FIAPF moves Locarno fest into A-list group

Event upgraded, joins Cannes, Berlin, Venice

LONDON — Switzerland’s Locarno Film Festival has been upgraded to elite, A-list status by the Intl. Federation of Film Producers Associations (FIAPF).

The Paris-based body voted to move Locarno from category two, reserved for festivals offering a “specialized competition” section, to the category one, non-specialized competitive section.

“It’s excellent for us,” a Locarno source told Daily Variety. “Though Switzerland has never had a festival in this category, we have always essentially been it and have been pushing FIAPF to upgrade us for some time. This official rating increases our standing in dealing with distributors and also access to additional financial support for subtitling, etc.”

The other A-list festivals are Cannes, Berlin, Venice, San Sebastian, Montreal, Karlovy Vary, Tokyo, Moscow, Mar del Plata, Shanghai and Cairo.

FIAPF offers its grading system to paying members and is used by producers to give some measure of a fest’s standing. In practice, however, a festival’s reputation counts more in attracting quality product.

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