New Zealand International Film Festival Has Announced Dates, Locations and a New Artistic Director for 2024

Under Paolo Bertolin, this year's NZIFF will screen in four cities, hitting Wellington, Auckland, Dunedin and Christchurch.
Sarah Ward
Published on February 15, 2024
Updated on February 15, 2024

One of the many great things about film festivals is that each year brings a new round. So, now that 2024 is a month and a half in, it's time to start looking forward to this year's Whānau Mārama: New Zealand International Film Festival. The fest has announced its first details for the upcoming event, which will return in winter as usual, but with a few changes. This'll be a more-condensed version of NZIFF, and have a new Artistic Director at the helm.

In 2024, the film festival is only making four stops. It'll debut in Wellington, then hit Auckland, Dunedin and Christchurch. This is a considerably smaller footprint than in 2023, when NZIFF screened in 17 places. In each city, the number of cinemas that the fest is screening in has also been reduced. And, so has the number of days at each stop, making for a shorter event as well.

In Wellington, the festival will run from Wednesday, July 31–Sunday, August 11, with The Embassy, Roxy Cinema and Light House Cinema Cuba its venues. It'll then arrive in Auckland the following week, screening from Wednesday, August 7–Sunday, August 18 at The Civic, Hollywood Avondale and ASB Waterfront Theatre.

Dunedin gets its turn a week later, at The Regent Theatre from Wednesday, August 14–Sunday, August 25. And at Lumière Cinemas in Christchurch, NZIFF's longest 2024 leg will take place across Thursday, August 15–Sunday, September 1.

Movie lovers in Hamilton, Matakana, Tauranga, Napier, Masterton, Whangarei, Havelock North, New Plymouth, Palmerston North, Gisborne, Nelson, Timaru and Gore, you won't have NZIFF playing locally in 2024.

"After a challenging few years navigating a number of significant impacts, we've had to adapt the festival to ensure its future viability," the festival team noted in its announcement about this year's dates and venues, and its new Artistic Director.

"We sincerely thank you for your support of the festival and we hope to return to a cinema near you in the future," it said, as directed to folks whose town or city won't be visited by the fest this year.

As for what movie lovers will be seeing, it's too early for program details — but Paolo Bertolin, a film festival programmer, film critic and producer, is making the choices. He joins NZIFF with experience from Venice International Film Festival, Cannes' Directors' Fortnight, Locarno Film Festival, Doha Film Institute, Mumbai Film Festival and Nyon Visions du Réel.

"I feel deeply honoured by this appointment as Artistic Director of the New Zealand International Film Festival. It is an inspiring professional challenge, and I am excited to engage with audiences in Aotearoa in creating a program that shares with them the riches of contemporary cinema," Bertolin said

"This opportunity feels especially meaningful to me because my earliest and fondest cinephile memories include the enchantment of viewing early Jane Campion short films on the Italian PBS back in 1989, as well as being dazzled by the rapturous discovery of Peter Jackson's Heavenly Creatures at the 1994 Venice International Film Festival. I feel truly enthused to work with and for New Zealand audiences and filmmakers exactly on the 30th anniversary of Heavenly Creatures and of Lee Tamahori's Once Were Warriors."

Whānau Mārama: New Zealand International Film Festival 2024 Dates and Venues:

Wednesday, July 31–Sunday, August 11 — The Embassy, Roxy Cinema and Light House Cinema Cuba, Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington
Wednesday, August 7–Sunday, August 18 — The Civic, Hollywood Avondale and ASB Waterfront Theatre, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland
Wednesday, August 14–Sunday, August 25 — The Regent Theatre, Ōtepoti Dunedin
Thursday, August 15–Sunday, September 1 — Lumière Cinemas, Ōtautahi Christchurch

Whānau Mārama: New Zealand International Film Festival will run from July–September 2024. For more information, head to the festival website.

Published on February 15, 2024 by Sarah Ward
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