Deferment of the Alliance Française French Film Festival New Zealand 2019

Dear audience, dear partners,

The Trustees of the French Film Arts Trust, the governing body of the Alliance Française French Film Festival, have decided not to proceed with the 2019 edition of the Festival.

There will be no Alliance Française French Film Festival in 2019 in New Zealand.

This has been a very difficult decision as the Festival has brought so much pleasure to so many people, bringing them together to enjoy a cinema experience of highly creative and vibrant French films. The 2018 edition of the Festival brought the magic of French cinema to thirteen different centres and attracted over 36,000 admissions.

Sadly, the limited size of the box office available for subtitled films in a single foreign language, steadily increasing costs and very limited resources, means that the commercial risk involved in mounting another edition of the Festival in its present form is just too challenging at the moment.

The Trust is taking time to rebuild the Festival for the future.

We would like to offer our heartfelt thanks to all those who have given us so much support over the years; our two strategic partners, the Embassy of France and the Alliance Française; the cinemas who have screened our films and the film distributors; our sponsors and funding bodies; community, cultural and media partners; our Festival Director and her team; and, of course, our wonderful audiences who have shared this adventure with us.

On behalf of the Trustees,

John Martins
Chairman, French Film Arts Trust

Spotlight on a Sponsor: New Caledonia Tourism

To celebrate our fantastique 2018 Festival sponsors, we are continuing our ‘Spotlight on a Sponsor’ special on our blog to introduce the people behind the brand. This week, we are pleased to present our Silver Sponsor New Caledonia Tourism.

Sally Pepermans sat down to answer our short questionnaire and give us some insight into the company.

What is your favourite thing about French culture? 

Having cheese with bread at the end of every meal!

Which French films from the 2018 programme are you most looking forward to?

Back to Burgundy.

How does your company bring a French touch to New Zealand? 

Being the Tourism Board, our mission, is to promote New Caledonia as a holiday destination for New Zealanders, and New Caledonia is a little piece of France lost in the South Pacific.

What is your favourite French saying?

Il fait un froid de canard ! I remember when I arrived in New Zealand a couple of years ago, talking about our Auckland winter weather I literally translated: It’s freezing as a duck! And all my Kiwi friends are still laughing…

Which French-speaking destination would be your dream holiday?

New Caledonia is only 2h30 flight from Auckland and you can find almost everything you have in France (cheese, wine, baguette, crunchy croissant….) which a much better climate so let’s jump on the flight!

Otherwise, I wouldn’t mind going back to Bordeaux, my hometown for a good oysters plateau and a glass of crispy Entre-Deux-mers!

Spotlight on a Sponsor: Renault New Zealand

To celebrate our fantastique 2018 Festival sponsors, we are continuing our ‘Spotlight on a Sponsor’ special on our blog to introduce the people behind the brand. This week, we are pleased to present our Principal Sponsor Renault New Zealand.

Henry Belt sat down to answer our short questionnaire and give us some insight into the company.

What is your favourite thing about French culture? 

Food….of course

Which French films from the 2018 programme are you most looking forward to?

I’m not sure anything will beat the performance of Dr Knock in the movie “Knock

How does your company bring a French touch to New Zealand? 

Through being the distributor for the 120 year old French car company- Renault

What is your favourite French saying?

That would be – C’est la vie

Which French-speaking destination would be your dream holiday?

France!!

Spotlight on a Sponsor: Aircalin

To celebrate our fantastique 2018 Festival sponsors, we are continuing our ‘Spotlight on a Sponsor’ special on our blog to introduce the people behind the brand. This week, we are pleased to present our wonderful Silver Sponsor Aircalin.

Vanessa Tjemplon, Sales Executive New Zealand for Aircalin, sat down to answer our short questionnaire and give us some insight into the company.

What is your favourite thing about French culture? 

The Food and the wine of course…

Which French films from the 2018 programme are you most looking forward to?

The documentaries from New Caledonia but also C’est La vie.

How does your company bring a French touch to New Zealand? 

Our cabin crew are all French so you would get the French hospitality the moment you step on board our aircraft. You will immediately be welcomed with a “Bonjour”.

What is your favourite French saying?

More of an expression I would say “Saperlipopette”.

Which French-speaking destination would be your dream holiday?
Ouvea, one of the Loyalty Islands of New Caledonia, I wouldn’t mind getting lost there, away from everything. A long stretch of white sandy beach and blue clear water.

Spotlight on a Sponsor: TV5MONDE

To celebrate our fantastique 2018 Festival sponsors, we are continuing our ‘Spotlight on a Sponsor’ special on our blog to introduce the people behind the brand. This week, we are pleased to present our wonderful Silver Sponsor TV5MONDE.

Alexandre Muller, Managing Director of TV5MONDE Asia Pacific, sat down to answer our short questionnaire and give us some insight into the company.

