FESTIVALS: Valletta Film Festival to Expand Small Nations Concept

    Oliver Mallia Oliver Mallia

    VALLETTA: The Valletta Film Festival, which launched a Cinema of Small Nations Competition for feature and short films this year, has plans to expand its Valletta Film Forum from the Maltese film industry to small countries as well.

    “The idea behind the Cinema of Small Nations Competition at the Valletta Film Festival started few years back following a conference that we held at the festival. It became apparent then that there isn’t a festival that focuses on promoting the cinema of small nations and we felt that the Valletta Film Festival could fit this role”, Oliver Mallia, the director of the Valletta Film Festival told FNE.

    “The first edition of the competition attracted over 300 submissions and we were really delighted with the level of the selected projects. We’re now focused on further promoting this strand among the eligible countries and we’re also looking at expanding the industry events at the festival to focus more on the needs of small nations”, Mallia also said.

    The Valletta Film Festival, which took place this year from 14 to 23 June, also organised the first edition of the Valletta Film Forum, a one-day event focusing on the Maltese film industry and attended mainly by Maltese professionals. According to Oliver Mallia, “the scope is to expand the forum to discuss the audiovisual landscape of various small nations”.

    The Film Grain Foundation, the private foundation behind the Valletta Film Festival, also launched the Valletta Film Lab in March 2019. This training and development platform is open to filmmakers from Malta and small nations around Europe. The first edition focused on documentaries, while the second edition set for November 2019 will concentrate on fiction films.