selection, which features, among other films, “Uncle Boonmee Who can Recall His Past Lives” by Apichatpong Weerasethakul, “Black Venus” by Abdellatif Kechiche, “Film Socialisme” by Jean-Luc Godard, “Lemon NYC” by Michael Epstein, “Mysteries de Lisbon” by Raul Ruiz, “Des hommes et des dieux” by Xavier Beauvois or “My Joy” by Serghei Loznitsa, with a cinematography signed by Oleg Mutu and starring, among others, Vlad Ivanov. The New York Film Festival will open this year with the latest film of David Fincher, “The Social Network”, and is to close with “Hereafter”, directed by Clint Eastwood.

“The presence of three Romanian films among the 30 selected is, of course, the result of the new wave’s talent, as well as of the strong promotion campaign, staged by ICRNY down here, on very poor resources compared to the amounts invested by other cultural institutes, but with great flexibility and efficiency ,” Corina Suteu, director of the New York institute, stated.

The New York Film Festival is only one chapter in this autumn’s Romanian cinema season on the North American continent. The festival is held between September 24 and October 10, and it will be preceded, between September 3 and 6, by the 37th edition of the Telluride Festival, where there will be Romanian representatives, although they are now under the embargo of an official announcement. Between September 9 and 19 the Toronto Festival will take place, a festival in which Romania is represented, so far (the final selection will be announced on August 24), by “Autobiografia lui Nicolae Ceausescu” and “Periferic” (Marginal) by Bogdan George Apetri. October 7 to 21 are the dates between which the Chicago International Film Festival will be held, a festival reaching its 46th edition, in which “Marti, dupa Craciun” will be screened, again. “Eu cand vreau sa fluier, fluier” (If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle), by Florin Serban, has also been selected in the Chicago IFF.

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