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Four Italian Film Festivals in Autumn You Shouldn’t Miss

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Italy during the autumn months is a wonderful place to be. The rolling landscapes will be taking on the golden colors of fall, and the temperatures are dropping to a comfortable range compared to the heat of the summer months. Not to mention, food will also be in abundance as the harvest season arrives, and there will be a large number of food festivals happening within the country at this time. Also rather abundant in autumn in Italy are film festivals.

When it comes to film festivals, Italy is one place where you will find quite a few you can go to. The country hosts some of the biggest international film festivals in the world. Being able to attend one or more of these during the months of September to November is an experience you wouldn’t want to miss.

If you are into movies and would love to see some of the biggest stars in the industry converge in one of the many majestic cities of Italy, you should consider taking a vacation to these places when these film festivals are happening. Here are four of the more popular Italian Film Festivals that you should try to check out when you are in Italy in autumn:

Venice Film Festival

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Probably the most popular film festival in all of Italy, and definitely the oldest film festival in the world, the Venice Film Festival is an annual event that happens early September. It is held on the island of Lido. This film festival started in the early 1930s and is considered one of the Big Three in Europe, alongside the ones held in Cannes and Berlin.

People who attend this festival can enjoy screenings of the entries at the historic Palazzo del Cinema and in other similar venues nearby. Some of the awards that entries can win at this festival include the Golden Lion award, Silver Lion Award, and the Grand Jury Prize, to name but a few. Some of the popular Hollywood movies that received the Golden Lion award include Brokeback Mountain, The Shape of Water, and Monsoon Wedding.

Rome Film Fest


This film festival, which happens every year in October, is a pretty young festival when compared with other popular film festivals in Italy. Held in Rome’s Auditorium Parco della Musica and organized by the Fondazione Cinema per Roma, this festival features 35 films that will vie for one or more of the many awards given here. The Festival Internazionale del Film di Roma is an event that began in 2006 and has since become one of the more important festivals for film in the world.

World-famous artists attend this festival every year, with Hollywood actors making their appearances being one of the highlights of this event. The awards that are handed out during this festival are all People’s Choice Awards for the different sections that this event has. There is the Cinema d’Oggi (films by successful directors), Gala (world premiere films), Mondo Genere (different genre films), Prospettive Italia (trendy Italian films), and Alice nella Citta (children’s films).

Torino Film Festival

Torino Film Festival

Happening at the very end of the autumn season in Italy, this film festival takes place in the city of Turin, which is located west of the Po River. This international film festival was first introduced to the movie-going public in 1982 and is considered the second largest film festival in Italy, second only to the Venice Film Festival. This festival was put together to help an economically struggling Turin be recognized and to re-energize it both culturally and financially.

The festival has a few notable sections that include the Torino 35, which has feature films and documentaries, Festa Mobile, After Hours, and Onde, which are all non-competitive sections, and Italian Corti which is a short-film competition exclusively for Italian filmmakers. The awards that are presented at the end of the festival to the winning participants include Best Film Awards and Special Jury Awards for all competitive categories, and Best Actress, Best Actor, and Best Screenplay for the Torino 35 entries.

Milano Film Festival

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Happening at the end of September to the start of October, this film festival happens in Lombardia, in Milan. The festival usually lasts 10 days, and features independent films, giving new filmmakers the kind of support they need to get noticed. This festival began in 1996 and has since grown to such a massive scale that it now attracts over 100,000 participants annually. Screenings for the films that make the cut usually happen in various parts of the city, with squares, plazas, art galleries, and museums becoming movie theaters for this event.

Awards are handed out every year to films that are adjudged Best Film, alongside awards for Best Actress, Best Actor, and Best Director. Since the festival is for independent films, you won’t find any big-name stars here during the event, unless of course if some Hollywood A-lister decided to lend their talent to an independent director or screenwriter that they wanted to help.

So cinema aficionados, grab your passports, tickets, and passes (and popcorn… possibly truffle-flavored…) and come over to Italy for these exciting film events!

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By Priscila Siano (265 Posts)

+Priscila Siano is the Marketing Director of Tour Italy Now, an online tour operator specializing in Italy travel. She's a respected expert on making dream Italy vacations a reality for clients.

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