Film Fest stirred controversy by showing 'Valentin'

BUENOS AIRES — Argentina’s Mar del Plata film festival is expected to keep its A-grade status despite the wrangle over screening an ineligible film in competition during its March 6-15 event.

Fiapf, the international producers’ org that supervises A-level fests, disqualified Argentine helmer Alejandro Agresti’s “Valentin” because it had already competed at Biarritz last September. Films can screen only in one official competition. However, Mar del Plata organizers say the rules do not apply as Biarritz is not an A-grade fest and agreed to show the film, which won the Jury’s Special Prize.

They will discuss the issue with Fiapf officials on May 19 at the Cannes Film Festival, and expressed confidence in a satisfactory resolution.

“Everything will be resolved,” Miguel Pereira, artistic coordinator of the country’s biggest film fest, said on Wednesday. “It was a misunderstanding. Everything was blown out of proportion by the press.”

Helmer Hector Olivera, Fiapf’s Argentine representative said recently, “Even though ‘Valentin’ stirred up a controversy, I don’t think that the festival will lose its status because of it.”

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