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    Ten Years After – Transilvanian International Film Festival

    By Martin Blaney | June 27, 2011

    In photo: Lucian Pintilie receives his Excellency Award from Corneliu Porumboiu, with TIFF’s Mihai Chirilov (left) looking on, courtesy  Adi Marineci

    In photo: Lucian Pintilie receives his Excellency Award from Corneliu Porumboiu, with TIFF’s Mihai Chirilov (left) looking on, courtesy Adi Marineci

    How time flies. One can hardly believe that it’s now more than ten years since Cristi Puiu’s Stuff and Dough screened at the Directors‘ Fortnight in Cannes in 2001 and Cristian Mungiu’s Occident bowed in the same section the following year. The first edition of TIFF was then staged in 2002 at the beginning of a new chapter in Romanian cinema and was followed at the next Berlinale with a special supplement in KINO – German Film dedicated to the new wave of Romanian filmmakers along with portraits of Lucian Pintilie and Radu Gabrea.

    This year’s TIFF saw the publication of the special edition of AperiTIFF – Romanian Cinema 2011, which is the second annual special magazine about contemporary Romanian cinema. Lavishly illustrated and packed with up-to-date information, this magazine is another collaboration by the festival with the Romanian Cultural Institute and Corina Suteu of the Romanian Cultural Institute in New York. As TIFF artistic director Mihai Chirilov explains, the first special issue of aperiTIFF last year had focussed on Romanian cinema in 2010 „because it was an extremely rich year with three films in Cannes and plenty of other premieres. It was the year in the Romanian cinema.“

    This second issue, though, is dominated by the number 10 as indicated from the start by the design on the magazine’s cover. One article is dedicated, for example, to the 10 key faces of Romanian cinema – ranging from Luminita Gheorghiu from The Death of Mr Lazarescu to Razvan Vasilescu of California (Dreamin’) as well as such newer faces as Dorothee Petre and Maria Popiastu – while another feature returns to Cristi Puiu’s Stuff and Dough 10 years after its release and juxtaposes a review of the film from today’s perspective with one written 10 years ago as well as presenting testimonials from all of the key members involved in the film such as the actors, DoP, producers, scriptwriters and director Puiu.

    The number 10 also figures in the section devoted to the Romanian director Lucian Pintilie who is the subject of the first complete retrospective (of course, with 10 films) ever to have been staged in his native country. „There are articles on his films from the Romanian and international perspective, a long interview with Pintilie and excerpts from his memoirs which have only appeared to date in Romanian and French, but deserve to be translated in English,“ Chirilov says.

    Pintilie is widely regarded as the inspiration for the Romanian filmmakers post 2001 – as Corneliu Porumboiu said at TIFF’s awards ceremony when he came on stage to present the Excellence Award to the veteran director, „as a young boy, when I was growing up, I wanted to be Lucian Pintilie.“ Moreover, an extensive interview was conducted with cinematographer Oleg Mutu who was one of the recipients of the Special Award created on the occasion of the festival’s 10th anniversary. „He was the key DoP of two masterpieces of the new Romanian Cinema [The Death of Mr Lazarescu and 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days], and is the only Romanian DoP to have become involved in international productions such as My Joy and Innocent Saturday,“ Chirilov explains.

    Last but not least, the special edition looks back at 10 editions of TIFF and includes comments from past guests about how the festival has grown and developed over the years. Also thrown into the mix is a survey of the current state of Romanian cinema and reviews of new films showing at this year’s Romanian Days as well as a DVD featuring a selection of brand-new Romanian shorts such as Anca Miruna Lazarescu’s Silent River, Luiza Parvu’s Draft 7, and Ioana Uricaru’s Stopover.

    „The magazine is dedicated to Alex. Leo Serban to whom we pay an emotional tribute with a professional and personal account of him both as a person and a man of cinema,“ Chirilov declares. „He is present in all of the relevant sections with a review of Stuff and Dough from 10 years ago, an overview of the Romanian cinema of 2010, and an unfinished essay on Pintilie which was the last piece he wrote.“

    More details about this special edition of AperiTIFF can be obtained at www.tiff.ro or www.icrny.org.

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