Rifkin’s Festival: Woody Allen’s New Film Opens San Sebastian Film Fest

The world premiere of Woody Allen’s new movie, Rifkin’s Festival, will open, out of competition, the 68th edition of the San Sebastian Festival on September 18, organizers unveiled on Thursday.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by David Fisher/REX/Shutterstock (4775087aa)
Woody Allen
‘Irrational Man’ photocall, 68th Cannes Film Festival, France – 15 May 2015

The film, produced by The Mediapro Studio, Gravier Productions and Wildside, was shot last summer in San Sebastian and other nearby towns.

The movie tells the story of a married American couple who go to the San Sebastian festival and “get caught up in the magic of the event, the beauty and charm of the city and the fantasy of movies.” She ends up having an affair with a French movie director, while he falls in love with a Spanish woman who lives in the city.

Described as a “romantic comedy,” the film was written and directed by Allen. It stars Elena Anaya (Wonder Woman), Louis Garrel (An Officer and a Spy), Gina Gershon (The Insider), Sergi López (Pan’s Labyrinth), Wallace Shawn (Marriage Story), and Christoph Waltz (Spectre, Django Unchained).

This is the second time that Allen will open the San Sebastian Festival, having raised the curtain for the event in 2004 with Melinda and Melinda. That year, the festival presented him with its Donostia Award and dedicated a retrospective to his work.

The Spanish film festival’s relationship with Allen dates back to the late 1970s when Allen’s film Manhattan (1979) screened there, followed by Zelig (1983) and Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993), among others.

In recent years, a number of his films have played in the festival’s Perlak section, including Match Point (2005), Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008), Whatever Works (2009) and Irrational Man (2015).