Ibn Arabi International Film Festival, Murcia, Spain

Posted by By at 12 March, at 13 : 53 PM Print

Ibn Arabi International Film Festival, Murcia, Spain

The Third Edition of IBAFF (www.IBAFF.com), International Film Festival was held March 5th through 10th in Murcia, Spain.

Bahman Maghsoudlou served as the president and lone non-Spanish member of the jury, alongside a group of notables of the Spanish film scene, including professor and film scholar/critic Alberto Elena.

The Festival was inaugurated in 2010, and was named for Ibn Arabi, the philosopher, thinker and Andalusian Sufi mystic who was born in Murcia in 1165 (d: Damascus, 1240), whose work inspired the festival’s abiding theme of Travel and Creation. This year’s festival was another resounding success under the leadership of festival Director Marta Lopez Briones and festival President Mahmoud Reza Sani.


In the previous year, the Italian master of cinematography Vittorio Storaro and acclaimed Iranian director Majid Majidi were guests at the festival. This year Abbas Kia-Rostami, another great Iranian filmmaker, also renowned as a poet and photographer, conducted a workshop over a period of ten days in which he shared his experiences behind the camera with thirty-five young participants from many different countries.


At the end of the workshop, the trio of jurors – Mr. Maghsoudlou, Mr. Isaki Lacuesta (a young Spanish director who received the Golden Shell Prize at the San Sebastian Film Festival 2011 for his film The Double Steps) and Mr. Elena, who authored a book on Mr. Kia-Rostami – selected five of the thirty-five completed films for the next edition of the film festival in 2013.

The Official Section had three competition sections: features, shorts and documentaries. The seven films represented selections from Iran, Spain, Serbia, Argentina, Germany, Uruguay and one Spanish-Filipino co-production. The Serbian entry, Predrag Velinovic’s Motel Nana, received the Best Film Prize, while the Special Diploma went to Ignacio Oliva’s Nobody’s Rose from Spain.

Aside from the Official Section, this year’s IBAFF also consisted of the following:

Festival Showcase- Award-winning films from kindred festivals to IBAFF. This year featured films from the International Oberhausen Kurzfilmtage and the Punto de Vista Navarra Festival.

An Honorary Award Retrospective for Abbas Kia-Rostami.

The Film School Section- A new educational section designed to pass on knowledge to the next generation of filmmakers, this inaugural year featured films about the problems of contemporary youth assembled by the Hamburg Media School.

Cinema Scene, Film Panorama- A section dedicated to independent Spanish films that are pushing the envelope, including ones that cannot get screenings elsewhere.

Off Section- A non-competitive section offering films of strong thematic or stylistic value that, similar to those in Panorama, have not found any other showcase.

Small Screen- A special section dedicated to animated films for very young children, centered on the idea of teaching them to think about the way they watch things.

The festival also had a number of special events, including a symposium entitled ‘Ibn Arabi of Murcia,’ all about the philosopher whose work inspired the theme of Travel and Creation, and a concert of classical Flamenco by celebrated singer and composer Mayte Martín.



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