Venice Film Festival, Gotham Institute and Netflix team up for ‘Next Generation’ film event in New York

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The event will screen and honor films from the first ten years of Biennale College Cinema at the Paris Theater in New York City from April 20 – 23

La Biennale di Venezia, The Gotham Film & Media Institute, and Netflix announced today Venice Film Festival Presents: Next Generation, a new four day event celebrating films from La Biennale di Venezia’s Biennale College Cinema. Taking place April 20 – 23 at the legendary Paris Theater in New York City, the event will screen and honor films from the first ten years of Biennale College Cinema, an incubator program that has had a tremendous impact on contemporary world cinema by nurturing and producing low-budget films by emerging filmmakers. Among the college’s major successes are Ricky D’Ambrose’s Spirit Award-winner The Cathedral, and Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese’s This is Not a Burial, It’s a Resurrection.

Biennale College Cinema, launched by the Venice Biennale in 2012 – director Alberto Barbera, Head of Program Savina Neirotti – selects twelve feature film projects each year presented by directors in their first or second work and emerging producers in a two-week workshop held by tutors, at a former monastery on the island of San Servolo in the Venetian lagoon. Out of these twelve projects, up to four projects are then selected which are fully supported with €200,000 and presented as world premieres at the Venice International Film Festival. Biennale College Cinema follows the making of films throughout the entire production cycle, working with tutors in close contact with the producer and director teams. Overall, in ten years the Biennale College – Cinema has made 34 feature films by emerging directors, often awarded in national and international contexts, following 2,337 applications received from all over the world.

The Gotham has been an Academic Partner of Biennale College Cinema since its inception. Venice Film Festival Presents: Next Generation, presented by La Biennale di Venezia, The Gotham and Netflix, will celebrate the films and filmmakers that have come out of this impactful program. 

Venice Film Festival: Next Generation will offer filmgoers and aspiring filmmakers a unique inside look at the creative process. All screenings will be accompanied by in-depth discussions pairing new filmmakers with established directors, producers, and writers. The discussions will include exclusive behind-the-scenes video giving a glimpse into the production process.

Venice Film Festival Presents: Next Generation will be a unique event that will joyfully showcase the beauty and skill contained in some of the many magnificent films that have emerged from Biennale College Cinema in its first decade,” said Alberto Barbera and Savina Neirotti. “We’re deeply appreciative of the continued support from our friends and Academic Partners at The Gotham, as well as the kind people at Netflix, who are committed to ushering many more decades of wonderful films,” 

Opening night of Venice Film Festival Presents: Next Generation will feature a screening of mystery/thriller Our Father, the Devil along with remarks by Director Alberto Barbera and the Head of Programme Savina Neirotti. Nikyatu Jusu, a rising star who recently won the “Someone to Watch” Award at the Film Independent Spirit Awards for her film Nanny, will serve as moderator for the opening night discussion with director Ellie Foumbi. Other films that came out of Biennale College Cinema set to be screened at Venice Film Festival Presents: Next Generation include Beautiful ThingsThe CathedralThe FitsHotel Salvation, and This Is Not a Burial, It’s a Resurrection.

“On top of organizing the oldest and one of the most influential film festivals in the world, La Biennale di Venezia passionately nurtures and champions up-and-coming filmmakers through the remarkable Biennale College Cinema.” said Jeffrey Sharp, Executive Director of The Gotham Film & Media Institute. “We’re proud of our longstanding collaboration with Biennale College Cinema and we’re thrilled to partner with La Biennale di Venezia and Netflix on sharing some of the excellent work to emerge from this incredible program.”

“This is a very exciting program for the Paris Theater,” said Spencer Klein, Netflix’s Head of Distribution. “We’re thrilled to bring this important component of the Venice Film Festival to New York audiences, and are especially pleased at the quality of the films we’ll be showing and the fact that the filmmakers will be there to discuss their work.” 

To get tickets for Venice Film Festival Presents: Next Generation, visit To learn more about Biennale College Cinema, including how to apply, visit

Erik Anderson

Erik Anderson is the founder/owner and Editor-in-Chief of AwardsWatch and has always loved all things Oscar, having watched the Academy Awards since he was in single digits; making lists, rankings and predictions throughout the show. This led him down the path to obsessing about awards. Much later, he found himself in film school and the film forums of GoldDerby, and then migrated over to the former Oscarwatch (now AwardsDaily), before breaking off to create AwardsWatch in 2013. He is a Rotten Tomatoes-approved critic, accredited by the Cannes Film Festival, Telluride Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival and more, is a member of the International Cinephile Society (ICS), The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics (GALECA), Hollywood Critics Association (HCA) and the International Press Academy. Among his many achieved goals with AwardsWatch, he has given a platform to underrepresented writers and critics and supplied them with access to film festivals and the industry and calls the Bay Area his home where he lives with his husband and son.

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