On Sunday evening, 3200 spectators watched Asteroid City (d. Wes Anderson, 2023) in Piața Unirii in Cluj-Napoca, marking the end of another spectacular edition of the Transilvania International Film Festival (June 9 - 18). Of the 350 screenings and events prepared by the organisers, over 100 were sold out. With an 8% increase compared to last year, Transilvania IFF.22 sold 110,000 tickets. The free admission activities in Floresti, dedicated to children and parents, the masterclasses given by the festival's special guests - Geoffrey Rush, Oliver Stone, Timothy Spall and Michel Franco - the daily meetings with actors and directors in the TIFF Lounge, and the exhibitions at the Museum of Art, all contribute to the final tally: 125,000 participants.
In the top 5 of the most watched productions of the festival, Asteroid City is joined by Northern Comfort (dir. Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurosson), Casablanca (dir. Michael Curtiz), Freedom (dir. Tudor Giurgiu) and Another Lottery Ticket (dir. Paul Negoescu). TIFF Picnic, which took place at the “Romulus Vuia” Museum of Ethnography, was also a great success. Among the sold-out events were the cine-concert A Bomb Was Stolen (dir. Ion Popescu-Gopo), the Moldovan film Carbon (dir. Ion Borș), which also won the Audience Award, the Spanish films Upon Entry (dir. Alejandro Rojas, Juan Sebastián Vasquez) and Stories Not To Be Told (dir. Cesc Gay) or the Romanian films MMXX (dir. Cristi Puiu) and Eagles from Țaga (dir. Adina Popescu, Iulian Ghervase). Among the concerts of the edition, electronic music pioneers Tangerine Dream gathered the most spectators.
The screening of the film Shine (d. Scott Hicks), with the participation of actor Geoffrey Rush, was warmly applauded by a full house:
“It's been a great week for me. The people at the festival have been generous in every way. I'm very grateful for the screening of Shine, I haven't had such a warm welcome in a long time. My connection with Romania began when I decided to translate Exit the King, a play by Eugen Ionesco in which I played and that won me many awards. And now, the fact that I am here, in Ionescu's homeland, is the crowning of this relationship. The audience and all the Romanians I met, starting with the plane that brought me to Cluj, were warm and welcoming. Two girls even thought I was the King of England. Who am I to argue with them?” Rush said on stage at the gala.
The organisers also announced the dates for the 23rd edition of Transilvania IFF, which will take place from the 14th to the 23rd of June 2024 in Cluj-Napoca. Until then, TIFF films can be seen at other festivals around the country: at Sunscreen Film & Arts Festival in Constanța (17 - 20 August), TIFF Sibiu (7 - 10 September) and TIFF Oradea (29 September - 1 October).
Images, footage and interviews from Transilvania IFF.22 can be found on the festival's YouTube channel or social media channels.