A drawing of a young boy with an oversized head, a character from BLA BLA, an interactive website produced by Vincent Morisset in 2011.

Press Releases & Media Kits

The NFB at the 30th edition of the International Festival of Films on Art (FIFA)

Press release


Montreal, February 23, 2012 – The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) will present a varied and groundbreaking selection of seven films at the 30th edition of the International Festival of Films on Art (FIFA), from March 15 to 25, 2012. The documentary A Museum in the City ( Echo Media/NFB) by Luc Bourdon will be in competition at the festival, having its world premiere. Two other NFB films will be shown as world premieres: the documentary The Mystery of Mazo de la Roche ( Red Queen Productions/NFB) by Maya Gallus and the animated short film Kaspar by Diane Obomsawin. Also in competition, Bone Wind Fire by Jill Sharpe delves into the creative processes of Georgia O'Keeffe, Emily Carr and Frida Kahlo. And for the first time ever, FIFA will present a 3D film, Lost Action: Trace by Marlene Millar, Crystal Pite and Philip Szporer.

World premieres

A Museum in the City by Luc Bourdon (Echo Media/NFB, 52 min) takes viewers on a behind-the-scenes visit to the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) and looks back over its 150-year history. In touring the museum's pavilions, the viewer meets curators, educators, artisans, the institution's visionary director—Nathalie Bondil—as well as a dynamic and dedicated team of volunteers, without whom the museum would not exist. Luc Bourdon has chosen to make a film about the art of bringing a museum to life, giving us a new perspective on this unique institution and ensuring that our visits there will never be the same. The premiere will take place with the director in attendance.

The Mystery of Mazo de la Roche by Maya Gallus (Red Queen Productions/NFB, 52 min) introduces one of the most successful and prolific women writers of the 20th century. Her novel Jalna, which tells the dramatic story of a family dynasty, skyrocketed her to international fame and fortune in 1927. By the time she died, 11 million copies of her book had been sold in 93 languages. She remains one of this country's bestselling authors, but despite her widespread fame her private life remains a mystery. The film uses both dramatic and documentary techniques to untie the tangled life of this extraordinary woman.

In the animated short Kaspar (NFB), filmmaker Diane Obomsawin offers viewers an impressionistic fable that tells the tale of Kaspar Hauser, a famous 19th-century orphan who has inspired countless artists. Poetry, sadness and uncertainty permeate this story which, as it unfolds, leads to the fascinating discovery of a beautiful yet terrifying environment. The premiere will take place with the director in attendance and will be followed by a question period.

Also in competition

Premiering in Montreal and screening in competition is Bone Wind Fire by Jill Sharpe (NFB, 30 min). The director takes viewers on an intimate and evocative journey into the hearts, minds and vision of Georgia O'Keeffe, Emily Carr and Frida Kahlo—three of the 20th century's most remarkable artists. Bone Wind Fire uses the women's own words, taken from their letters and diaries, to reveal three individual creative processes in all their subtle and fascinating variety. Carefully crafted and creatively photographed, the film captures the view through the artists' eyes.

Media Arts Section/Diagonals

Screening as a Canadian premiere is Lost Action: Trace (NFB, 4 min), an experimental stereoscopic 3D dance film that explores universal themes of conflict and loss, experienced as we cycle infinitely through states of love and war. Celebrated choreographer Crystal Pite and veteran dance filmmakers Marlene Millar and Philip Szporer combine the raw physicality of athletic power with Theodore Ushev's hauntingly distinct artwork, committing an urgent act of remembrance inspired by the fading legacies of WWI. This first presentation of a 3D work at FIFA will be followed by a discussion with Marlene Millar and Philip Szporer, and director of photography Michael Wees.

Lost Action: Trace (Behind the Scenes) by Jason Lee (NFB, 6 min) gives viewers an inside look at the creative process behind this unique film.

In Source, by Pepita Ferrari (NFB, 6 min), Margie Gillis—the very embodiment of modern dance—steps into the light, lifts her arms and unleashes her extraordinary mane into the air. Four decades into a remarkable career, Gillis is a beacon of compassion and creativity, inventing beauty in a world that needs more of it. High-speed cameras capture the delicate and savage joy of Canada's own Isadora Duncan. The film will be followed by a discussion with Pepita Ferrari and Margie Gillis.

Selection of works by Norman McLaren

Canadian artist Jim Verburg, one of the participants of the fifth edition of Hothouse, the NFB's program for emerging animation filmmakers, will present an installation at FIFA as well as a selection of works by filmmakers and video artists who influenced his art, including films by the master of animation, Norman McLaren.

International Market of Films on Art (MIFA)

The NFB supports MIFA, an extraordinary networking and exchange opportunity for professionals in film and cultural institutions from around the world. The second edition will take place this year from March 21–24.

About the NFB

Canada's public producer and distributor, the National Film Board of Canada creates interactive works, social-issue documentaries, auteur animation and alternative dramas that provide the world with a unique Canadian perspective. The NFB is developing the entertainment forms of the future in groundbreaking interactive productions, while pioneering new directions in 3D stereoscopic film, community-based media, and more. It works in collaboration with emerging and established filmmakers, digital media creators and co-producers in every region of Canada, with Aboriginal and culturally diverse communities, as well as partners around the world. Since the NFB's founding in 1939, it has created over 13,000 productions and won over 5,000 awards, including 4 Webbys, 12 Oscars and more than 90 Genies. Over 2,000 NFB productions can be streamed online, at the NFB.ca Screening Room as well as via partnerships with the world's leading video portals, while the NFB's growing family of apps for smartphones, tablets and connected TV delivers the experience of cinema to Canadians everywhere.



Pat Dillon                   
NFB Publicist                     
Phone: 514-283-9411               
Cell: 514-206-1750               
E-mail: p.a.dillon@nfb.ca                

Lily Robert
Director, Corporate Communications, NFB
Phone: 514-283-3838
Cell: 514-296-8261
E-mail: l.robert@nfb.ca