The 55th Taormina Film Festival will see seven world premieres in what has been described as its most ambitious programme to date.

The festival, held in Sicily, has also expanded to four venues after receiving to $414,993 (€300,000) of extra funding from the government.  It will run June 13 – 20.

Taormina will remain the main festival hub while Palermo will host a Young American Comedies retrospective focusing on US Studio fare, Syracuse will host a program called Brasile! and Palma di Montechiaro will feature a Strong Women retrospective.

The cities will be hooked up via satellite for Taormina’s opening night world premiere screening of Walt Disney’s The Proposal directed by Anne Fletcher and starring Sandra Bullock.

It will also see premieres of:

  • The Long Night (Al Lail Altawed)from Hatem Ali
  • Mystery? (Giallo? ) by Antonio Capuano
  • Corso – The Last Beat by Gustave Reininger
  • The Penalty by Ensieh Shah Husseini
  • Once Upon A Time In Seoul (Sonyeon – eun Woolj-anneunda) by Hyung-Joon Bae
  • Kelin by Ermek Tursunov from Kazakhstan.

Deborah Young, the festival’s artistic director, has also secured a handful international premieres to be screened across Taormina’s competitive, non-competitive and gala screenings including Todd Phillips’ The Hangover by Todd Phillips, Humpday by Lynn Shelton and Mark Waters’ The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past.

The festival will also have a focus on French cinema, including a retrospective and French Grand Gala on June 19. Actresses Catherine Deneuve and Dominique Sanda will receive a Taormina Arte Award, alongside Jessica Lang.


The Mediterranean Competition:

Jury - Laurent Cantet, Ari Folman and Aimee Mullins

Golger – The Shadowless by Umit Unal from Turkey

Camino by Javier Fesser, Spain

The Girl On The Train (La Fille Du RER) – Andrea Techine, France

Casanegra Di Nour – Eddine Lakhmari, Morocco

Zrubavel by Shmuel Beru, Israel (First work)

Khaltet Fawzia (Fawzya A Special Blend) by Magdy Ahmed Aly, Egypt.

The Long Night – Al Lail Altawedby Hatem Ali, Syria (WP)

Giallo ? – Mystery? By Antonio Capuano, Italy (WP)


The Beyond The Mediterranean competition:

Corso – The Last Beat by Gustave Reininger, USA (WP)

Sin Nombre, by Cary Fukunaga, USA-Mexico (International Premier)

At Any Second (In Jeder Sekunde)by Jan Fehse, Germany

The Penalty by Ensieh Shah Husseini, Iran (WP)

Eye Of The Storm (No Meu Lugar),by Edouardo Valente, Brasil.

Welcome to Sajjanpur by Shyam Benegal, India

Once Upon A Time In Seoul (Sonyeon-eun Woolji-anneunda) by Hyung-Joon Bae, Korea (WP)

Kelin by Ermek Tursunov, Kazakhstan, (WP)