Less glamour and more quality. This seems to be the philosophy of the 7th edition of the Rome International Film Festival.
Its new director wants to turn Rome’s cinema happening into a workshop of original ideas and emerging artistic talents rather than a catwalk for VIPs. So far the numbers confirm his new deal: 59 world premieres will be screened during the 9-day festival, from November 9 the 17th.
There are two major competitions: the International Award, whose jury is headed by Jeff Nichols, one of the key US indie directors, and the avant-garde CinemaXXI prize, whose jury has the Scot Douglas Gordon, a leading innovator of contemporary video research, as president.
Walter Hill will receive the Maverick Director Award, the prize meant to celebrate out-of-the-pack film directors and will present his new movie drawn by a graphic novel Bullet to the Head with Sylvester Stallone.
The other leading figure of the US indie scene in Rome for the Festival is Roman Coppola with his A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III, starring Charlie Sheen and Bill Murray.
Rise of the Guardians – The 5 Legends, the latest Dreamworks’ cartoon in 3D about children’s fantasy and imagination, inspired by the literary works of William Joyce, will be awarded the Vanity Fair Excellence prize.
The CinemaXXI competition will feature Paul Verhorven’s Tricked and Tutto Parla di Te, starring Charlotte Rampling.
The last episode of the Twilight saga, Breaking Dawn – Part II, will also be presented in world premier on November 13. It is not clear yet whether Robert Pattinson will attend the premiere.
There will be three master classes open to the public: one by Walter Hill, the other one by Paul Verhoeven, and the third one by James Franco and Douglas Gordon.
A special event will be dedicated to Matthew Modine and Full Metal Jacket. The restored version of Kubrick’s masterwork will be screened during the Festival. A photography exhibit of 100 pictures taken by Modine on the set of Full Metal Jacket will be on display and a video devoted to the actor will also be on show to celebrate the 25th anniversary of this water-shedding movie.
Another free photo show at the Auditorium is the actors’ portraits collection by the Italian photographer Francesco Escalar. In another location, the Galleria Alberto Sordi, you can see for free from November 9 to the 17th 20 scene shots of Universal Pictures’ most important movies as the US major celebrates its centennial anniversary this year.
Two other events are connected to the Film Festival. You can see the winning short films of the Louis Vuitton Journeys Awards  for student of the best cinema schools of the world from November 8 to the 19th in the French luxury maker’s shop in downtown Rome. While Rome’s brand new videogame museum Vigamus  will host a special event on films and videogames, Playing Movies, on November 11 at 11am.
Last but not least, here are a few more celebrities that you can see on the red carpet between November 9 and the 17th, besides those that we mentioned above: Adrien Brody, Jude Law, Julian Sands, Lou Doillon, Sergio Rubini and Stephen Dorff.
Enjoy the view!
PS All the movies are in original version with subtitles.