This year, Spirit of Fire IDFF celebrates its age of majority. 18 is not a round number, but it is quite important. Over the years, the competition gave rise to various programs and events and has found new friends and viewers all over Ugra. Only a few hours remain before the opening ceremony, which will traditionally take place in the Ugra-Classic CTC.
In the run-up to this event, a press conference was held in Khanty-Mansiysk. There were the Festival's organizers: Vice-President Maria Zvereva, Chairman of the Film Festival's Selection Committee Boris Nelepo and Larisa Zhuravleva, Executive Director of the Spirit of Fire IDFF, Director of the Ugra-Classic CTC.
According to Maria Zvereva, Khanty-Mansiysk has become an important and significant place for 18 years, and the competition itself has grown and is recognized in the world.
"During this time, we adhere to the one central idea: to catch the wind of change which brings innovation to the life of the Festival. But at the same time in no case give the opportunity to blow away what is important in the Festival, so we always have the same main competitive programs of international and Russian cinema. Nevertheless, we are giving rise to new programs that the viewer who grew up with the competition learns. This is a special viewer, so now we are making more complex programs. In addition, each Festival is dedicated to something. This year, for example, it is a children's and youth cinema. Of course, this does not mean that our competition programs are somehow related to children's cinema," said the Vice-President of the IDFF.
Larisa Zhuravleva slightly lifted the veil on the secrecy of the opening ceremony, admitting that the script is still changing. Despite the fact that the President, chief screenwriter and director of the opening and closing, Sergey Solovyov, remains in touch all the time, he watches the rehearsals in a live broadcast.
"In the evening, we plan to surprise our guests and make the ceremony unforgettable. This year, there will be a lot of children on the stage and wonderful music will sound," said the Executive Director of Spirit of Fire.
It should be noted that due to the situation in the world related to the coronavirus, many foreign guests will not be able to attend the Festival, but all of them will be in touch, and the broadcast of the opening ceremony can be watched online.
"In turn, I would like to add that the opening film will be "Pinocchio" by the famous Italian director, this is a premiere for the Russian audience. In Cannes, it was twice winner of the Grand Prix, great actors played in the film, I suggest you watch it, - said Boris Nelepo. – In fact, it is difficult to advise something specific to watch. This Festival is even more intense than usual, as a crossroad of various directions: very diverse films of competitive programs, including children's cinema, "Cinema For All", and a retrospective. Another innovation is the presentation of the program of Russian spherical films in the virtual reality format. I will say one thing: every viewer will find something interesting at this Festival."
The film critic also noted that it is very important for the organizers of the competition to support regional cinema, to move away from the capital and St. Petersburg optics.
"I would like the alchemy that occurs between the films we bring and the audience to be always friendly," added Boris Nelepo.