Emily Avila.

Filmmaker and curator Emily Avila has been appointed as the festival director of Brisbane International Film Festival (BIFF).

Avila has a background in festival management, having previously been artistic director of the Heart of Gold International Film Festival from 2016 to 2018.

She has also held roles various roles at The Ethics Centre; BIFF; West End Film Festival; Essential Media and Entertainment, and Sydney Festival.

Avila’s appointment follows the announcement that Film Fantastic will partner with Screen Queensland to deliver BIFF from 2021 to 2023, with a national recruitment search conducted for the director position.

She will commence in the role this month to ready the festival for late October.

“BIFF is a festival that is dear to me. So many of my favourite cinema experiences belong to this festival. To be entrusted with the next iteration of BIFF is a huge honour and one I do not take lightly,” Avila said.

“Our program will seek to engage new audiences with the festival and bring films to Brisbane that delight our city’s cinephiles. We will scour the globe for films that resonate and look inward as well, at films that have sprung from Brisbane and our local creatives. There will be something for everyone, but most importantly, if you love film, for eleven days in October that love will be shared by our city as BIFF brings many more unforgettable cinema experiences to Brisbane.”

Chair of Film Fantastic Sue-Anne Chapman said the board was delighted to welcome Avila and to usher in a new era for BIFF.

“Emily’s experience in festival management and her interest in audience development is an exciting opportunity to deliver a fresh new chapter of BIFF for film lovers and screen industry professionals.

“The Film Fantastic Board is delighted to be working with Emily to realise the longstanding vision of BIFF and deliver on the excitement and anticipation that Brisbane audiences have for their city’s film festival.”

Screen Queensland CEO Kylie Munnich said Avila’s dedication to developing strong relationships with the community and nurturing local filmmaker talent will bring a new perspective to BIFF and continue to shape its future as Queensland’s flagship film event.

Brisbane International Film Festival will run October 21-31.

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