International 'Love' Films Fest Begins in Bulgaria
The 21st edition of the International Film Festival "Love is Folly" began Friday evening in the Bulgarian Black Sea city of Varna.
The opening ceremony included the traditional red carpet walk of top Bulgarian movie stars, directors, producers and foreign guests in front of the Festival and Congress Center in the city.
The opening ceremony was hosted by the fest's artistic director, Alexander Grozev, an acclaimed film critic. The newly-elected Mayor of Varna, Ivan Portnih, was a special guest as the event is held under the patronage of the City Hall.
The award for overall contribution was bestowed to prominent Bulgarian movie director, Nikola Korabov, 85, who was met by the audience with thundering applause.
Awards for special contributions were handed to Italian megastar Fabio Testi and prominent independent movie director, American Rob Nillson, who are among the VIP guests and were present at the ceremony.
Nillson will also preside the jury. He will present 5 of his movies.
12 films will compete for the grand prize, while a total of 76 from France, Spain, Romania, Turkey, Lebanon, and China, among others, will be shown. This is the most movies in the entire fest's history.
For the first time this year, there are showings in the plenary hall of Varna's municipal administration building. Admission there is free and he program includes an Israeli-made documentary about the July 2012 terror attack in Bulgaria's Black Sea city of Burgas.
Also for the first time, the Varna fest has partnered with the Mons International Festival of Love Films in Belgium.
There will be several film panoramas titled "Festivals and Prizes," "On World Stages," and three separate ones focusing on Chinese, Palestinian and Belgic cinemas.
The event closes on September 5.
Tickets for the opening and closing ceremonies are sold for BGN 10, for all other showings – for BGN 5. There will be several free showings as well.
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