In July of 2018, the Fantasia will celebrate its 22nd edition. Located in the heart of beautiful Montreal, Fantasia is a cultural and professional destination point, and since its first edition, the festival’s ever-growing popularity has attracted the attention of the international film industry alongside a legion of attendees from across the world. Every facet of the filmmaking chain is increasingly represented with in-person delegates at the festival: directors, actors, producers, studio representatives, distributors and festival programmers, who get to experience the legendarily enthusiastic, taste-making audience of Fantasia.
For our forthcoming 22nd Edition, Fantasia will host the 10th edition of the Frontières International Co-Production Market. For this event alone, more than 400 members of the film industry will be making their way to Montreal. Overall, the 2018 edition of Fantasia will welcome close to 500 guests from all facets of the film industry.
Some of the numerous guests in past editions of Fantasia have included: Robert Pattinson, Ben & Josh Safdie, Guillermo del Toro, Mark Hamill, Takashi Miike, Tony Todd, Danny Masterson, David Bordwell, David Arquette, Jaume Balagueró, Jay Baruchel, Michael J. Bassett, Michael Biehn, Don Bluth, Kim Bodnia, Darren Lynn Bousman, Nicolas Bro, Jörg Buttgereit, Paul Campion, John Carpenter, Hélène Cattet, Nacho Cerda, Lau Ching-Wan, Larry Cohen, Joe Coleman, Jeffrey Combs, Don Coscarelli, Maurice G. Dantec, Roy Dupuis, Jason Eisener, Larry Fessenden, Bruno Forzani, Amanda Fuller, Xavier Gens, Julian Gilbey, Buddy Giovinazzo, Stuart Gordon, Matthew Gray Gubler, Adam Green, Sasha Grey, James Gunn, Robin Hardy, Lee Hae-young, Ray Harryhausen, Frank Henenlotter, Noburo Iguchi, Yang Ik-June, Yoshimasa Ishibashi, Shunji Iwai, Kang Je-gyu, Lee Joon-ik, Terry Jones, Shusuke Kaneko, Udo Kier, Ryûhei Kitamura, Satoshi Kon, Ted Kotcheff, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Tyler Labine, John Landis, Herschell Gordon Lewis, Casper van Dien, Bruce Leung, Gordon Liu, David Lowery, José Mojica Marins, Neil Marshall, Malcolm McDowell, Lucky McKee, Glenn McQuaid, Jim Mickle, Daniel Monzón, Bill Mosely, Hideo Nakata, Paul Naschy, Vincenzo Natali, Yoshihiro Nishimura, F.J. Ossang, Bangjong Pisanthanakun, Bill Plympton, Nicolas Winding Refn, Jean Rollin, Eli Roth, Simon Rumley, Ken Russell, Josh and Ben Safdie, Tak Sakaguchi, Tom Savini, Marc Senter, Ryoo Seung-wan, Eihi Shiina, Chris Sivertson, Christopher Smith, Sion Sono, Richard Stanley, Carl Tibbetts, Johnnie To, Alan Tudyk, Agustín Villaronga, Tomas Villum Jensen, Ti West, Ben Wheatley, Adam Wingard and Parkpoom Wongpoom, Masaaki Yuasa, among many others.
For our forthcoming 22nd Edition, Fantasia embarks for the 7th year on a major industry-driven venture, the Fantasia Industry Rendez-Vous, which will include the Frontières International Co-Production Market’s 10th edition and the Fantasia Film Market. For this event alone, more than 400 members of the film industry will be making their way to Montreal. Overall, the 2018 edition of Fantasia will welcome close to 500 guests from all facets of the film industry.
Fantasia is at the vanguard of international genre cinema, thanks to its distinct programming, its prominent media coverage and the record-breaking attendance by passionate film fans. Over 100,000 festival-goers attended Fantasia in 2017, and the festival has attracted over a million spectators over its duration, establishing Fantasia as an event with long-term benefits for films both big and small. Fantasia’s website was frequented by some 135 000 visitors, for more than 1 375 000 pages views.
The 21st edition of Fantasia International Film Festival had impact in the media across the world. For the fourth consecutive year, close to 3,000 articles or media mentions went out on the topic of our festival and over 550 media outlets from some 35 countries covered or mentionned our festival, while some 230 journalists were accredited to cover us.
