Industry sees appointment as positive step

ROME — Film critic Adriano Apra will step down as director of the Pesaro Intl. Festival of New Cinema following the 34th edition, which is currently under way, to become director of Italy’s National Cinematheque in Rome.

Officially announced June 16, the appointment of Apra — a seasoned film academic with a strong background in film restoration — is being viewed as a positive step away from the more bureaucratic management of the past.

It follows the recent arrival of respected film pundit Lino Micciche as president of the National Film School (formerly the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia), which is housed under the same roof. The appointments are a key part of deputy premier Walter Veltroni’s push to revitalize the venerable state-run structures.

One of Apra’s foremost responsibilities will be to oversee the opening of a permanent national film theater in Rome to ensure that the cinematheque’s vast collection of around 35,000 titles can be screened for the public and not just kept locked away in vaults.

A well-known critic and author of books on filmmakers such as Roberto Rossellini, Jean-Luc Godard and Andy Warhol, Apra has been associated with the Pesaro fest since its second edition in 1966. He became director in 1990. No announcement has yet been made regarding his replacement.

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more