The Edinburgh International Film Festival returns to the August slot this summer from the 75th anniversary
The celebration of cinema in the city will mark its 75th anniversary alongside the International Festival and the Fringe, which also date back to 1947.
The nine-day event will open on Friday August 12, the day before the Edinburgh International Book Festival begins.
The EIFF date change was confirmed 15 years after event organizers announced a move to June after 60 years as the cornerstone of the city’s cultural extravaganza in August.
The move was intended to help Scotland’s longest-running film festival reduce competition with other major international events, raise EIFF’s profile and enable it to make greater use of venues in the city that are not are generally not available in August.
The City Festival, Traverse and Royal Lyceum theaters have all hosted EIFF events since the festival was staged earlier in the calendar.
However, the move to June has had a mixed reaction from the film industry amid claims that the profile of the EIF has been lower since it was held outside of the International Festival, Fringe, Tatto and celebrations of the city’s literature and visual arts.
Like other festivals, EIFF has been forced to scale down its schedule in 2021 due to the late easing of Covid restrictions on events in Scotland.
A seven-day ‘hybrid’ event has been postponed until August, weeks after the Scottish government agreed to reduce physical distancing restrictions from two to one meter in mid-July.
The permanent change of dates was announced by Kristy Matheson, the festival’s new creative director. The Australian film industry expert, appointed last summer, has been tasked with ushering the EIF into a new era following the abrupt departure of its last artistic director, Mark Adams, in November 2019.
Ms Matheson, who was previously a filmmaker at ACMI, Australia’s national museum of screen culture, leads programming at the Filmhouse Cinema, the festival’s headquarters, and is also working on its multi-million new home project of books at the Festival Carré.
She said: “We are delighted to announce that following the success of 2021, the EIFF will once again be at the heart of Edinburgh’s summer festival season in 2022.
“Against the backdrop of the largest global gathering of culture in the world, EIFF in August is a wonderful opportunity for us to center cinema as a major and valued art form within this broader and dynamic conversation.
“Inspired by our city’s unique identity and our love of cinema, EIFF invites audiences, artists and innovators to imagine new worlds with us, engage in thoughtful conversations and experience joyful encounters through our town in August.
“We look forward to sharing more information about the Festival and its plans in due course and to welcoming Edinburgh and the world to our 75th edition in August.”
EIFF announced the change in dates by announcing that it was welcoming film submissions for this year’s programme.
Fringe organizers have announced they will open registration for its 75th anniversary program in a few weeks.
The Fringe Society has also confirmed that it will release a printed program for the event’s first large-scale incarnation since 2019.