Montreal World Film Festival

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Montreal World Film Festival
Location Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Founded 1977
Film titles 400+
Hosted by Montreal World Film Festival Group
Language International

The Montreal World Film Festival (WFF) (French: le Festival des Films du Monde; alternative official name Montreal International Film Festival, not commonly used), founded in 1977, is one of Canada's oldest international film festivals and the only competitive film festival in North America accredited by the FIAPF (although the Toronto International Film Festival is North America's only accredited non-competitive festival). The public festival is held annually in late August in the city of Montreal in Quebec. Unlike the Toronto International Film Festival, which has a greater focus on Canadian and other North American films, the Montreal World Film Festival has a larger diversity of films from all over the world.[1]



The World Film Festival is organised in various sections:

  • World Competition (features and shorts)
  • First Films World Competition (features)
  • Out of Competition (features)
  • Focus on World Cinema (features and Shorts)
  • Documentaries of the World (features, medium-length films, shorts)
  • Tributes
  • Cinema Under the Stars
  • Student Film Festival (Canadian and international shorts)


Prior to the beginning of each event, the Festival’s board of directors appoints the juries who hold sole responsibility for choosing which films will receive the blessing of a WFF award. Jurors are chosen from a wide range of international artists, based on their body of work and respect from their peers.



  • Grand Prix des Amériques
  • Special Grand Prix of the jury
  • Best Director
  • Best Actress
  • Best Actor
  • Best Screenplay
  • Best Artistic Contribution
  • Innovation Award
  • Zenith Award for The Best First Fiction Feature Film, (Golden, Silver and Bronze)[2]
  • Short Films (1st Prize and Jury Prize)

In addition the festival-going public votes for the films they liked best in different categories:

  • People's Choice Award
  • Award for the Most Popular Canadian Film
  • Glauber Rocha Award for the Best Film from Latin America
  • Best Documentary Film Award
  • Best Canadian Short Film Award.

Grand Prix des Amériques winners

Year Film Original Title Director Country
1978 Ligabue Salvatore Nocita  France /  Italy
1979 1+1=3 Heidi Genée  West Germany
1980 The Stunt Man Richard Rush  United States
Fontamara Carlo Lizzani  Italy
1981 The Chosen Jeremy Kagan  United States
1982 Time for Revenge Tiempo de revancha Adolfo Aristarain  Argentina
1982 Brimstone and Treacle Richard Loncraine  United Kingdom
1983 The Go Masters Mikan no taikyoku Ji-shun Duan & Jun'ya Satô & Shu'an Liu  Japan /  China
1984 The North El Norte Gregory Nava  United States /  United Kingdom
1985 Our Father Padre nuestro Francisco Regueiro  Spain
1986 Betty Blue 37°2 le matin Jean-Jacques Beineix  France
1987 The Kid Brother Kenny Claude Gagnon  Japan /  United States /  Canada
1988 The Reader La lectrice Michel Deville  France
1989 Freedom Is Paradise S.E.R. - Svoboda eto rai Sergey Bodrov  Soviet Union
1990 Fallen from Heaven Caídos del cielo Francisco J. Lombardi  Peru /  Spain
1991 Salmonberries Percy Adlon  Germany
1992 The Dark Side of the Heart El lado oscuro del corazón Eliseo Subiela  Argentina /  Canada
1993 Betrayal Trahir Radu Mihaileanu  France /   Switzerland /  Spain /  Romania
1994 Once Were Warriors Lee Tamahori  New Zealand
1995 Georgia Ulu Grosbard  United States /  France
1996 Different for Girls Richard Spence  United Kingdom /  France
1997 Children of Heaven Bacheha-Ye aseman Majid Majidi  Iran
1998 The Quarry Marion Hänsel  Belgium /  France /  Netherlands /  Spain
Full Moon Vollmond Fredi M. Murer   Switzerland /  Germany /  France
1999 Color of Paradise Rang-e khoda Majid Majidi  Iran
2000 The Taste of Others Le goût des autres Agnès Jaoui  France
Innocence Paul Cox  Australia /  Belgium
2001 Rain Baran Majid Majidi  Iran
Abandoned Torzók Árpád Sopsits  Hungary
2002 The Best Day of My Life Il più bel giorno della mia vita Cristina Comencini  Italy /  United Kingdom
2003 The Cordon Kordon Goran Markovic  Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
2004 The Syrian Bride Ha-Kala Ha-Surit Eran Riklis  France /  Germany /  Israel
2005 Off Screen Kleisterlee Pieter Kuijpers  Netherlands /  Belgium
2006 A Long Walk Nagai sanpo Eiji Okuda  Japan
The Greatest Love of All O Maior Amor do Mundo Carlos Diegues  Brazil
2007 Ben X Nic Balthazar  Belgium /  Netherlands
A Secret Un secret Claude Miller  France
2008 Departures Okuribito Yôjirô Takita  Japan
2009 Freedom Korkoro Tony Gatlif  France
2010 Oxygen Adem Hans van Nuffel  Belgium /  Netherlands
2011 Come as You Are Hasta la Vista Geoffrey Enthoven  Belgium
2012 Where the Fire Burns Ateşin Düştüğü Yer İsmail Güneş  Turkey
2013 Life Feels Good Chce sie zyc Maciej Pieprzyca  Poland
2014 Perfect Obedience Obediencia perfecta Luis Urquiza  Mexico
2015 Mad Love Fou d'amour Philippe Ramos  France


