With festivals, albums, concerts, and more being pushed to the fall or canceled entirely due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Venice Film Festival is sticking to its plans for September. In a recent interview with the Italian wire service ANSA, confirmed by Variety, Venice Biennial president Roberto Cicutto once again confirmed the September 2 – 12 dates for the 77th Venice Film Festival and downplayed plans for a Venice x Cannes Film Festival collab. Out on another glorious European coast, strict social distancing regulations forced the Cannes Film Festival to postpone this year’s event, once to mid-July and a second time indefinitely. While Cannes director Thierry Fremaux suggested to Variety that Venice Film Fest and Cannes may combine their efforts, Roberto Cicutto told ANSA that there is no “hypothesis” for a collaboration at this time. “With Cannes, everything is possible, but I find it disconcerting that Thierry Fremaux keeps saying he is continuing to examine the situation and does not say what he wants to do,” he said, later adding “We are going forward with our program, and if Cannes is still thinking (about their course of action) then there is no dialogue.”
Meanwhile, Venice is exploring options to make sure its September festival can still happen, including a digital option for foreign press and potentially using cinemas. They’ve given themselves until May to figure all that out, which seems to be the new rule of thumb for all coronavirus-related timelines. Remember back when it was April? As the oldest film festival in the world, Venice may be at a higher risk for the coronavirus, but it is not going down without a fight.