Sardinia is an Italian island located in the geographical centre of the Mediterranean, it’s long history has seen conquest and invasion, from the Romans to the Phoenicians, the Visigoths, Vandals and Saracens have also tried to conquer this fiercely independent island. Well, in 2015 a new seaborne invasion is expected to make landfall in Sardinia, when the ‘Gadgies’ of the Edinburgh Short Film Festival arrive, bearing the gift of short film!
In a world where culture and cultural packaging can be uniform, corporatized and institutional, it’s refreshing to find film events where screenings are held al fresco, cinema-paradiso style. The squares are packed for their late evening, piazza-style screenings, where short films are washed down with copious quantities of the local vino while the crickets gently chirrup from the Cicada trees. With it’s fine climate and stunning natural locations as well as many picturesque towns and villages, Sardinia has been the background to feature films ranging from the much-loved ‘Padre Padrone’ by the Taviani Brothers to Antonioni who shot his feature ‘The Red Desert’ here in 1977. Bond fans will also recognize the Sardinian coastline from ‘The Spy Who Loved Me’ while Francis Ford Coppola shot his 1979 film ‘The Black Stallion’ here, taking advantage of some the island’s exotically picturesque beaches and white sands.
Founded in 2006 as a means of expressing Sardinia’s love of film, the Sardinian Film Festival is based in Sassari in North West Sardinia, a short drive from the island’s fabled Emerald coast. It’s main aim is to promote European and International cultural exchange through film, encourage Independent European film-making and hold workshops, seminars, Q & A sessions and industry events. They also hold a massive 10,000 film video archive the Cineclub Mediateca and each year open a media marketing room complete with multimedia facilities for the duration of the festival.
2015 will be the tenth year for the Sardinian Film Festival and we are very much looking forward to our collaboration with the festival this year. The link is important to us, partly because both Scotland and Sardinia share a fiercely independent culture and history and because we have a shared love of landscape and an abiding love of cinema, where our peoples have gathered to discuss film, dissect issues and generally chew the fat in the bars and cafes after the film reels have stopped turning, long into the night.
For 2015 we will be preparing one programme of ESFF short films for the Sardinia audience and the Sardinia Film Festival will be curating a night of Sardinian and Italian short film for our festival and we are looking forward to screening those in November this year!