The stated goal of the Montreal World Film Festival (Montreal International Film Festival) is to:

encourage cultural diversity and understanding between nations, to foster the cinema of all continents by stimulating the development of quality cinema, to promote filmmakers and innovative works, to discover and encourage new talents, and to promote meetings between cinema professionals from around the world.[3]

The president of the Montreal World Film Festival (WFF) is Serge Losique; its vice-president is Danièle Cauchard.[4] Losique's management has been controversial. The WFF lost the sponsorship of its previous government cultural funders, SODEC and Telefilm Canada as a result of disagreements with Losique in 2004. Subsequently, these two funding agencies announced that they would support a new international film festival, called the New Montreal FilmFest (FIFM), to be managed by Spectra Entertainment and headed by Daniel Langlois (of SoftImage and Ex-Centris and the Festival du Nouveau Cinéma). After the inaugural edition of that new festival was unsuccessful, it was abandoned early in 2006. As of July 2007, Losique's lawsuits against the funding agencies were dropped, paving the way for a restoration of government funding.[5]


According to a survey by Léger Marketing:[6]

  • Approximately 385,000 attended the 2008 World Film Festival. Of these, 323,352 (84%) were local filmgoers and 61,591 (16%) were out-of-town visitors.
  • Among visitors, 27% were less than 35 years old, 34% were 35 to 54 years old and 39% were more than 54 years old.
  • During their stay in the greater Montreal area, visitors attracted here by the Festival spent an average of $921.60. Visitors from outside the province spent on average twice as much as visitors from Quebec, and this money was spent specifically within the framework of their attendance at the Festival.
  • Tourist spending generated by visitors to the Montreal World Film Festival is estimated at $21 million.


In 2005, Losique first announced and later withdrew the film Karla from the WFF after the principal sponsor of the festival, Air Canada, threatened to withdraw its sponsorship of the festival if that film were included. The film — about Karla Homolka, a young woman who was convicted of manslaughter and who served twelve years in prison for her part in the kidnapping, sex-enslavement, rapes and murders of teenage girls, including her own sister, in a case said to involve ephebophilia — was controversial in Canada, with many calling for its boycott throughout the country.[7]

See also


  1. "TIFF-MWFF Filmfest fisticuffs, Montreal against Toronto". Archived from the original on August 18, 2010. Retrieved 2012-11-30. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Information from the home page. Cf. the "Manifesto" of the organization for its perspective and goals in the context of its account of its history.
  4. See "contact" links at the official website.
  6. "Attendance and economic benefits of the mwff". [1]. March 2008. External link in |publisher= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. See "Canadian Distributors to Release Homolka Film." CBC News 10 Jan. 2006, accessed 31 Aug. 2006.


External links

  • Official Website Festival des Films du Monde de Montréal (Montreal World Film Festival [Montreal International Film Festival])