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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Film festival brings variety

    Ask Giulio Scalinger a question about film and you’ll get a 15-minute answer that covers the history of U.S. film festivals, the business of Hollywood filmmaking and his love of independent films.

    This is unsurprising since the answers were coming from the director of the 18th Annual Arizona International Film Festival.

    In the era of YouTube and the Hollywood mega-blockbuster, Scalinger, a former UA media arts professor, believes there’s room for festivals for independent filmmakers, even those from other countries.

    “”You have festivals that really want to honor a type of film … and we’re interested in independent films,”” Scalinger said.

    Looking through the festival’s program, and you’ll find a good mix of American films sandwiched between films from more than 25 countries. In addition to the international flavor of the festival, there are feature films and shorts from local filmmakers, some of whom are Tucson high school students.

    If the idea of reading subtitles sounds tedious, Scalinger offers this advice for festivalgoers.

    “”You don’t have to read every subtitle to get the gist of (a foreign film). … In a comedy, people are laughing and you’re missing dialogue. So does that mean you’re missing the film? No,”” he said.

    To Scalinger, an event such as the AIFF is a wonderful opportunity to fall in love with a language.

    “”You watch a French film and you think it’s the most amazing film because you’re listening to the language. And it could be a really bad film because you’re just enchanted – French sounds so good,”” Scalinger said. “”People would say, ‘What a masterpiece!’ If it was in English, we would say, ‘What an awful film!'””

    To address the economic situation, organizers are offering free admission to 13 festival screenings and programs.

    Ask Scalinger what movies festivalgoers should catch for the rest of the week, and he’ll look at you with a smile.

    “”That’s like having a family and somebody asks you, ‘Who is your favorite kid?'””

    Visit for more information on festival programs, schedules, locations and ticket prices.

    For WILDlife’s coverage of the AIFF, please visit

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