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TIFF – The Inigo Film Festival

"The cinema enjoys a wealth of languages, a multiplicity of styles and a variety of narrative forms that are truly great: from realism to fable, from history to science fiction, from adventure to tragedy, from comedy to news, from animated cartoon to documentary. It thus offers an incomparable storehouse of expressive means for portraying the various areas in which the human being finds himself and for interpreting his inescapable calling to the beautiful, the universal and the absolute." (John Paul II.)


The Jesuits are pleased again to announce the 4th “Iñigo Film Festival” for short films at the World Youth Day 2013 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Entries are accepted in the following categories: narrative fiction, animated and documentary on the general theme of "City of God". A wide variety of interpretations of this topic is expected and encouraged.


For example, submissions are welcomed:

- that reflect the spiritual yearnings and experiences of young people today;

- that show the presence and/or absence of God in our modern secularized world;

- that take into account the twin dimensions of faith and justice.

The ‘Iñigo Awards’ will be given to the three best short films. There will be a first prize of EUR 2.500, with a second and third prize of EUR 1.500 and EUR 1.000 respectively. There will be two additional Awards: one to a film chosen by the audience, “The Audience Award” (non-monetary), and “The Fidel Goetz Emerging Film-Maker Award”, which includes FCP Studio Pro and a stipend for the Festival. Each prize is accompanied with a professional software bundle by Showbiz (Budgeting, Scheduling & Producer)


TIFF Inigo Film Festival Director's interview on


How long has the festival been going, and why not make it an annual event?

I started TIFF in 2005. Every film festival has two challenges: who is going to watch your films (audience) and the huge expenses of having everything screened in 35mm. We connected TIFF with the World Youth Day - which runs every three years in a different big city in the world, which would give us the largest worldwide international young audience. During our screenings we are overrun by young people. With digital projection, we got rid off the expenses and limitation of 35mm film prints - because TIFF wants to reach young film makers - which normally do not have a big budget.


What problems did you have to deal with mostly in the past?

I am based in Munich, Germany. To organize a Festival in a different country "far far away" is quite challenging.  Our first TIFF went rather smoothly, because it was in Cologne, Germany. The second time we went to Sydney, Australia. Just the transport of the heavy Award Statues was quite expensive and took a long time. This year TIFF is in Madrid - which makes it much easier than Sydney, but still the Spanish way of dealing with the demands of a  Film Festival is sometimes confusing :-).


What is your biggest challenge this year?

Because of the world wide financial crises, fundraising was quite tough.


Do you see a raise in filmmakers consciousness making more films that matter and speak to the soul rather than to the guts

It's amazing to see how great the variety of submissions is - from animation to documentaries and fiction films. I am impressed about the care of young people about "real" things and existential questions. Film is a perfect media to tell it and we want to give it to a big audience.


Do you think religious communities provide best word of mouth  potential, how do you rate the success and impact of God and Men?

I think it matters what values people share. To be a community is one of the important experiences and "features" of any faith community. Thus yes, I think they have a great word of mouth potential. We have about one billion Catholics - it's hard to top :-) A different question is, how to reach all those people with their different languages and cultures. I think religious questions and challenges are important for everybody, what matters in your life? What is the meaning of your life? Different religions give different answers - everybody is invited to make its own free choice.


What is your best film success story (from your festival experience)

One Award went to a film maker from Sri Lanka. We could fly him to Germany, where he was a great contribution to TIFF. Back home, our prize gave him a great boost in his career as a film maker. This time, we got more films from Sri Lanka.

And there are similar stories, e.g. a group of young homeless kids from the Bronx (NY) made a wonderful visual compelling film - they won 3rd prize in

2005 - and because of this the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops entrusted them to make a movie about vocations.


What was Pope John Paul II view on the industry and role of cinema?

Pope John Paul II appreciated cinema as a way of finding and searching God in all things. He said:  "The cinema enjoys a wealth of languages, a multiplicity of styles and a variety of narrative forms that are truly great. It thus offers an incomparable storehouse of expressive means for portraying the various areas in which the human being finds himself and for interpreting his inescapable calling to the beautiful, the universal and the absolute. "


How can you describe the Festival's mission?

THE INIGO FILM FESTIVAL (TIFF) is an international celebration of films on topics of faith and spirituality, taking place on World Youth Day in Madrid, Spain.

TIFF showcases short films made by filmmakers under age 35, covering a wide variety of interpretations on Festival's theme: "City of God." The Festival seeks filmmakers who successfully integrate their religious, spiritual, and social themes with the resources of film as a modern artistic medium.


A message that I would want to communicate to filmmakers?

Be creative and work on your vision - and submit your film. The creative idea matters most rather than the technical side.

Christof Wolf, S.J. - Festival Director -

Fest directors talking to Bruno Chatelin








TIFF - The 3rd Inigo Film Festival

August 16 - 19, 2011 in Madrid during WYD Sponsored by the Conference of European Provincials of the Jesuits




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