CMI Appoints New EIFF Artistic Director

Chris Fujiwara announced as the new Artistic Director of the Edinburgh International Film Festival...

The Board of the Centre for Moving Image (CMI) is delighted to announce that Chris Fujiwara will become Artistic Director of the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

Fujiwara is celebrated internationally as a writer on, and advocate for, film. His extensive experience includes work with international film festivals in diverse capacities: as programme consultant; selection advisor; competition juror; workshop mentor; catalogue editor; and writer and speaker at events. His blog, contains a selection of his writing on, and about, film.

In his writing, lecturing and teaching he has affirmed his commitment to global cinema both present and past, a commitment reflected in his 2007 book, The Little Black Book: Movies (Cassell). Beyond his wide and deep knowledge of film, Chris has extensive contacts and friends among film-makers, film festival directors and programmers, film critics and film distributors.

Chris also brings a track record of encouraging audiences to see great films and join a world-wide discourse on cinema and raising the level of film culture, a cause to which he is devoted. Having spent most of his life based on the east coast of America, Chris is presently based in Tokyo and will begin work immediately from that base, re-locating to Scotland later this year.

Announcing the appointment, Leslie Hills, Chair of the CMI said:

‘We are delighted to have someone of the calibre of Chris Fujiwara joining us and we look forward to a festival to remember in 2012. His extraordinary knowledge of, and passion for, film coupled with a fantastic range of contacts, working with the expertise and dedication of Edinburgh International Film Festival staff, is exciting and will no doubt bring unexpected and delightful results.’

Chris Fujiwara said: ‘It’s an exciting time for film festivals, with so many outstanding films being made in so many countries, so many new audiences to appreciate them, and the ways of distribution and exhibition in flux.

‘At such a time, I’m thrilled to be starting work with the Edinburgh International Film Festival. I’m especially enthusiastic because Edinburgh is a festival that has been known in the past for taking the lead during periods when filmmaking and film criticism were going through major transitions. I look forward to working hard to make Edinburgh central to the transitions that are now under way.’

Caroline Parkinson, Director of Creative Development, Creative Scotland said:

‘This is excellent news for the Edinburgh International Film Festival. In Chris Fujiwara, EIFF has made an outstanding, high-profile appointment which will bring international credibility to the UK’s longest-running film festival. This represents a confident appointment and recognition of the EIFF’s premier position amongst international film festivals. Creative Scotland continues to support the Festival and congratulates it on such a strong appointment.’

Having successfully appointed a new Artistic Director and seen through the consolidation of the CMI, Gavin Miller, Chief Executive Officer, has stepped down and a recruitment process for a new CEO for the CMI will begin soon.

Leslie Hills thanked Gavin Miller for his work and added: ‘As we say goodbye to Gavin Miller we would like to thank him for the great deal he has achieved in his time at the CMI and to wish him well.’

Gavin Miller said: ‘He said: "It's been my privilege to serve the CMI over the past 18 months. There is never an easy time to leave a company that you’ve put your heart and soul into redefining and re-engineering, but I feel now is a good moment to step back and to pursue other interests.

‘I'm proud of what we've accomplished in what have been some very challenging times and circumstances: a rapid integration of a new company, completing a company-wide restructure, securing necessary and new forms of investment and setting out a strategy and plan for a new force in film and moving image for Scotland.’

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  • Richard Callaghan Wednesday 5th October, 2011 / 19:46 GMT

    Where's the 'like' button on here...

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