International Film Festival Bratislava was established in 1999 when it took over the baton from its predecessor, Forum International Film Festival whose beginnings date back to early 1990s. During the 18 years of its existence, it has earned a prominent place among domestic film festivals and other cinema events and developed a stable base of festival-goers. Every year it provides a platform for inspiring meetings of cinema laymen, aficionados and professionals from Slovakia as well as abroad. Its principal ambitions include cultivating the domestic film audience and adding an international context to Slovakia’s film culture.
Ever since its inception, the Bratislava film festival strove to develop the identity of a young festival – an event whose mission is to discover new names of contemporary cinema that seem to be well on their way toward becoming future stars of the silver screen. Our triplet of international competitions deliberately directs the spotlight to filmmakers whose feature, documentary and short debuts or second films have managed to impress the world of cinema with a sense of urgency and invention.
We also consider an inventive and independent dramaturgy to be our festival’s forte, which is why many of its programme sections are carefully composed by section curators. This allows us to keep abreast with the hottest trends, respond to issues that have taken the world around us by storm or introduce concrete subjects to the public discourse.
The Bratislava IFF has been conceived as a standard film festival of the urban type. Our goal is to develop this concept further, purposefully profiting from the position and panache of the capital city and cashing in on its status as the centre of creativity, culture and – yes, cinema! The Bratislava film festival is the largest and the single most important international cinema event in Slovakia’s capital and has earned a stable place in the calendar of its most prominent cultural events.