Magazine article Variety

Montreal Refuses to Play with Other Fests

Magazine article Variety

Montreal Refuses to Play with Other Fests

Article excerpt

Change may be coming to the Montreal fest scene. Last fall Francois Macerola, president of Quebec film-funding agency Sodec, proposed that the city's three main film festivals - the Montreal World Film Festival, Fantasia and the Festival du Nouveau Cinema - should begin collaborating more.

Macerola's idea is not to merge the festivals but rather for the three to work more closely together to create a kind of rolling film festival that would go from July 19, which is when Fantasia kicks off, to Oct. 10, which is when the Festival du Nouveau Cinema unfolds. The Montreal World Film Festival would fall in the middle of this festival of festivals, Aug. 23-Sept. 3.

Both the World Film Festival and the FNC are general-interest auteur gatherings. Fantasia is a genre and fantasy sprocket opera with a big focus on Asian cinema.

There is, however, one hiccup in Macerola's plan. Montreal World topper Serge Losique has rejected the call for cooperation and is going his own way, as is his wont.

Macerola says he won't punish Montreal financially for not participating but he did note that Losique's event is "missing a great chance to progress."

So it's unclear what the future holds for the area fest troika.

Federal film-funding agency Telefilm Canada will be re-evaluating the country's three biggest film festivals - Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver - this year and Telefilm exec director Carolle Brabant admits there are some issues with Losique's festival.

"Is there room for improvement? …

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