Giona Nazzaro appointed director of Locarno Film Festival

Giona Nazzaro (right) and Roberto Cicutto, president of the Venice Biennale, in Venice in September Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images

Giona Nazzaro is the new artistic director of the Locarno Film Festival. Born in Zurich and trained as a journalist, he has been general delegate of the International Film Critics’ Week at the Venice Film Festival since 2016.

This content was published on November 5, 2020 - 11:44

“It is an honour to direct the Locarno Film Festival, an institution which has always prioritised quality, auteur filmmaking and which today more than ever is a vital hotbed of ideas, looking creatively to the future of the moving image,” he said. “I will be setting straight to work in the hope of being able to re-open the Piazza Grande, the beating heart of the Festival and an iconic symbol of the resilience of cinema.”

Nazzaro, an Italian citizen, will take up his post officially on January 1, but will start work immediately alongside Nadia Dresti, interim head of artistic direction, the film festival said in a statementExternal link on Thursday.

From 2010 to 2020 Nazzaro was a programmer and curator on the selection committee of the Visions du Réel Festival in Nyon. He has a degree in German and English Language and Literature and has also collaborated with the Locarno Film Festival as a moderator.

Nazzaro has worked with several other film festivals, including the Turin Film Festival, the Rome Film Fest and the Festival dei Popoli in Florence. He has written and curated monographic studies on directors such as Gus Van Sant, Spike Lee and Abel Ferrara.

With an interest in new technologies in film and the arts, he is a professor of Media Design and MultiMedia Arts at NABA (Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti) in Milan. He is also a member of the Federal Commission of Cinema.

The 74th edition of the Locarno Film Festival will take place from August 4-14, 2021. Details of the format of the event will be finalised as health and safety requirements and national regulations develop, the festival said.

The previous director, Lili Hinstin, quit the job after two years at the end of September, citing strategic differences.

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