IFFO: The International Film Festival of Ottawa Offers a Day-Long Event with a Focus on Cinema Heritage

An annual celebration of Canadian and world cinema, SAVE AS is a one-day conference dedicated to examining issues of preservation, restoration, distribution, and exhibition of the always-endangered world cinema heritage.

SAVE AS: The Future of Preserving, Distributing, and Exhibiting Canadian and World Cinematic Heritage

Thursday, March 9, 2023 (In-person) / Available virtually in April

In its inaugural year, SAVE AS attracted a cross-section of Canadian and international film archivists, distributors, exhibitors, and streaming services such as Cannes Classics, Janus Films, the Criterion Channel, the NFB, and the National Archives of Canada. With the support of Telefilm Canada, the event continues to grow by raising awareness of the urgency and importance of preserving, restoring, distributing, and exhibiting film classics.

Taking place at the Ottawa Art Gallery on March 9 during the two-week run of the International Film Festival of Ottawa (IFFO), the conference’s 2023 international focus is African cinema. At the event, African cinema scholar Professor Aboubakar Sanogo will delve into the restoration of Ousmane Sembene’s classic Mandabi (1968) and will lead a panel discussion on the efforts being made to restore, preserve, and disseminate the classics of African cinema.

To highlight Canadian cinema restoration efforts, SAVE AS 2023 presents a case study of internationally renowned writer-director Patricia Rozema’s groundbreaking feature, When Night Is Falling (1995). In addition, critically acclaimed director Ron Mann will discuss his instrumental role in the process behind the new 4K version of Guy Maddin’s Tales From The Gimli Hospital (1988). As a part of IFFO, the restored When Night is Falling will be screened on March 9 at the Alma Duncan Salon with Patricia Rozema in attendance and Tales from the Gimli Hospital will be screened on March 18 at the Mayfair Theatre with Maddin in attendance for a Q&A.


DIY Archiving
In the absence of coordinated state-run archival activities, inspired and motivated individuals and NGOs have been engaged in the daunting tasks of restoring, preserving, archiving and exhibiting audiovisual artifacts from a variety of sectors. What is the range and reach of these ‘do-it-yourself’ activities? What are the outlines of this ‘ground up’ approach to the archiving, restoring, and exhibiting processes and how can these practitioners inform and even help shape potential future public sector/government policy frameworks? Moderator: Brian Belovarac Theatrical Distribution, Janus Films/Criterion Channel

Decolonizing the Archive
A reflection on the actions underway to expand the spectrum of archival processes, with a view toward integrating meaningfully and disseminating and exhibiting historically marginalized works. This panel will also interrogate the colonial structures and attitudes that have shaped the idea of ‘the archives’ and highlight the work being done now to make that idea and its institutions more responsive and inclusive. Moderator: Janine Marchessault, York University, Archive/Counter-Archive

SAVE AS Focus 2023: Africa
What are the international activities being undertaken to restore, preserve, and disseminate the classics of African cinema? In addition to a presentation and panel discussion on this subject, SAVE AS will present a special tribute screening of Mandabi, a key recently restored work by African cinema pioneer, Ousmane Sembene, in celebration of the centenary of his birth in 1923. Moderator: Aboubakar Sanogo (Carleton University)


When Night is Falling (1995)
Acclaimed, award-winning Canadian director Patricia Rozema will be showcasing the 4K restoration of her 1995 groundbreaking LGBTQ+ film, as well as discussing the challenges she faced in getting her other works, notably her underrated second feature from 1990, White Room, restored and distributed. Rozema will also attend a special screening of When Night Is Falling, to introduce and discuss her film.

Tales From the Gimli Hospital (dir. Guy Maddin Canada, 1988) /
Rush to Judgment (dir. Emile de Antonio USA, 1967)
Award-winning Canadian filmmaker Ron Mann will discuss his work on the restorations of these two classic films.

Mandabi (1968)
Renowned African cinema scholar, Professor Aboubakar Sanogo, on the restoration of this Ousmane Sembene’s 1968 classic.

Also at IFFO, on March 18 Laura Horak presents Cinema’s First Nasty Women, a selection of short films from the silent era celebrating the contributions of women in front of and behind the camera.

Pass Information
SAVE AS 2023 passes are Pick Your Price with a suggested donation of $20 for students to $50 for professionals. Participants also receive a 30% discount off tickets to the screenings of When Night is Falling, Tales from the Gimli Hospital, Rush to Judgment, and Mandabi. SAVE AS passes can be ordered through the SAVE AS webpage. Tickets and passes for IFFO 2023 are available through the Festival’s box office.

International Film Festival of Ottawa (IFFO)
2 Daly Ave. Suite A222
Ottawa, ON K1N 6E2
(613) 232-8769

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