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PRESS RELEASE

53rd International Film Festival Rotterdam
25 January – 4 February 2024

Rotterdam, 5 December 2023

Exploring cinematic frontiers: Scud, Rachel Maclean, Spinvis and expanded cinema at IFFR 2024

Discover the first Focus programmes and Art Directions lineups

International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) announces the medium-defying filmmakers, immersive experiences and groundbreaking art confirmed for the 2024 edition. Hong Kong filmmaker Scud, Scottish artist Rachel Maclean and Colectivo Los Ingrávidos take centre stage with retrospective Focus programmes, alongside a showcase on Chilean cinema in exile. With Art Directions, the festival explores the boundaries of what cinema can be, through installations, audio-visual performances and immersive media across Rotterdam.

Highlights

  • Hong Kong filmmaker Scud’s swan song Naked Nations – Tribe Hong Kong will world premiere at IFFR, marking the pinnacle of a provocative career.
  • Scottish artist Rachel Maclean’s retrospective, including the world premiere of her film and installation DUCK, promises a journey through the cute and sinister.
  • The world premiere of the immersive experience 8 miljard ikken by Tibor de Jong features a captivating score composed by the renowned Dutch artist Spinvis.
  • Sergio Caballero, the Tiger Award-winning filmmaker, presents the world premiere of his latest film, 'Lolo & Sosaku' The Western Archive, accompanied by a performance from the Argentine-Japanese duo, Lolo and Sosaku.
  • In Rotterdam’s Central Station, visitors will encounter the installation Unfolding, crafted by the artist duo Anne Fehres and Luke Conroy – a futuristic yoga class led by a gold-clad instructor.


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Clockwise, stills from the films: DUCK, 8 miljard ikken, 'Lolo & Sosaku' The Western Archive, Unfolding

Focus: Scud

In 2022, the Hong Kong artist provocateur Danny Cheng Wan-Cheung, otherwise known as Scud, announced that he would retire following his tenth and final film. IFFR is delighted to host the world premiere of that film, Naked Nations – Tribe Hong Kong. A trailblazer of queer Asian cinema, Scud’s work is audacious, passionate, cruel, loving and consistently stubborn. All ten of his films will screen in the Focus programme dedicated to his career.


Read more about the Focus: Scud programme 


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Still from the film Naked Nations – Tribe Hong Kong

Focus: Chile in the Heart

On 11 September 1973, following the coup that marked the beginning of Augusto Pinochet’s 17-year dictatorship, masses of Chileans fled the country for an unknown future far away. In 1974, catalysed by pioneering works like Sergio Castilla's Pinochet: fascista, asesino, traidor, agente del imperialismo or Raúl Ruiz's Dialogue d'exilés, a historically unique phenomenon started to take shape: the Chilean cinema in exile. The vast majority of Chile's film culture dispersed across twenty nations. IFFR marks the 50th anniversary with a grand overview of the phenomenon – 25 features and shorts – that melds revered classics with rarely-seen shorts and television works from the first decade of production.

Focus: Colectivo Los Ingrávidos

The radical, avant-garde Colectivo Los Ingrávidos from Tehuacán, Mexico have produced more than 500 films over 12 years. A Focus programme delves into their pivotal themes – political resistance, land, myth, and trance – all intertwined with a revolutionary, counter-capitalist and anti-mass media vision. Eleven films will screen, featuring the world premieres of Colmillos, and Ritual, and Seeds. A live music performance by Codarts students will accompany a screening of Tonalli as part of the Art Directions: sound//vision programme.


Read more about the Focus: Colectivo Los Ingrávidos programme

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Stills from the films: Colmillos and Ritual

Focus: Rachel Maclean

Scottish multimedia artist Rachel Maclean is renowned for her candy-coloured creations that straddle an unnerving boundary between cute and sinister. She has been widely exhibited internationally including with major art commissions, and IFFR is delighted to bring together a programme of her work on film, along with immersive media and installations. 


Her newest film DUCK will have its world premiere at IFFR, starring deep-fakes of Sean Connery and Marilyn Monroe. It will be presented both as part of a film compilation and as a gallery installation. An immersive media experience is also presented, I’m Terribly Sorry: an interactive shoot-em-up stroll through a dystopian UK.  


Read more about the Focus: Rachel Maclean programme

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Still from the film I’m Terribly Sorry

Art Directions

Maclean’s immersive and gallery works find their place within IFFR’s Art Directions programme, the space where the festival steps out of the screening room and pushes the limits of what cinema can be. At galleries and artistic spaces across Rotterdam, curious audiences encounter cinema in unexpected forms: immersive media, performances, live music and visual art. 


Across the programme, filmmakers, artists and musicians bend convention to offer mind-expanding dialogues on critical issues: from the rise of artificial intelligence to the threats of climate change, as well imagining colourful, utopian visions of the future.  


In Rotterdam’s Central Station, international Netherlands-based artist duo Anne Fehres and Luke Conroy plunge visitors into a futuristic yoga class led by a gold-clad instructor with the world premiere of Unfolding. The installation invites contemplations on the interplay between humanity, nature, and the wellness industry. 

Artist Phumulani Ntuli presents the installation Cloud Migration, an animated, digital collage-style reflection on history and a contemporary lens on South African image-making.


Included in the immersive media programme are works by Charlotte Bruneau, Floris van Laethem and Aay Liparoto. Tibor de Jong presents the world premiere of 8 miljard ikken, an existential virtual reality exploration with new music by renowned Dutch artist Spinvis, who will perform live during the festival. 


Tiger Award-winning filmmaker Sergio Caballero screens the world premiere of his latest film 'Lolo & Sosaku' The Western Archive in the Harbour programme. The Argentine-Japanese artist duo Lolo and Sosaku, whose performance forms the climax to the film, join the Art Directions programme with The End: a unique kinetic performance first performed at Sonár Festival in Barcelona in 2023. 


Live audio-visual performances meld music with film, celluloid and light at WORM for sound//vision, including performances from Tjalling de Leeuw in 't Veld, Jan Kulka and Naima Joris, who for Naima Joris: 'O' plays an improvised performance accompanying images of microscopic plankton by Dutch filmmaker-photographer Jan van IJken.


Read more about the Art Directions programme 


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Clockwise, stills from the films: Unfolding, Cloud Migration, The End, Naima Joris: 'O'

More information for press

Applications for accreditation are now open. Apply here. The IFFR 2024 press conference will be held online at 11.00 CET on Monday 18 December.


Click here for the film stills.

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