Wim De Witte named program director of Film Fest Gent

News 09 Jan 2019
Film Fest Gent presented the 45th edition of the festival in October 2018. It offered a program with a fine selection of high-quality films, including the opening film 'Girl' and the winner of the international jury 'Cold War' (now in theatres), but also with a lot of 'smaller' films ('First Reformed', 'Hotel by the River', 'Long Day's Journey Into Night') and a series of rediscoverable classics (with a Tribute to the Hungarian director Miklos Jancso). The music section which, in addition to the World Soundtrack Awards Gala, also presented the first edition of Videodroom in collaboration with Vooruitand a series of film music industry events for an international group of young composers, was very well received. The program received a lot of attention of press and public, both nationally and internationally. The festival welcomed 106.013 visitors in its 2018 edition.

In the meantime, the team is working on the 46th edition in a slightly modified structure. Wim De Witte, strongholder of the festival for years, will be program director from 2019 onwards. He worked for the festival since he graduated and has been responsible for several departments. Since 2000 he is part of the programming team.

Claire Tillekaerts, chairman of the board of directors, is pleased that Wim has accepted the assignment. "The choice for Wim guarantees, in view of the important contribution he has made in recent years to the realization of the program, that we can further expand the ambition for the festival on what the festival stands for today."

Patrick Duynslaegher, artistic director of the festival since 2011, turned 65 and he retires at his own request. He remains involved in the music program and will also further develop the Classics program and the Talkies as a film consulant.

Patrick Duynslaegher: "I have been given the opportunity to give shape to seven festival editions together with a passionate team and I keep the very best professional memories of this, in particular my close collaboration with Wim De Witte. I had decided from the beginning that I would quit my artistic career at the age of 65. Of course this happens with a certain heartache, but also in the conviction that with Marijke Vandebuerie as managing director and Wim De Witte as program director, Film Fest Gent has a bright future and it can further strengthen its position as the largest cinefile event in Belgium. I am therefore looking forward to being able to contribute in a less intense collaboration to future festival editions and to the extensive year-long projects of Film Fest Gent."

Marijke Vandebuerie, general director of the festival, is pleased that the festival can keep working together with Patrick, who is a living legend in the field of film (art) and who knows how to convey his love for cinema like no other.

The 46th Film Fest Gent runs from 8 until 18 October 2019 in Kinepolis Ghent, Studio Skoop, Sphinx Cinema, Vooruit, KASKcinema and Capitole. More information: www.filmfestival.be