We are approaching the end of June. This time last year, we were already working on a vibrant program for the 38th edition of Bergamo Film Meeting. In mid-February, we were ready: 163 films to be screened, many guests who had confirmed their presence, new and future-oriented projects such as the Industry Meetings. Then came the shock of the Coronavirus pandemic.
The Festival was suspended at first, then postponed to May, then eventually mired in the uncertainty that came along with the global emergency. Now, with much regret, we must say a definitive no: the 38th edition will be remembered as the edition that wasn’t. There’s no more time, and the global scenario is still too precarious to think of postponing it further in the Fall.
The 39th edition, scheduled for March 6 – 14, 2021 cannot wait any longer and deserves our full attention. We have to get down to it, start watching movies, plan retrospectives and new projects. We have already said it, but it bears repeating: the 2021 edition will not be a replica of the one cancelled this year.
For us, it is as if Bergamo Film Meeting 2020 has already happened: the program had been closed, as well as the catalogue; the various commitments with our many collaborators, partners and volunteers defined; the venues were booked, the subtitles translated, the arrivals of all our guests already scheduled. All that was missing was what constitutes the substance of the Festival: the “presence” of the audience, filmmakers and industry professionals. It would have happened during nine engaging days vibrant with emotions and experiences to be remembered. An event for passion, enthusiasm, criticism and knowledge to be shared. An event where the mere concept of social distancing would only disrupt the atmosphere we strive for and which we believe essential for the very existence of Bergamo Film Meeting.
See you all next year then, hoping that this dramatic emergency will be fully resolved and that everyone will be able to move freely and fill the theatres again. Cinema needs and deserves the closeness between people, the freedom to choose our favourite seats, the magic of moving pictures on a big screen.