By Nigar Orujova
The second Baku International FICTS Sport Films Festival was opened at the largest theatre in the South Caucasus "Nizami Cinema Center" in Baku on November 18.
The festival is co-organized by Culture and Tourism Ministry, Youth and Sport Ministry and the National Olympic Committee. The event is organized in partnership with Federation International Cinema Television Sportifs (FICTS).
A press-conference was held before the opening of the festival, attended by President of the International Federation of Sport Film and Television Franco Ascani (Italy), Chairman of the jury of the festival, producer Andrew Florian (Hungary), and members of the jury Rafiqa Guliyeva and Yusif Sheikhov (Azerbaijan) and French producer Christophe Offenstein.
"The International Festival is held in Baku for the second time and it is a very important event in promoting the idea of culture through sport among citizens of different countries," Sheikhov said.
The main aim of the festival being held on the eve of the first European Games in Baku is to show viewers some interesting films on various sports, and promote the authors of the best films.
"The Federation seeks to transform sport into a global movement for the sake of humanity, based on the ideals of community, tolerance, fair play and ethics, with a view to strengthening the values of sport and the dissemination of cultural and artistic trends of the world’s television and movies through the demonstration of sport," Ascani said.
"The Festival in Baku is one of the most exciting sporting events in the world of sport films. The best sports movies is a visual promotion of healthy lifestyle," he stressed.
The guests also paid gratitude to the organizers of the festival and expressed confidence that the first European Games to be held in Baku on June 12-28, 2015, will take place at the highest level and will open new horizons for the filmmakers. More than 6,000 athletes will compete in a total of 20 sports over 17 days.
Opening the festival, Culture and Tourism Minister Abulfas Garayev stressed that the second Baku International Festival of Sports Films has become a significant event in the cultural and sporting life of the country.
"The International Sport Film Festival, held for the second time, will demonstrate the value of cinema and sports television, their cultural and ethical function by transmitting images with the help of modern technology," he added.
Some 115 films from 33 countries are attending the festival. The selection board has admitted 48 of the films representing 23 countries to participation in the competition section.
The films are presented in five categories including "Feature Film", "Sport and Personality", "World and Sport", "TV Films" and "National Film".
The festival will also present an exhibition of art photography dedicated to sports.
The event involves internationally renowned representatives of sports community, winners of the various competitions, Olympic champions and world champions, official representatives of National Olympic Committees of Europe, the leadership of the International Federation of Sport Film and Television.
At the opening day, the feature film of Christophe Offenstein “En solitaire” (Turning Tide) was screened. The festival that will last until November 21 is open for public.