International Film Festival Rotterdam to celebrate its 50th edition in a reimagined format

1 February, 2021

International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) celebrates this year its 50th-anniversary edition, which will take place in a reimagined and extended format, being divided into two parts: February 1-7 and June 2-6, joined by a continuous programme of offline and online special events.

Festival director Vanja Kaludjercic: “Through the new path we are taking in 2021, we are expanding beyond our existing boundaries. At the same time, our commitment to our makers, industry and audiences remains undiminished. As is our desire to deliver a creatively audacious, mesmerising festival, albeit one whose presentation – this year at least – will seem a little unfamiliar. The form may be different, but our programme will be as thrilling and vital as ever.”

In February, the event revolves around the competition programs: Tiger Competition, Big Screen Competition and Ammodo Tiger Short Competition. Moreover, several films will have their previews within the Limelight section.

CineMart and Rotterdam Lab

This first part of the festival will also host the IFFR Pro Days, which includes CineMart and Rotterdam Lab; both of them will be presented fully online in 2021.

CineMart is a co-production market that offers filmmakers the chance to present their new film projects. This year, the CineMart selection includes 17 projects, and also presents 4 Immersive projects, in collaboration with VR Days, and 7 BoostNL projects, in collaboration with Netherlands Film Festival.

Rotterdam Lab (January 25 – February 5) will offer 70 emerging producers the opportunity to attend a series of workshops, courses and networking sessions.

Big Talks and IFFR Daily Talk

The two IFFR talk shows will be available online for free and will feature interviews with the filmmakers and debates around the films in the program. The public will have the chance to listen to names such as Mads Mikkelsen, Kelly Reichardt, Benoît Jacquot, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese, Dea Kulumbegashvili and Nicolás Jaar.

Competition programs

Tiger Competition

The festival’s signature competition celebrates this year emerging film talents who don’t shy away from pushing the conventional boundaries.

Among the 16 selected films are Agate mousse (dir. Selim Mourad), Bipolar (dir. Queena Li), I Comete − A Corsican Summer (dir. Pascal Tagnati), Friends and Strangers (dir. James Vaughan), Mayday (dir. Karen Cinorre), Looking for Venera (dir. Norika Sefa).

Big Screen Competition

Big screen Competition is a diverse competition bridging the gap between popular, classic and art house cinema. This year, 15 titles have been selected: Archipel (dir. Félix Dufour-Laperrière), Aristocrats (dir. Sode Yukiko), As We Like It (dir. Chen Hung-i/Muni Wei), Aurora (dir. Paz Fábrega), Carro Rei (dir. Renata Pinheiro), The Cemil Show (dir. Bariş Sarhan), Drifting (dir. Jun Li), The Harbour (dir. Rajeev Ravi), The Last Farmer (dir. M. Manikandan), Les Sorcières de l’Orient (dir. Julien Faraut), Lone Wolf (dir. Jonathan Ogilvie), The North Wind (dir. Renata Litvinova), El perro que no calla (dir. Ana Katz), Sexual Drive (dir. Yoshida Kota), The Year Before the War (dir. Dāvis Sīmanis).


Between February and June, IFFR proposes several important events such as the launch of the 50/50 collection on the IFFR Unleashed, which will include 50 films from the festival’s past 50 editions.

The second part of IFFR’s 50th edition (June 2-6) will focus on the rich history of the festival by bringing into dialogue IFFR luminaries of the last five decades with fresh faces in the cinema landscape. 

International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) kicks off on Monday, February 1st, 2021. For more information, visit

Writer, photographer and videographer. For Films in Frame she writes news about the latest happenings in the film world and brings to the readers' attention the productions that can be seen at the cinema. When she's not writing articles, she's photographing people in a small studio or searching for new cake recipes.