Sydney Film Festival Returns to Regular Dates, Picks ‘The Forgiven,’ ‘Passengers’ for Initial Lineup

A House Made of Splinters
Credit: Goteborg Film Festival

Charlotte Gainsbourg-starring “The Passengers of the Night” and Ralph Fiennes- and Jessica Chastain-starring “The Forgiven” are among the first batch of movies revealed by the Sydney Film Festival. The festival is planning an in-person event running 8-19 June, 2022.

Australian-produced titles include dance film “Keep Stepping”; “Sissy,” which mixes social media and horror; music title “Six Festivals”; and intimate portrait “The Plains,” which had its premiere in Rotterdam earlier this year.

The 22-film advanced lineup also leans heavily on other festival favorites. “Gentle” which premiered in Sundance; “Hinterland,” which won the audience award in Locarno last year; Peter Strickland’s “Flux Gourmet,” from the Berlinale; Kamila Andini’s “Yuni” winner of Toronto’s Platform award; “Private Desert,” audience award winner at Venice; documentary “Calendar Girls” from the recent Sundance and CPH:DOX festivals; “Please Baby Please,” which opened the Rotterdam festival; “The Territory,” the documentary award-winner at Sundance; “Blue Moon,” winner of the best film prize at San Sebastian; and Quentin Dupieux’s “Incredible But True,” from Berlin.

The selection also finds room for “A House Made of Splinters,” a pre-invasion Ukrainian film that won the directing award in the documentary section at Sundance.

The Sydney Festival has been significantly disrupted by lockdowns and border closures. In 2020, the physical event was canceled and replaced with an online edition.

Last year’s event was originally slated for June, but was initially shifted to August. Then, as Sydney returned to strict lockdown from June due to a delta variant outbreak, dates were stalled again. It eventually ran in November.