What is your favourite thing about French culture? 

I absolutely love (almost) everything about French culture, not only because I am French! I must admit that I admire the “French Touch” which is synonymous for me of culture, heritage, quality, refinement, excellence, pleasure and Art de Vivre. It represents the French way of life, a legacy of the influence of France abroad that we are very proud to represent through the various TV5MONDE channels.

Which French films from the 2018 programme are you most looking forward to?

Considering this year’s very large selection, it is hard to choose just one. Nevertheless I have to admit that Back to Burgundy, by Cédric Klapisch is probably one of the best French movies I have seen in many years. I deeply recommend it and I am sure the public will be moved the same way as I was.

How does your company bring a French touch to New Zealand? 

TV5MONDE offers its own/unique French touch thanks to the programming of its regional channel TV5MONDE Pacifique, which casts the spotlight on contemporary and classic cinema, latest TV Series, exciting documentaries, lifestyle magazines, live sports events and youth programmes. On the other hand, we have recently created TV5MONDE Style, a channel entirely dedicated to the French Art of Living and refinement in all its forms. This includes fashion, jewellery, gastronomy, oenology, architecture, heritage and more. This channel is available upon subscription on TV5MONDE + Pacifique, online viewing service.

What is your favourite French saying?

The French language is full of expressions, with colours, food, body, music or animals. I like them all! If you want to learn more about those expressions “prenez le taureau par les cornes” (take the bull by the horns) and visit our website pacific.tv5monde.com under the “French Language” tab.

Which French-speaking destination would be your dream holiday?
I haven’t seen the movie Gauguin yet, but I am sure that Tahiti will be my French-speaking dream destination once I’ve watched it.

The 2018 Programme is Here!

“After months of preparation and many many film viewings, we are delighted to present you with a film programme that proves le cinéma français remains as innovative and surprising as ever. The films presented show the full range of creativity and originality that make France’s cinema scene one of the most vibrant in the world.

Our dramas, comedies, biopics, period films, melodramas, family films and documentaries will make you travel the world and experience other stories — en français évidemment!

We are excited to raise the curtain on 6 weeks of French film in 14 cinemas throughout New Zealand. Enjoy!” — Festival director Dorothée Basel.

With award-winning titles, numerous female-directed features, and essential comedies, the 12th edition of the Alliance Française French Film Festival promises something for everyone. We’ve highlighted a few must-see films below.

Iconic Artists
Films featuring bold visionaries, auteurs of cinema and iconic songstresses prove the arts are well and truly alive in the programme with biopics such as Redoubtable (Le Redoutable) by Michel Hazanavicius, Barbara by Mathieu Amalric and Rodin by Jacques Doillon taking centre stage.

Female Voices
As in previous years, the programme includes a strong focus on female directors and creative talent. First features by up and coming filmmakers will play alongside work from established names such as Anne Fontaine (Reinventing Marvin, Marvin ou la belle éducation), Claire Simon (The Graduation, Le Concours) and Lisa Azuelos (Dalida).

La Grande guerre
To mark the end of the centenary commemorations of the First World War, a special selection of films set around La grande guerre feature in the programme. Xavier Beauvois’ The Guardians (Les Gardiennes), Albert Dupontel’s See You Up There (Au revoir là-haut) and Emmanuel Courcol’s Ceasefire (Cessez-le-feu) provide unexpected and challenging views on WWI.

Special Events
Join us for a series of special events across the country to celebrate the very best of French cinema and culture. We have listed the highlights on our website, but stay tuned as we may be adding even more in the coming months! From wine and cheese tastings to our annual Soirée Francophonie, there is plenty to put in your calendar.

You can explore the full 2018 programme on the Films page, and get your copy of the print programme from Festival venues and your local Alliance Française following delivery. Tickets and 5 Trip Passes will be on sale through Festival screening venues in the coming days. For more information, head to our Ticketing Info page.

A très bientôt au cinéma!

Kate Rodger Shares her Picks of the Programme

There’s only one more week to wait until the full programme for the 2018 Festival is revealed, so we wanted to share one final sneak preview of what’s in store with the help of our Festival Patron. Kate Rodger has selected her top two films from the programme of more than 35 feature films, and we hope to see you enjoying them very soon at the cinema.

“There are few things greater on this earth than the feeling of being entirely transported by gifted storytellers, and for me, watching those stories unfold in a dark cinema on a big screen is my quiet addiction… So what a thrill to be asked to be Patron of this fabulous Alliance Française French Film Festival, merci merci! And please, don’t hesitate one moment longer, get thee to the cinema!” — Kate Rodger

Her notes on the films appear below.

Ava

There is nothing j’adore more than the exciting cinematic aroma of a new, emerging and enormous talent, and in Ava, inhaling the first feature of young female filmmaker Léa Mysius filled me with joy. This is a coming-of-age story told with an oftentimes confrontingly unique voice, intuitively cast and dripping with a brooding intimacy and intensity.

