On February 7th, the 36th Annual Portland International Film Festival (PIFF) will kick off their 17-day celebration of world cinema. In the past they’ve opened the festival with films like F For Fake, Potiche, and I Am Love. This year they’re highlighting this magical, black and white, silent Spanish adaptation of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves: Pedro Berger’s Blancanieves.
Once upon a time there was a little girl who had never known her mother. She learned the art of her father, a famous bullfighter, but was hated by her evil stepmother. One day she ran away with a troupe of dwarves, and became a legend. Set in southern Spain in 1920s, BLANCANIEVES is a tribute to silent films.
There was a brief moment when the festival was toying with the idea of opening with Wayne Blair’s Australian film, The Sapphires, but I’m so happy that I’ll finally have the chance to see Blancanieves. I’ve been hearing about this since late last year as the various countries were submitting their films for consideration for the Best Foreign Film Oscar. The film picked up US theatrical distribution back in October through the Cohen Media Group (they’re currently touring the restored edition of Luis Bunuel’s Tristana, and will be releasing the 1924 version of The Thief Of Bagdad on Blu-ray soon).
The printed schedule for PIFF36 should be making its way around town now, as they just uploaded a PDF version of it online this past Thursday. They’ll have it online soon, and I’ll be sure to post it here, and highlight a number of the films that I’m excited about seeing.
Check out the trailer for Blancanieves, courtesy of Cohen Media Group:
Here are a few stills from the film, to whet your appetite:
A couple of posters for the film:
I will definitely be clearing my schedule for this opening night film, and I hope to run into a few readers / listeners at the screening event.
As we get closer to the festival, we’ll feature more of these previews, have plenty of reviews of the films screening at the festival, and hopefully we’ll release a podcast or two, discussing how the festival is going.