The Diagonale, the Festival of Austrian Film, is the central presentation and discussion platform for Austrian filmmaking. The festival has been taking place in Graz every spring since 1998 and has established itself as a popular meeting place for both the public and the film industry. This encounter with Austrian film in all its manifestations will excite, challenge, entertain, widen horizons and in its engagement with sociopolitical and culturopolitical issues surrounding film it is also a critical assessment.
The Diagonale takes place from 17th to 22nd of March 2009 in Graz, for the first time under the artistic direction of the curator and film theorist Barbara Pichler. The film makers, their work and the opportunity for a lively exchange with the audience and with the Austrian and international industry are the festival's focus.
The 2009 Diagonale will present altogether 237 films and videos as part of 130 screenings in the 4 festival cinemas. The festival is accompanied by an extensive additional programme with exhibitions, discussions of political issues surrounding film and culture, workshops, Diagonale's own nightline, various receptions and the opening night itself.
And at the Diagonale awards ceremony the most important Austrian film prizes with a total worth of over € 170,000 will be presented, including the grand prize of € 15,000 for both the best Austrian feature film and documentary endowed by the province of Styria.
The Diagonale's extensive selected programme comprises of 98 films and is assembled from around 500 submissions of all genres and lengths: short films and experimental films, as well as video, but also feature films and feature-length documentary works. 29 films are being premiered in Graz, including 23 Austrian premieres.
In addition the Show Case is presenting 15 full-length feature and documentary films that were on release in Austrian cinemas last year and in this way showing the vibrant diversity co-production landscape.