Ismael’s Ghosts (Les Fantômes d’Ismaël)

You’d be INSANE to let this opportunity pass you by, a chance to soak up three of France’s most gifted actors on the big screen. And what an unmitigated pleasure it is to watch Oscar-winner Marion Cotillard and César-winners Charlotte Gainsbourg and Mathieu Amalric face off with each other in a typically twisted and unpredictable love triangle. Fabulously French, this is everything you need in a big screen festival outing, bursting at the seams with passion, life, comedy and a healthy dose of madness (or is it?).

 

The full 2018 programme will be available online from 7pm on Thursday 8 February. We look forward to sharing the joy of French cinema with you from 1 March – 18 April 2018 in 13 cities across New Zealand.

Speaking of enjoying many films at the cinema, we are thrilled to announce that due to popular demand we will have a 5 Trip Pass available at select venues this year! Head to here for details.

Introducing our 5 Trip Pass

Due to popular demand, we are thrilled to announce that we will have 5 Trip Passes available for sale at select venues for the 2018 Festival!

You can watch more for less and make the most of the diverse programme as the pass will save you $10 off the price of 5 single Adult admissions. As this is our first year with the 5 Trip Pass, we will be have them available in limited numbers for the following venues:

Auckland – Rialto Cinemas Newmarket
Auckland – Berkeley Cinemas Takapuna
Christchurch – Hoyts Riccarton
Dunedin – Rialto Cinemas Dunedin
Havelock North – Event Cinemas
New Plymouth – Event Cinemas
Palmerston North – Event Cinemas
Wellington – Embassy Theatre

The 5 Trip Pass will be available to purchase from the screening venues above from 14 February and will be valid at the screening venue it is purchased from. For prices, visit the Ticketing Info page for your city.

Terms and conditions: Pass is valid for 5 tickets to 5 different festival films at AFFFF 2018 only. One ticket per session. Pass must be stamped and ticket issued to enter screening. Excludes opening nights, special events. Does not guarantee a seat in sold-out session. Not valid for online or phone bookings. Not transferable, non-refundable.

Opening and Closing Night Films Announced

With the 2018 programme safely in the hands of our printer, the final countdown is on to the launch of the Festival! As a further teaser of what’s in store, we are beyond excited to reveal our electric Opening and Closing Night films.

Launching in Auckland on 1 March, the 2018 Festival will open with the effervescent C’est la vie! (Le Sens de la fête) by Olivier Nakache and Éric Tolédano (The Intouchables, 2010). An entertaining look at a disastrous day in the life of a wedding planner, the lead role was written for and stars the legendary Jean-Pierre Bacri.

A brilliant comedy of errors, C’est la vie! will provide a grand opening night experience for audiences across the country.

Celebrating rich French talent and a diverse programme, the Festival will close with Mrs. Hyde (Madame Hyde) by Serge Bozon, a fantastic and surreal reinterpretation of Robert L. Stevenson’s literary classic The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Starring the iconic Isabelle Huppert as an eccentric science teacher who is struck by lightning while in the lab, this deadpan comedy blends the inspirational teacher genre, 1980’s science fiction and contemporary social criticism. Huppert was awarded Best Actress at the 2017 Locarno Film Festival for her brilliant performance. Screening exclusively as the closing night film, Mrs. Hyde is undoubtably a must-see.

“We feel honoured once again to present you with a diverse selection of some of the best contemporary French and Francophone cinema. Our Opening and Closing night films perfectly sum up what the Festival has to offer: innovative, exciting, moving and surprising cinéma français. Come along and enjoy!” says Festival director Dorothée Basel.

 

The full 2018 programme will be available online from Thursday 8 February and in print at screening venues from Friday 9 February. We look forward to sharing the joy of French cinema with you from 1 March – 18 April 2018 in 13 cities across New Zealand. Visit our Dates and Venues page for details.

Education Outreach Selection Revealed

Continuing our goal to fascinate, inspire, and educate, we are delighted to announce the line-up for the 2018 Education Outreach programme.

Learning a language is a way to understand our globalised world and expand cultural horizons. Cinema and film offer the perfect medium for an enjoyable language learning experience.
The Festival puts an emphasis on the importance of learning languages through its Education Outreach programme. The films selected are suitable for different ages and can be booked by schools for individual screenings during the Festival.

The 2018 Education Outreach films are:

French-language study guides for Belle & Sebastian: Friends for Life (Belle et Sébastien 3, le dernier chapitre) and Orchestra Class (La Mélodie) will be available to download free of charge from the Festival website following the full programme launch on Thursday 8 February. The study guides have been conceived by French teachers of the Alliance Française network in New Zealand, supported by ILEP.

For more information visit our Education Outreach page.