×

San Sebastián Film Festival Co-Launches Elías Querejeta Film School

In a pioneering move, the school will train cineastes in film curation and festival programming

MADRID — In a move which reflects the burgeoning reinvention of film festivals worldwide, major and minor, Spain’s San Sebastián Festival, the highest-profile movie event in the Spanish-speaking world, is co-launching a training facility, the Elías Querejeta Zine Eskola (Elías Querejeta Film School).

Financed by the Basque Country’s Gipuzkoa Diputación Foral, the government of one of its three provinces, the Elías Querejeta Film School marks San Sebastian’s first year-round event as festivals reconvert from one-off one-week-or-more events into all-year institutions running film markets (Cannes’ Ventana Sur, a j.v. with Argentina’s Incaa film agency), film funds (Berlin’s World Cinema Fund or Venice’s Biennale College – Cinema) or project development initiatives (the Sundance Institute Lab Program).

Set to launch with next year’s San Sebastián Festival in September 2018, the Elías Querejeta Film School will offer pioneering training in festival programming and showcase curation. Participants, some 15 a year, will be made party, having signed confidentiality contracts, to San Sebastian Festival meetings and its decision-making process, including why films are accepted or rejected, said San Sebastian director José Luis Rebordinos.

“I can’t think of a better school than living this directly, seeing how in practice, not in theory, one of the most important festivals in Europe confronts its programming,” Rebordinos added.

In two parallel post-graduate courses, the Basque Filmotheque will impart training to students in film preservation and restoration, San Sebastián’s Tabakalera, the city’s new contemporary culture center whose reconverted tabaco factory house the Filmotecque and Festival, will offer a one year program in film creation.

The Elías Querejeta Film School dovetails with San Sebastian’s focus on new talent, seen in its New Directors Competition, a its most prominent sidebar, and its International Film Schools Meeting which will see Todd Haynes and Christine Vachon delivering a masterclass and the festival giving larger prominence to its short film section.

Such “endogamic” institutions as festivals also need “fresh air,” Rebordinos said, arguing that “the Festival will give a lot to the school but the School will give a lot to the Festival.”

The Elías Querejeta Film School is named after one of the Basque Country’s most famous film sons, Elías Querejeta who gave up a career as a professional soccer player for Real Sociedad to produce some of the greatest films by Carlos Saura (“The Hunt,” “Raise Ravens,” “Deprisa, Deprisa”), Victor Erice (“The Spirit of the Beehive,” “The South”), Jaime Chavarri (“El Desencanto”), Montxo Armendariz (“Tasio”), Fernando León (“Mondays in the Sun”) and his daughter, Gracia Querejeta (“Seven Billiards Tables”). Under Franco, these films rolled back the fronteirs of freedom for the film industry. After the dictators death in 1975, they went on to expose sometimes the weight of the past and social sores in Spain’s newly-won democracy.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • iQIYI headquarters building in Beijing

    China’s iQIYI in Talks for Indonesia Expansion

    Chinese streaming firm iQIYI is in negotiations to expand further into Southeast Asia through a venture with Indonesia’s Media Nusantara Citra. iQIYI announced its first step outside Chinese-majority territories in June, when it revealed a linkup in Malaysia with pay-TV leader Astro. It also operates in Taiwan. In April, the company said that it planned [...]

  • Spotify logo is presented on a

    Spotify Triples Free-Trial Period on Premium Service

    Spotify today extended the free-trial period for its Premium service from one month to three, tripling the amount of time listeners can take full advantage of the streaming giant’s offerings without paying for them. According to the announcement, the offer is “always-on/not limited time,” and will roll out across Spotify Premium plans globally: Individual and [...]

  • Moviepass

    MoviePass Confirms Security Lapse May Have Exposed Customer Credit Card Data

    MoviePass, the struggling movie ticket subscription service, confirmed that a security issue may have exposed customers’ records online, including credit card info. In a statement, MoviePass said Wednesday that the security lapse was recently discovered and its system was immediately secured. News of the data breach was first reported Tuesday by TechCrunch, which alleged that [...]

  • Tycho weather app

    This Website Creates Spotify & Apple Music Playlists Based on Your Local Weather

    Electronica musician Tycho launched a clever promotional website for his new album “Weather” this week: Visitors of Tycho’s website can use a web app to generate a playlist based on their local weather. Playlists can be saved to both Spotify and Apple Music, and consist of 25 songs, both from Tycho’s catalog as well as [...]

  • AT&T TV

    AT&T TV: An Unskinny Streaming Bundle That Looks a Lot Like Traditional Pay TV

    AT&T this week launched AT&T TV, a new subscription streaming television service that uses an Android-based internet set-top, in 10 markets. But the way it’s priced and packaged looks very similar to cable and satellite TV services — in other words, AT&T TV isn’t targeted at the cord-cutter crowd. It’s basically designed as a way [...]

  • Sofia Wylie arrives at Variety's Power

    Disney Channel Enlists Duplass Brothers for YouTube Hip-Hop Dance Series Starring Sofia Wylie

    Disney Channel’s first original scripted series made exclusively for release on YouTube is “Shook,” a hip-hop dance short-form series starring Sofia Wylie, produced by Mark Duplass and Jay Duplass. “Shook” will debut Saturday, Sept. 28, on Disney Channel’s YouTube channel. The scripted single-camera show centers on 15-year-old Mia (Wylie), who yearns to dance professionally but [...]

  • YouTube logo

    YouTube Is Getting Rid of Messaging Feature

    YouTube is killing off a feature that allowed users to share videos and other messages with each other. YouTube Messages, which was first introduced in January of 2017, will be turned off by September 18, the company announced this week. “We’re constantly reevaluating our priorities and have decided to discontinue YouTube’s native direct messaging feature [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content