ROSKINO, with the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation, presents the annual Russian Film Festival, which aims to bring foreign viewers closer to the contemporary Russian cinematography ranging from feature films to documentary films and animation. The Russian Film Festival 2021 will continue the series of online festivals started in 2020, which took place in Australia, Mexico, Spain, and Brazil in collaboration with local online platforms. The RFF-2020 attracted more than 120,000 viewers and became the first online project in the history of the Russian film industry to target a wide international audience.
In 2021, the Russian Film Festival expands its geography. The festival starts in June with the first events scheduled on the Latin American platform Qubit (available in Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay) and with later events to take place in Kazakhstan, where they will be held together with the Russian online cinema Okko. The RFF-Kazakhstan will be the first online event dedicated to Russian cinema in the CIS. In July, the festival will move on to Asia, and, in South Korea, it will take place on the largest local platform Homechoice. The current reach of the festival also includes India, Azerbaijan, and Israel. As the RFF plans to become a traditional annual event, and this fall, the festival will go back to the RFF-2020 countries (Mexico, Spain, and Brazil).
The RFF program is aimed at the widest foreign audience. Viewers of each country will have a chance to see a selection of fiction, documentary, and animation films of recent years, awarded at Russian and foreign festivals, in their original language with subtitles.
Among the films participating in the Russian Film Festival 2021:
feature films: Dear Comrades by Andrey Konchalovsky, Conference by Ivan Tverdovsky, Frenchman by Andrey Smirnov, Doctor Liza by Oksana Karas, Silver Skates by Mikhail Lokshin, On the Edge by Eduard Bordukov, The North Wind by Renata Litvinova, A Dog Named Palma by Alexandr Domogarov Jr., Deeper! by Mikhail Segal, The Whaler Boy by Philip Yuriev, The Man from Podolsk by Semyon Serzin, Sputnik by Yegor Abramenko, Fire by Alexei Nuzhny, Text by Klim Shipenko, Has anyone seen my girl? by Angelina Nikonova;
animated: The Snow Queen, Three Cats and Space Dogs: Return to Earth;
for the first time, the program of the Russian Film Festival will include a documentary – Bears of Kamchatka. The Beginning of Life by Irina Zhuravleva and Vladislav Grishin.
The full geography and the program of the festival will be available on the website https://rff.online/
Svetlana Maximchenko, Head of the Cinematography Department of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation:
“Interest in foreign films is growing all over the world today, and the leading international markets are paying close attention to the content produced by our film industry. It is important to keep up with this trend and develop a system of support for domestic cinema abroad. We are already producing content that is relevant and in demand at international festivals. The Russian Film Festival, which was successfully launched during the pandemic last year, aims to become one of the key mechanisms for promoting our industry. Now, we have substantially expanded the festival’s geography, opening new advancement opportunities for our filmmakers. We hope that the festival will continue to attract interest in Russian cinema worldwide".
Evgenia Markova, the CEO of ROSKINO:
“The Russian film industry has made impressive gains over the last few years. Now our goal is to introduce our projects not only to representatives of the industry, including content buyers and producers, but also to the end viewer by sparking an interest in Russian cinematography. That’s why we have put together a program of films created by iconic film directors and studios. It includes blockbusters, art films, and Russian animation that has been popular for a long time. We consider the Russian Film Festival as a way to analyze regional markets and to spread the word about Russian projects and talents. I thank all of our Russian and foreign partners for the support of this initiative".
Leonid Vereshchagin, 3T Studio CEO, producer:
“The Russian film industry has long been striving for a global event such as the Russian Film Festival. We are glad that two grand high-budget films from our studio — Fire and Silver Skates — have been included in the festival program. These are large-scale spectacular projects which are unique for Russia in their complexity of production. In Fire, for example, as in previous Studio films, we set out on a path that is largely unknown to contemporary domestic film production. Nobody in recent years has shot such massive fires. We had to develop a lot of things from scratch and it was not easy to shoot. Our projects have sparked great interest among international buyers – the blockbuster Fire has already been sold to the USA, France, Germany, Italy and the Middle East, while Silver Skates was released under the Netflix Originals brand. We hope that the Russian Film Festival audience will appreciate our films and that the launch of the RFF will become another tool to make Russian cinema more popular and recognized abroad”.
Fedor Bondarchuk, Art Pictures Studio founder, director, producer:
“Recent years have shown that spectators strive for unique plots and, in particular, stories from Russia. I can see this trend both as a director and as a producer of Egor Abramenko’s Sputnik, which was #1 on American iTunes and has been sold to more than 40 countries. An increasing number of colleagues from abroad are showing interest in Russian film production. They look at us , when start searching for authentic and new voices.
The RFF initiative is the most appropriate response to further stimulate global interest. It’s a huge achievement that this initiative didn’t die out with the pressures from the pandemic but only grew stronger and wider. We talk a lot about lifting borders as part of the universal globalization process. The RFF is doing more than just expanding borders — it’s building bridges all over the world and giving a chance to the foreign audience to connect and see our movies. And I’m grateful to the festival team for that”.
Yuriy Borisov, actor:
“It makes me very happy that our world has no boundaries and that art can unite people! And whatever happens, we can still keep on watching a variety of films in different languages, on different topics. Thanks to projects like the RFF, we can learn from each other’s experiences, meet online, contribute to developing the Russian cinema industry, develop personal growth, share our impressions and emotions, explore new horizons, faces, and names. Cinema has no boundaries! Sending my greetings from Russia, wish you to watch good movies!”
ROSKINO is a government organization that represents the Russian audiovisual content industry on international markets; it is the national operator for the promotion of films, TV series, and animation, as well as for expanding the reach of the domestic creative potential and co-production opportunities with Russia. The company also acts as an industry expert and conducts special educational programs for talented Russian producers, directors, and actors. Roskino promotes Russian content in key international markets and festivals and organizes festivals of Russian films abroad under the Russian Film Festival brand.