Whether you’re a film fanatic or just like to dabble in the art of cinema, the annual Sitges Film Festival is one event you just can’t miss. Boasting the title of ‘the world’s number one fantasy film festival’, the Festival Internacional de Cinema Fantàstic de Catalunya, to give it its full name, is held in the usually quiet and picturesque coastal town of Sitges, just outside Barcelona.
Attracting audiences of all ages with its eclectic selection of presentations, exhibitions and screenings focusing on all things frightening and fantastic, the festival shows off the best in up-coming Spanish and International movies from the horror and fantasy genre.
WHEN: Thursday, October 3rd to Sunday, October 13th 2019
What’s New For 2019?
This year, the festival will pay special attention to films directed by women, particularly Mirrah Foulkes’ Judy and Punch from Australia, Jocelyn DeBoer and Dawn Luebbe’s comedy Greener Grass, which takes place in a world where everyone wears braces, and Braid, a troubling thriller directed by Mitzi Peirone.
The festival’s 52nd edition will also delve into the fantasy film genre from 1979 and rediscover films from the genre of Italian Science Fiction. This year, the festival’s film competition will honor the great Italian filmmaker Pupi Avati, creator of classics like Zeder or La casa dalle finestre che ridono, and award the New Zealand actor Sam Neill, for his lifetime achievement.
To commemorate the 40th anniversary of Mad Max, directed by George Miller, Sitges Film Festival 2019 will pay tribute to the most emblematic dystopian saga in film history, by putting the movie on its poster, a retrospective, and the festival’s official book. Another infamous film, the first installment of the Alien saga, also turns 40 this year, and Sitges 2019 will be screening the documentary Memory – The Origins of Alien, an investigation into the origins of Ridley Scott’s masterpiece.
Famous Faces and Awards
The Sitges Film Festival is not only the place to be for those looking to catch the latest in fantasy and horror cinema, but it is also a great event for those who wouldn’t mind rubbing shoulders with the rich and famous. Over the years the festival has been known to entertain the likes of Anthony Hopkins, Jodie Foster, George A. Romero, Cameron Diaz, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Robert Pattinson, John Cusack, and John Landis, just to name a few.
There are many movies to be shown across the 10 day event, as screenings are divided into 13 diverse fantasy-horror categories which include science fiction, comedies, animations and documentaries, so you’re sure to find something of interest to you.
What’s more, awards will be dished out to those newcomers showing signs of hot talent. By popular vote, the audience can also decide on the audience award for best fantastic genre feature film.
Walking Among the Dead
There are various parallel activities that run during the Sitges Film Festival, and one of the most popular is the Zombie Walk.
The Zombie Walk gives visitors the crazy yet memorable opportunity of dressing like the living dead and shuffling down the streets of Sitges. It’s totally free, and there is even a make-up zone to help you look a little less… alive.
If it’s not really your thing, but you still want to experience all the zombie action, head to the beach on the night of the walk and hit the free party on the sands. This year, the Zombie Walk will take place on Sunday 6th October.
For more information on tickets and a full schedule of events, visit the Sitges Film Festival Website.
You can also find the whole list of films at the festival here.