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After five successful editions, the ASFF faced an extraordinary situation in an unconventional year for cinema for its 6th edition. This year’s program branched between the virtual and the physical. To still bring Spanish cinema to the Netherlands, the SFF had from 27th April to 3rd May a very successful collaboration with Vitamine Cineville, an online platform created by Cineville. As our audience missed the opportunity to watch the Spanish cinema in May, we brought recent gems to their homes. This set the stage for our next Autumn edition, as it was visible (with around 3,000 views) that the public was still interested in watching Spanish Cinema.
The 6th edition of the Spanish Festival finally took place from 28th Oct to 17th Nov 2020: the physical edition of in Amsterdam was from 28th Oct to 1st Nov 2020. Due to this circumstance and the uncertainty of the next weeks, SFF collaborated again with Vitamine Cineville to have a hybrid format: in cinemas (28th October to 8th November) and online (11th to 17th November). The Spanish Film Festival in Rotterdam & The Hague was held from 9th to 15th Dec 2020.
All of this made this 6th edition a very special and different experience compared to the previous years. This is why the SFF team feels so honoured to have been able to host its 6th edition of the festival in Amsterdam, an anniversary full of the most exciting, funny and representative examples of contemporary Spanish Cinema.
The Amsterdam Spanish Film Festival 2020 took place from Wednesday 28 October to Sunday 1 November ‘La inocencia’ (2020), a fresh and luminous first feature by Lucía Alemany, was the opening film of this special edition with an exceptional video message of the filmmaker and the director of the festival On the 28th of Oct, this was the starting point of the festival, complying with the COVID-19 regulations of the Dutch government.
As part of several screenings, SFF had also a live-introducti- on and three live Q&As with Dutch-Spanish locally-based filmmakers: Isabel Lamberti, Rámon & Salvador Gieling, and Vanesa Abajo Pérez.
Once again we were pleased to be able to celebrate the Amsterdam edition in our main venue, the Pathé Tuschinski theatre, a prestigious cinema in Art Deco style in the center of Amsterdam. For the completion of the varied program and consistent to the different types of films and audience that SFF has, part of our program was also exhibited at Eye Filmmuseum, and the 4th of Novem- ber before 10 PM at LantarenVenster (Rotterdam) and Pathé Buitenhof (The Hague). Through this array of venues, we bring a wider selection of Spanish cinema, also attending to an audience who is interested in new directors or directors forging more independent paths.
During closing evening, festival director Virginia Pablos thanked the audience and sponsors through a video message shown on the big screen. And the film was introduced by the filmmaker through a pre-recorded video. In addition to this, the coordinator of the festival introduced the videos and thanked the audience for their support and their presence in these difficult times of COVID-19. Without the audience, the success of this 6th edition could not have been possible.
Due to COVID-19, the festival was different than in previous years. To prevent the transmission of the virus, social activities were limited. Despite these restraints, the festival committed to make the experien- ce a profound one including welcoming speeches for several of its films, intro- duction videos of the filmmakers, and live Q&As where the audience was able to ask their ardent questions to the filmmakers following the new COVID-19 measures.