The Edinburgh International Film Festival is advertising for a new “dynamic and innovative” artistic director following criticism of the 2011 edition.
The Edinburgh International Film Festival is to reinstate the Michael Powell Award for its 2012 edition, according to a statement released on behalf of the EIFF board today.
The statement described the Michael Powell Award for best new British feature film, which was controversially scrapped for the 2011 edition to the dismay of many in the industry, as a “major asset” confirming that “after our unique 65th birthday celebrations we will continue our tradition of recognizing and rewarding excellence with this award.”
It also gave a clear indication that the festival could be considering a move back to August saying that “industry views regarding the dates of the festival are being taken into consideration and a decision will be made in due course.”
Many in the industry feel that the EIFF has suffered as a result of its move from August (when it ran alongside the Edinburgh International Festival and the Fringe) to June in 2008 as part of a three-year funding deal with the UKFC, with overriding support from the industry for a move back to August.
In response to criticism about the 2011 line-up, the statement referred to the EIFF as a “major cinephile festival” promising that the 2012 edition would “reflect the Festival’s 65year-long commitment to celebrating the art of film making.”
It added that feedback on EIFF 2011 “will be taken into consideration in the planning of future Festivals,” but that “no further comments” would be made at this stage.
The statement has been released following wide industry and press criticism for the 2011 edition, which closed on June 26.
There was no mention of the board’s plans to appoint a new artistic director, although an advert for the post has gone up on the EIFF website. The job description calls for a “a dynamic and innovative individual” who should have “knowledge and appreciation of our radical, innovative and international past yet possess clarity of vision that will chart our future creative path.”
Current festival director James Mullighan told Screen that he intends to apply for the job.