Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival is back for its 40th anniversary

Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival is back for its 40th anniversary
BIFFF poster in Brussels. Credit: Maïthé Chini/The Brussels Times

The Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival (BIFFF) is back this year after a pandemic-induced two-year hiatus. In 2020, it was cancelled, while in 2021, it was held entirely online. From 29 August to 10 September 2022, the festival celebrates its 40th anniversary for fans of horror, thrillers, fantasy, and science fiction.

Sixty films are being screened this year, including cult films such as the Addams Family as well as the newest releases of the Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon.

Other films include 'American Badass', a retrospective of Michael Madsen, an actor known for appearing in several Quentin Tarantino films. The festival will also screen new films such as the horror story 'American Carnage', which depicts an overzealous American governor playing the infamous zero-tolerance card by deciding to arrest all the children of illegal immigrants.

In addition to the screenings, the festival will host several events including the Vampire Ball where make-up artists will be on-site to turn guests into these mythical creatures.

Other events will include family-friendly screenings for children aged 5-9, date night films for horror lovers, and screenings of the horror film Scream. There will be a theatrical performance of Alien followed by a Q&A.

Last year's edition took place online, something organisers are adamant will not be repeated. Credit: BIFFF

For its 40th birthday, the BIFFF will present a retrospective of its previous exhibitions. Many artists - including painters, sculptors, and artists but above all festival aficionados- answered the call to celebrate fantasy and cinema. Events agenda here.

The festival opened with the dystopian science fiction movie Vesper from 2022 about a society that experienced environmental collapse. The festival's closing film is Cube, a Japanese horror story from 2021, in which a group of people find themselves in a cube and desperately need to find a way out.

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Over the years, many notable filmmakers and actors have visited the festival, such as Christopher Lee, Oliver Reed, Peter Fonda, Anthony Perkins, George Romero, Giger, Peter Jackson, Jean-Claude Van Damme, and Clive Barker.

The festival is taking place from 29 August until 10 September at Brussels Expo at Heysel. During the festival, three cinemas will show over a hundred feature films and shorts. More information here.

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