< Arctic Open 2021 – Greetings>

Alexander Tsybulsky Governor of Arkhangelsk Region

Dear friends, participants and viewers,

Arctic Open Film Festival embraces many domains by supporting various creative initiatives.
Alongside its primary purpose of introducing the local residents and guests to modern trends in filmmaking and cinematography, it involves the professional community. By bringing cinematographers and filmmakers together, Arctic Open serves as a platform for providing knowledge and expert assessment, sharing success and finding partners and associates.
Arctic Open has, undoubtedly, become a brand of Arkhangelsk Region. As it becomes known to the international community, it helps to position our home region as a center of cultural attraction and to make it visible to other countries and their nations.
Its agenda spanning meet-the-artist sessions, exhibition projects, business collaborations, workshops and training, Arctic Open IFF represents a major cultural and film event.
I am glad that the festival has many partners. It is being contributed by people and organizations who care about modern cinema and promotion of the Russian filmmaking, importantly in municipalities. Realizing the importance of the festival for local development, the Government of Arkhangelsk Region has been a partner and contributor to Arctic Open throughout all years of its existence. Such venues as state-owned museums, libraries and community centers offer Arctic Open their premises every year.
In 2021, Arctic Open organizers again achieved a program where viewers are full participants and have a choice of films to their liking – the films that evoke feelings and give food for thought to all of us.
The audience is invited to see some of the most captivating releases and attend creative sessions with directors and film people at 15 venues in Arkhangelsk and its municipalities.
I thank everyone who contributes to promoting Arctic Open and invite you to watch good films!

Elena Kudryashova
Rector of NARFU

Dear friends,

It is the fifth time that Arkhangelsk hosts big Arctic cinema. I sincerely congratulate you all with 2021 Arctic Open IFF happening despite the problems caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Arctic Open is a wonderful project. It continues to bring together talented, unorthodox filmmakers, who are based in the northern countries, on Arkhangelsk land. This year’s festival program is no exception: the organizers have selected 50 films – full-length feature films, shorts, animated films and documentaries by filmmakers in Russia, Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Finland, Norway, Sweden and the USA. The festival received a total of more than 1,500 submissions from 98 countries. This means that the Arctic garners attention as an arena for not only political debate but also artistic and creative endeavor.

The festival is keen to remind that the Arctic’s biggest wealth is its people…the people who have their own stories, problems, achievements … Getting the Arctic closer – as goes the motto the festival – means it is important to make the peoples of the Arctic visible and be able to take a look at their world through their eyes. And films, from around the world, are what gives this opportunity. The North that they depict is not as cold as we perceive it. They follow stories of love and friendship, of support and discoveries, of revelations and simple joys of everyday life…

I am convinced that this film festival will continue to facilitate the cultural exchange among the Arctic countries, which is extremely important on the eve of Russia’s chairmanship in the Arctic Council in 2021. In promoting its Arctic development, our country is guided by and seeks friendly relations and cooperation. I have every reason to believe that the Arctic Countries Film Festival ARCTIC OPEN 2021 will mark the Russian presidency of the Arctic Council as a landmark cultural event and will continue to remain a source of knowledge about the Arctic peoples and their life.

I hope our viewers will benefit from this long-awaited meeting with good films and the pleasant discoveries they promise!

Roman Karmanov
Presidential Grant Foundation for Cultural Initiatives, Director General

Dear participants and guests,
Dear northerners,

The project Man and the Arctic. Cultural Project: The 5th Arctic Countries Film Festival ARCTIC OPEN holds a grant from the Presidential Foundation for Cultural Initiatives’ first competition.
I would like to extend my congratulations not only the Arctic Open team but also all the people of Arkhangelsk.
Competently organized, with people-centered approach, meaningful concept and focus on local development, the large cultural events are undoubtedly sources of creative energy and vibrant talents.
I know that despite its young age, your festival has already won the hearts of international film community and the local residents, many of whom take keen interest in independent films being produced by their Arctic neighbors and would like to promote development in their homeland.
The film festivals of today boast potential not only as significant film events, but also as sources of societal benefits – by offering training and serving as sources of civil initiatives designed to improve their home areas’ cultural infrastructure.

This is exactly the goal being pursued by Arctic Open, a cultural project hosted by the glorious city of Arkhangelsk in the north of the European part of Russia..

I wish all participants – beginner filmmakers and renowned artists – cordial meetings with like-minded people, vibrant impressions, new acquaintances and creative collaborations. I hope the audience will find the festival an exciting place to visit and be filled with the new insights promised by its meet-the-artist sessions and the amazing world of independent films.

Alison LeClair
Canada’s Ambassador to the Russian Federation

Canada and Russia are inextricably linked as Northern neighbors and as the largest Arctic nations. Our collaboration comes naturally — our peoples bound by our common experiences of an often harsh climate, vast and rugged geography, and the spirit of resilience that northerners share.

Bringing people together through cultural expression and creativity is extraordinarily important as a way of understanding ourselves and each other, of recognizing our shared humanity, and helping us see better what unites us. As a representative of Canada to the Russian Federation, I am proud to contribute to the vital mission of the Arctic Open Film Festival by presenting Canadian films and making Canada closer by sharing my northern vision and legacy.

I wish the Arctic Open Film Festival a successful event.



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