Viennale 2015 – Vienna International Film Festival
300 films from all genres in 14 days
At the end of October, in downtown Vienna’s cinemas, an internationally oriented festival with urban flair will take place again this year. The festival will have guests from Austria and abroad and over 96,000 visitors are expected. The 53rd VIENNALE, held from October 22 through November 5, 2015, Is Austria’s largest international film festival as well as one of the highest-quality film festivals in Europe. It is an audience festival for a broad public interested in cinema, as well as a high-level current status report on film culture. This combination makes the Viennale unique.
Viennale – from 1960 to today
Sigmund Kennedy © Viennale
In the 1950s, Austria was a film wasteland: domestic production consisted of theater comedies, droll peasant stories, tourism films, Viennese musical comedies and spectacle films by Franz Antel – an impenetrable Silver Forest that reached all the way to the horizon and an historic all-time low of Austrian film culture. A group of Austrian film journalists, among them the later Viennale directors Sigmund Kennedy and Edwin Zbonek, sought to change this, and on their own initiative and without the support of public money they presented an “International Festival Week of the Most Interesting Films of the Year 1959” in 1960 – the primordial cell of the Viennale.
Don Siegel © Viennale
In the ensuing years, the event was held under the title “Festival of Cheerfulness” and focused on comedies, probably also to escape the accusations of procommunist agitation that were sometimes expressed in the media. It was not until 1968 that the Viennale began gaining in importance. It integrated the much-praised retrospectives of the Austrian Film museum and was generally undergoing an expansion. At the end of the 1980s, a model was developed under Helmuth Dimko into which the festival continues to fit today: a comprehensive, well-selected main program with the best films from the preceding production year, in addition to side attractions, small retrospectives and special programs, distributed over numerous cinemas throughout the city. This structure for the Viennale has proven itself to the present day, although the emphasis has shifted from time to time.
Gartenbaukino © Robert Newald
If you consider its entire history, the Viennale is a veritable success story, a successful work of art in which both the selection of films and the number of viewers continue to increase without relativizing the explicit demand for quality in terms of content and aesthetics. The Viennale has thus become the favorite festival for many critics as well as for the large public.
(Quote/text: Thomas Miessgang)
The program – great cinema
The Viennale presents a lively and culturally high-quality expedition on film through world cinema. In its main program, the Viennale shows a selection of new films from all different countries, national and sometimes international premieres, examples throughout the festival of lively cinematography that is aesthetically forward and current politically. In addition to the comprehensive current feature film productions in all forms, genres and means of storytelling, the festival pays special attention to documentary cinema, international short films, as well as experimental crossover works. For many directors, the Viennale represents the only possibility to show their works in Austria, since very few films make their way to regular showings at commercial movie theaters.
Tributes, special programs and retrospectives
The festival’s main program will be complemented by select tributes and special programs dedicated to significant personalities (e.g., Tippi Hedren), genres or topics of international cinema. In addition, the 2015 Viennale will again present a comprehensive historical Retrospective in conjunction with the Austrian Film Museum.
With a comprehensive supporting program of discussions, lectures and artistic interventions, as well as exhibitions and concerts, the festival is simultaneously a place for discussion and reflection. Festivals, celebrations of premieres, music events, as well as DJ lines and parties round out the festival.
The most important venues
The main program at this year’s festival will again be presented at the five classic Viennale locations, while the Retrospective films can be seen in the Film Museum.
1010 Vienna, Parkring 12 (740 seats)
The classic cinema for premieres, with a large screen and an inimitable ambience – a “flagship” of urban cinema culture in Vienna.
Stadtkino im Künstlerhaus
1010 Vienna, Karlsplatz 5 (285 seats)
The former Künstlerhauskino – recently reopened as the “Stadkino im Künstlerhaus,” a Viennale venue since 2005.
1010 Vienna, Uraniastrasse (240 seats)
Traditionally a highly popular cinema.
1010 Vienna, Johannesgasse 4 (Grosser Saal (Great Hall) 150 seats, Eric-Pleskow Saal 49 seats)
Doubtless one of the most beautiful of Vienna’s cinemas, a former Biedermeier theater with velvet, stucco and a balcony.
Austrian Film Museum
1010 Vienna, Augustinerstrasse 1 (165 seats)
Viennale Retrospective – a collaborative presentation by the Viennale and the Film Museum.
Tickets – prices and further info
Single ticket € 9.00
Special prices available as of 10 tickets
Discounts available upon showing one of the following ID cards:
Ö1-Club / Standard-Abo and customers of ERSTE Bank
Single ticket € 8.50
Advance bookings for the Viennale started on Saturday, October 17, 2015.
Tickets can be purchased at ticket agencies, by phone and in the web shop at www.viennale.at
For details, visit: http://www.viennale.at/en/infos-service/pre-sale
For all Viennale events – with the exception of the galas – there is free selection of seats.
Dive into the cutting edge artistic and avant garde world of cinema – at the Viennale 2015.
If you’re planning an extended stay for the Viennale and need a room, book at the centrally located Schick Hotels Vienna, practically right around the corner of the various cinema venues, which are reachable comfortably on foot and with public transportation.
Data and image sources: © Viennale, http://www.viennale.at/en