Fantasia is regularly featured in such outlets as Variety, Screen, Cahiers du Cinéma, Entertainment Weekly, IndieWire, Vice, The Hollywood Reporter, Screen Anarchy, Premiere, The Daily Beast, Nerdist, RogerEbert.Com, MovieMaker Magazine, Ain’t it Cool News, The A.V. Club, Birth. Movies. Death., Arrow in the Head, Senses of Cinema, Film Threat, The Globe and Mail, Filmmaker Magazine, CBC, Film School Rejects, Rue Morgue, Sight & Sound Magazine, Le Monde, Dread Central, Quiet Earth, Film Comment, Bloody Disgusting, Anime News Network, Playback, KoBiz, Fangoria, Coming Soon, Mad Movies, Shock ‘til You Drop and Little White Lies, as well as front-page and cover stories in local print media such as Le Devoir, The Montreal Gazette, Journal de Montreal, Cult MTL, Voir and La Presse.
Since its earliest days, Fantasia has been responsible for breaking countless new talents and introducing International greats to new audiences in our part of the world. Among our accomplishments:
Fantasia’s eight official competitions are another way the festival ensures recognition and prestige for the films in our program. In addition to our numerous Audience Awards, for which all films (excluding retrospectives) are eligible, our juried competitions are as follows:
The Grand Jury Competition consisting of feature films competing for: The “Cheval Noir” Award for Best Feature Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Screenplay.
The First Feature Competition consisting of feature directorial debuts competing for: The “New Flesh” Award for Best First Feature.
The Satoshi Kon Award for Achievement in Animation consisting of animated works from the Axis section competing for Best Animated Feature and Best Animated Short Awards
The Action! Award for best Action filmmaking
The Camera Lucida Award, juried by The AQCC (Association Québécoises des Critiques de Cinéma)
The International Short Film Competition
The Quebec Shorts Competition
The DIY Quebec Shorts Competition
Additional awards offered by industry organizations include The Barry Convex Award for Best Canadian Film (administered by Spectacular Optical), The Séquences Award and the L’Écran fantastique Award.
In addition, Fantasia has presented Lifetime Achievement Awards to such singular talents as Ray Harryhausen, Takashi Miike, Ken Russell, Guillermo Del Toro, Mamoru Oshii, Andrzej Zulawski, Jean Rollin, Tobe Hooper, Jose Mojica Marins, Larry Cohen, John Landis, the animation duo of Don Bluth and Gary Goldman and the trail-blazing producing team of John Dunning and Andre Link (founders of Cinepix).
In 2016, Fantasia inaugurated the Denis Héroux Award, a prize that recognizes an exceptional contribution to the development of genre and independent cinema from Quebec. It’s first recipient was director Jean-Claude Lord. Our 2017 recipient was producer Nicole Robert.
Since its beginnings, the Fantasia International Film Festival has explored the diverse realms of genre cinema, creating bridges between the cutting edge and the mainstream, and providing a festive but professional environment where emerging artists are given exposure alongside their more established counterparts, both locally and internationally. We showcase the best in Canadian and world cinema, discovering and nurturing exciting new talents and offering a platform through which artists and audiences can connect.
Fantasia’s definition of genre cinema is broad and continually evolving; aligned with the European tradition of ‘genre’ as a challenging and elegant stream of cinema, the festival juxtaposes pop culture with alternative culture, and its distinct programming has enabled Montreal to radiate in the international film community. Fantasia strives to be a North American counterpart to Spain’s Sitges Fantastic Film Festival, which has been Europe’s leading fantastic film festival for the past 50 years - buzzing with major industry participation and international stars while maintaining an independent and progressive vision that benefits emerging artists. An immense cultural event for a diverse but equally robust audience, bristling with discoveries, opportunities and passion. Fantasia has shown that even the most esoteric films can be accessible to a wider audience when properly contextualized, and can even prove to be significant commercial successes. Renowned worldwide for the boundless energy of its creative team, the festival keeps audiences coming to the theatrical environment, enabling independent artists and distributors to have their work shown in a professional and enthusiastic milieu. While already widely considered to be one of the largest and most influential fantastic film festivals in the world, Fantasia looks forward to expanding on its achievements with more visiting filmmakers, industry attendees, global media impact, original critical writing through a monthly web magazine, and the introduction of a film market that will enable independent media artists to exchange ideas and to connect with patrons and audiences alike.