Emily Avila appointed as Festival Director at Brisbane International Film Festival

May 4, 2021

Brisbane International Film Festival (BIFF) has appointed Emily Avila as Festival Director to lead the city’s flagship film festival in 2021.
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Emily Avila appointed as Festival Director at Brisbane International Film Festival

Brisbane International Film Festival (BIFF) has appointed Emily Avila as Festival Director to lead the city’s flagship film festival in 2021.

Following the announcement that Film Fantastic will partner with Screen Queensland to deliver BIFF from 2021 to 2023, a national recruitment search saw Brisbane-based curator and filmmaker Emily Avila appointed as Festival Director.

Ms. Avila brings a wealth of experience in festival management, filmmaking, and audience development to the role, having previously delivered three years of the Heart of Gold International Short Film Festival from 2016 to 2018 as Artistic Director.

Ms. Avila’s time at Heart of Gold as well as various roles at The Ethics Centre, Brisbane International Film Festival, West End Film Festival, Essential Media and Entertainment, and Sydney Festival, and her passion for engaging new audiences and supporting filmmakers, will see her leverage BIFF’s prestigious 25-year history to deliver the 2021 Festival.

Chair of Film Fantastic, Sue-Anne Chapman says the Board is delighted to welcome Emily and to work with her to usher in a new era for BIFF.

“Emily’s experience in festival management and her interest in audience development is an exciting opportunity to deliver a fresh new chapter of BIFF for film lovers and screen industry professionals,” says Ms. Chapman.

“The Film Fantastic Board is delighted to be working with Emily to realise the longstanding vision of BIFF and deliver on the excitement and anticipation that Brisbane audiences have for their city’s film festival.”

Screen Queensland CEO Kylie Munnich says Screen Queensland looks forward to working alongside Ms. Avila and her team to deliver a unique cultural event for loyal BIFF fans and Queensland film lovers.

“Ms. Avila’s dedication to developing strong relationships with the community and nurturing local filmmaker talent will bring a new perspective to BIFF and continue to shape its future as Queensland’s flagship film event.

“Through our Screen Culture Funding Program, Screen Queensland sustains vital festivals, like BIFF, for emerging filmmakers to showcase their productions, while inspiring the next generation of screen practitioners and connecting audiences near and far through the special magic of cinematic storytelling,” says Ms Munnich.

Ms. Avila is thrilled to be leading BIFF in 2021 and to have the opportunity to take the reins of Brisbane’s much-loved film festival and deliver a vibrant screen event. “BIFF is a festival that is dear to me. So many of my favourite cinema experiences belong to this festival. To be entrusted with the next iteration of BIFF is a huge honour and one I do not take lightly,” says Ms Avila.

“Our program will seek to engage new audiences with the festival and bring films to Brisbane that delight our city’s cinephiles. We will scour the globe for films that resonate and look inward as well, at films that have sprung from Brisbane and our local creatives. There will be something for everyone, but most importantly, if you love film, for eleven days in October that love will be shared by our city as BIFF brings many more unforgettable cinema experiences to Brisbane.”

Emily will commence as Festival Director of Brisbane International Film Festival this month to deliver the 11-day event from October 21-31, 2021. To receive news and updates about BIFF, sign up for the BIFF e-newsletter at BIFFnews.

Brisbane International Film Festival is supported by Screen Queensland through its Screen Culture Funding Program.

ABOUT BRISBANE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL Brisbane International Film Festival (BIFF) will take place from October 21-31, 2021 across Brisbane. The 11-day event will see an exciting program of more than 100 Australian and international films, screen industry development opportunities and special cultural events.

ABOUT FILM FANTASTIC Film Fantastic is a newly created trading name under Gold Coast Film Fantastic Limited. Gold Coast Film Fantastic Limited has proudly delivered the Gold Coast Film Festival since 2002 and with the newly created trading name, is excited to expand its extensive strategic and festival delivery skills with Brisbane International Film Festival.

ABOUT SCREEN QUEENSLAND Screen Queensland is a Queensland Government owned company that invests in talent and production to grow a creative, innovative and successful screen industry with a focus on stories and audience, secures production and post, digital and vfx to Queensland, and  delivers an active screen culture through festivals and events funding across the state. Screen Queensland invests in stories and talent through a range of mechanisms including development, production investment, initiatives, SQ Hub and mentorships. Screen Queensland is deeply committed to increasing diversity in the screen industry to reflect the Australian community. For more information visit screenqld.com.au

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