While the Edinburgh International Film Festival won't open until June 15 (site), its cross-platform initiative, Project: New Cinephilia, has launched today. Curators Damon Smith and Kate Taylor have been furiously building a unique microsite hosting "original essays, roundtable discussions, and film-related artworks by a roster of international contributors." The first item on the agenda, of course, is to begin work towards a definition of "New Cinephilia"; Damon and Kate have sketched the historical background, while Girish Shambu sinks his formidable teeth into a profile of the 21st century cinephile. Chris Fujiwara, meantime, opens a debate "on the current situation of film criticism, cinephilia, and academic film studies" in the form of a response to David Bordwell.
Damon and Kate: "As we've noted in our Curatorial Statement, the festival-sponsored conversation about film criticism has in recent years focused mainly on the perennial 'future of criticism' question and print-versus-blogger debates. While these welcome bursts of dialogue shall not soon be exhausted, we felt it was important to get past the hand-wringing diatribes and open the discussion to include those who, more generally, have a genuine passion for movies, regardless of professional affiliation."
That would be you. MUBI is proud to be hosting discussions sparked by this Project and we urge you to join in. The conversation's already begun on Girish's piece here and Chris Fujiwara's here.