Intro: Festivals & Awards
The Vilnius International Film Festival
One of the most beautiful cities in the Baltics is the home of this brave, brainy and accomplished young film festival. To an unusual degree Vilnius has worked in mutual support with other film events in eastern and central Europe, taking a cultural leadership role among the filmmaking nations of the former USSR.
Movies Have a Memory
Well, movies have archives but the screen itself has no memories except the ones an intelligent audience chooses to bring to it. The American Cinema Foundation is committed to remembering, to recognizing achievement with a conscience. Since 1994 ACF has conducted gala screenings and tribute events for all sorts of good work in film and television, but our major interest has always been the fictional depiction of current events and the major turning points of the twentieth century. History on screen will always be close to the heart of the ACF mission. The Wajda Prize in Berlin and the first classic version of the Freedom Film Festival are themselves a part of history now, and many of the countries where we held its screenings are secure and even prosperous.
The Freedom Film Festival made its reputation in the late nineties and the early years of this century presenting films from the ex-Iron Curtain countries of eastern and central Europe. Freedom Film Festival screenings in Berlin, Moscow, Karlovy Vary and Baku received the cordial endorsement of Jack Valenti and the Motion Picture Association of America. For information on the films of individual years of the FFF, just roll over the info bar above.
The first ACF award presented to Andrzej Wajda himself in 1999, the tenth year anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, became an annual prize given in Mr. Wajda's name to filmmakers of outstanding artistic merit, civic courage and commitment to freedom, presented in east Berlin. In 2006 the city and film festival of Berlin fulfilled its role as the emblematic meeting point of East and West by awarding the Berlin International Film Festival highest award to Mr. Wajda.
Since those founding days, consumed with the aftermath of one particular 150 year old European experiment in universal utopia, Freedom Film Festival interests have varied, presenting film, internet and television events as well as the occasional special screening witnessing the quest for freedom in other parts of the world.