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Triple movie kick off for 34th Ghent International Film Festival

The 34th edition of the Ghent International Film Festival kicks off on Tuesday October 9 featuring not one but 3 movies. Closing the Ring, a very strong European première opens the section Festival Previews in the presence of Lord Richard Attenborough. The same evening the competition is launched with Die Fälscher by Stefan Ruzowsky and in Vooruit the section Almost Cinema is opened with Sand & Sorrow, a documentary about the Darfur genocide.

In Closing the Ring Lord Richard Attenborough tells us a story in two different time zones. It starts during WWII when 3 pilots fall in love with the same woman, Ethel. A few dozen years later, the truth comes to light when in Northern Ireland a boy digs up a ring in which are engraved the names of Ethel and one of the pilotes. He wants to know more… The movie stars Shirley Maclaine, Christopher Plummer, Neve Campbell and Mischa Barton. Lord Attenborough can look back on a vast career. He acted in about 70 movies (a.o. Jurassic Parc). The first movie he directed was the war musical Oh! What a lovely war. In total he directed 10 movies but peaked in 1982 when he delivered his masterpiece Ghandi, winning 8 Academy Awards. Lord Richard Attenborough was our esteemed guest in 2004 when he visited us as a Unicef ambassador and featured in “An Evening with…” at Arts Centre Vooruit. The festival warmly welcomes his Lordship once again along with the cast of Closing the Ring, which will come to our theatres in spring next year.

The competion opens with Die Fälscher, the Austrian candidate for the Academy Awards. The movie tells us the story of a huge and well organised counterfeiting in Nazi Germany. Salomon “Sally” Sorowitz, Berlin’s champion of forgery, is arrested by Nazi inspector Friedrich Herzog. His lovely life changes abruptly when he is sent to the Mathausen concentration camp. He is ordered to produce masses of false dollars and British Pounds to destroy the allies’ economies. In return for their favours the counterfeiters can live in comfortable barracks. Adolf Burger is one of them. But he is reluctant to use his talents for the benefit of the Nazis and tries to sabotage the operations whenever he can. Die Fälscher is based on Adolf Burger’s book Des Teufels Werkstatt. Ruzowitsky wanted to make as truthful a report as possible and so he worked closely with Burger himself, who celebrated his 90th birthday this year. Ruzowitsky made his debut in 1996 with the movie Tempo and then directed a.o. the horror movie Anatomy and the comical war movie All the Queen’s Men. In 1998 he won the Grand Prix for Best Movie at the Ghent International Film Festival with Die Siebtelbauern, a story about a farmer’s family.

The third opening movie is Sand & Sorrow. It will open the section Almost Cinema, a co-production with the Art Centre, Vooruit. Sand & Sorrow is about the Darfur Conflict, and is staged in the refugee camps by the Sudanese border and the mass graves of Darfur itself and even switches to the US Senate. Director Paul Freeman creates a shocking image of the sorrow of a people that stands to be destroyed due to political obstinacy and the shameful indifference of a world only watching. Actor George Clooney who insisted on getting this “forgotten conflict” on the agenda lends his voice to Sand & Sorrow and co produces.


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