»Crossing Europe«: The film festival is heading for an increase in visitors

»Crossing Europe«: The film festival is heading for an increase in visitors
The artistic directors Katharina Riedler (left) and Sabine Gottesroither with Isabella Friedl (winner Local Artists, center)
Image: Christoph Leeb/subtext.at/XE

The Linz film festival “Crossing Europe” ended last year with almost 15,000 visitors. As the directors said in the OÖN interview this afternoon, the 20th edition, which ends tonight (May 1st), is headed for an increase in visitors, which is particularly evident in a significantly increased capacity utilization in the festival cinemas . An improvement can be felt here compared to the 2022 edition, which was still heavily influenced by Corona.

“Visitors were very surprised that the cinemas at the festival were often and soon sold out and that it was difficult to get tickets if you were too close to deciding on a specific projection,” says co-director Sabine Gottesroither. It was reminiscent of relearning old festival practices, which was admittedly “very sweet” to watch. As festival visitors reported to OÖN, extra alarm clocks were set again so that it was soon enough to reserve desired films in the morning.

Risk of rediscovery that was worth it

Gottesroither: “This year we have included a great many new filmmakers in the program that we don’t know. That is definitely a risk. And then of course we are all the more pleased that the audience here trusted us so much and still watches the films.” Co-Artistic Director Katharina Riedler: “It was definitely a demanding program in terms of new directors’ discoveries and the explosiveness of the topics. And we don’t feel like anything has been left out by the audience.”

“Taking stock feels very good because, unlike last year, when the pandemic was even more noticeable, it was again about the essence of our festival: talking together in the cinema about the films shown and their topics. “

In view of multiple crises, the directors had put the 20th “Crossing Europe” under the motto “Europe, we have to talk!” This worked out very well, also with regard to the meeting and the lively exchange of the local cinema audience with the international industry guests. Gottesroither: “Both groups mixed up much better this year.” Riedler: “That confirms to us that the festival is a low-threshold event”. – also away from the festival cinemas (OK square, festival restaurants, discussion rooms).

The definitive number of visitors for 2023 will be announced tomorrow (May 2nd).

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: Nachrichten

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