Thursday, April 23, 2009

Rialto plays host to renowned Italian Film Festival

Italian Film Festival in Atlanta
Films will be screened at 8 p.m. April 28 through May 1
Rialto Center for the Arts, 80 Forsyth St. N.W., Atlanta

The Rialto Center for the Arts will host this year’s Italian Film Festival in Atlanta, an offshoot of Miami’s hugely successful annual festival, April 28 through May 1.

This marks the third year the festival will be in Atlanta, and the first year it will be held at Georgia State University.

“I thought it would be a very good match with the university’s mission,” said Richard Keatley, a lecturer in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages at GSU. “This year, it’s free and open to the public. We want this to be a festival for Atlanta and not just for Georgia State.”

The four films to be screened will all be projected in 35 mm, and audiences will get to vote for the winner of the festival. One of the films to be screened, “I Vicere (The Viceroys),” won the top prize at last year’s Miami festival.

“They’re all films that have had critical success in Italy as well,” Keatley said. “They’re all new Italian films, so they’re films you can’t see on DVD from Netflix.”

The festival will also screen dramas “Parlami d’Amore (Talk to Me About Love)” and “Prendimi l’Anima (The Soul Keeper),” as well as comedy “Notte Prima Degli Esami, Oggi (Night Before the Exams, Today).”

“It’s appropriate to the context here at Georgia State because students are taking their exams,” said Keatley. “It’s a film I think the students will like, a fun film to let them relax during exam week.”

In the coming years, Keatley said he hopes to grow the Atlanta incarnation of the Italian Film Festival and eventually include visits from Italian actors and directors and a short film competition for students.

“Miami started a lot like this,” he said. “This is a chance for a venue every year to bring the best of Italian cinema to Atlanta in a way that’s very accessible.”

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