Famously, seventeen people attended the opening night of the first Film
International Rotterdam on June 28, 1972.
An initiative of the
Rotterdam Arts Foundation, Film International (later: International
Film Festival Rotterdam) showcased films purchased for distribution to
the newly established circuit of art house cinemas in The Netherlands.
For the 1973 edition, the festival moved its dates to February and
attracted over 7,000 visitors.
Driving force, famous figurehead and
inspirational director until his early death in 1988, Hubert Bals gave
the festival its solid reputation of commitment to and active support
of independent cinema as well as of a welcoming meeting place for
filmmakers, audiences, film professionals and film critics.
subsequent directorships of Anne Head (1989), Marco Müller (1990-1991),
Emile Fallaux (1992-1996), Simon Field (1996-2004), Sandra den Hamer
(2000-2007) and currently Rutger Wolfson, the IFFR grew out to become
one the largest audience driven film festivals in the world, while
maintaining its focus on innovative filmmaking by talented newcomers
and established auteurs as well as on presenting cutting edge media
V2_ has been part of the IFFR's satellite program since 1995, with an event or installation in the V2_space.