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54th International Film Festival Rotterdam
30 January – 9 February 2025

Rotterdam, 15 April 2024

Latest RTM Pitch winner announced as IFFR 2025 dates confirmed

Researcher and filmmaker Sharine Rijsenburg will receive €20,000 towards the production of her Afrofuturistic project Bubbling Baby.

With IFFR 2025 confirmed to take place from Thursday 30 January to Sunday 9 February 2025, International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) announces the winner of its latest RTM Pitch. Bubbling, a cultural movement fusing dance, rhythm and electronic music born out of Rotterdam’s Afro-Caribbean community in the 1990s, is the focus of a documentary project awarded a grant of €20,000 by International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) together with the municipality of Rotterdam. Researcher and filmmaker Sharine Rijsenburg will explore Bubbling culture as having both a deep imprint on the city’s identity whilst being simultaneously undervalued. As the winner of the RTM Pitch, the project will receive expert guidance and aims to premiere at IFFR 2025.

Sharine Rijsenburg: “I started as a Young Selector at IFFR in 2019, and it feels like a dream to make my own film for the RTM programme now, five years later. For me, Bubbling Baby is a film about how we in Rotterdam, as a multicultural metropolis, celebrate, remember and appreciate our night culture. The Bubbling subculture shows a history that has helped shape Rotterdam’s identity, yet has remained invisible. With this film, I want to celebrate and make known the value of this cultural heritage.”

Using an Afrofuturistic aesthetic, Bubbling Baby will combine archive material from 1990s Rotterdam with scenes of Bubbling parties and the upcoming Summer Carnival. 

About the filmmaker 

Sharine Rijsenburg is a creative researcher and visual anthropologist based in Rotterdam, who combines explorations into socio-political issues with engaging storytelling. Her short films Paradijsvogels and Paradeis Perdí demonstrate her practice of delving into Dutch and Caribbean archives to investigate the relationship between (self)image, representation and colonial history. She has worked as assistant director on So Loud the Sky Can Hear Us (Lavinia Xausa, RTM Pitch winner 2021 & IFFR 2022) and as a researcher for, among others, VPRO Tegenlicht.

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RTM Pitch winner Sharine Rijsenburg by Weia Tan

About RTM Pitch

The €20,000 grant is financed by the municipality of Rotterdam as part of its film and media policy to encourage local film talent development. The jury consisted of filmmaker and programmer Bregje Benecke, IFFR programmer Koen de Rooij and writer, cultural programmer and organiser Simone Zeefuik.

Read about the previous winners here

IFFR 2025 dates confirmed

The festival also takes the opportunity to confirm the dates for its next edition. IFFR 2025 will take place from Thursday 30 January to Sunday 9 February 2025, during which the annual RTM Day will fall on Friday 31 January. 

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