We know many of you have been waiting for this so without further ado, here they are – the surprise screenings.
First up, the repeat sessions
Surprise Screening 1 at the Forum will be a repeat session of Mistaken For Strangers
Surprise Screening 4 at GU 4 will be a repeat session of Lygon Street – Si Parla Italiano
Surprise Screening 3 at GU 5 is the previously announced repeat session of Tim Winton's The Turning
As for the new announcements ...
Surprise Screening 2 at GU 6 will be Thanks For Sharing
Surprise Screening 5 at GU 3 will be In a World...
Surprise Screening 6 at ACMI 2 will be A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III
All surprise screenings are on at 11am on Sunday 11 August, and all are now open for booking. The exception is Tim Winton's The Turning, which begins at 10am and is currently on standby, having been released for sale several days ago.
So there you have it, our surprise screenings for 2013. Except ... this year we're going to be doing a second round of surprise screenings! Keep your eyes peeled for the announcement in the coming days!
Venus and Serena Williams are not only the most successful sisters in tennis, they're also amongst the most successful athletes ever. In Maiken Baird and Michelle Major's revealing documentary, the highs (gold at the London Olympics) and lows (injury and illness) on and off the court are captured over an eventful year.
Michelle Major is a guest of the festival, and arrived in Melbourne recently. She answered a few questions for MIFF ahead of the film's first screening.
Read the Q&A.
From 8pm tonight in the Festival Lounge, join The Pixel Playground, a night dedicated to the humble pixel and playing games. Battle in friendly competition and show off your skills playing all the classics on the Lounge’s big screen. DJs Gamera and Kyonshi spin tunes from your digital childhood.
Technophobes fear not: there’ll be plenty of board games on offer too!
The Forum's resident statues will be sharing their glorious surrounds with a special new friend, especially for MIFF! Made of Maltesers, The Thinker has settled into the Festival Lounge for the duration of the festival.
But what is he thinking about? Is he wondering how many Maltesers he just ate? Is he pondering how he can get more Maltesers? Come and admire The Thinker, Instagram a shot of yourself with him and take a guess at how many Maltesers he's made of for your chance to win a double pass to the Closing Night Film and party!
Click here for full details.
Director Katrin Gebbe made one of the most polarising films at this year's Cannes Film Festival, Nothing Bad Can Happen.
"We expected it to be controversial," she told MIFF. "And that was what happened. We had boos and cheers, escapees and long standing ovations. It was intense! I think we stired up a hornets' nest. And that is what artists should do."
Will it be the same at MIFF? Attend one of this weekend's sessions to find out. Katrin will be at both sessions to answer your questions, but we put a few to her ahead of the screenings. Read the interview.
Warm up with MIFF's legendary Speed Dating, at the Festival Lounge on Monday 29 July, from 7pm, with 35 and under, 35+ and queer editions throughout the night. Hosted by experienced love provocateur, Kitty Bang, it's a night of speed dating especially for film lovers.
A true pioneer for lust, love and all those passionate moments in between, Kitty is renowned for her matchmaking magic. So if you’re ready to share your passion for film and culture, then join us for a night of fun, friendship and maybe more. Meet Kitty, and perhaps the partner of your dreams at MIFF 2013! Book here!
The films have arrived, the volunteers are trained, the venues are ready and the MIFF office is excitedly making sure everything is in place, both for tonight’s Australian premiere and MIFF 2013 Opening Night screening of I'm So Excited! and for the next 17 days of back-to-back films!
From today, you'll be able to vote for films (after you've seen them, of course!) and fill out our survey to go in the running for some great prizes. Stay up to date on any session changes here, and make sure you've liked us on Facebook, are following us on Twitter and have signed up to our Widescreen newsletter for all the latest information.
Let the films begin!
If there's one thing Melburnians love as much as film, it's dining out. So it's only natural that MIFF should team up with a quality selection of bars, restaurants and cafes to give film fans a taste of what the city has to offer. Pick up a copy of our Food & Film Guide from the Box Office or venues around town, or check out the special offers available to MIFF ticket holders.
Your playlist could feature songs from your favourite film moments, or inspired by MIFF films you've seen. The winning playlists will be played in the Festival Lounge each night, alongside our MIFF filmmaker playlists.
No one likes a talker in the theatre. But outside the cinema, that's another matter! MIFF's Talking Pictures program lets you discuss, question and argue all things cinematic with the festival's filmmakers and personalities – including US snowboarding champ Kevin Pearce, star of The Crash Reel, a film The Hollywood Reporter called "thrilling, compelling ... required viewing"; award-winning director Ivan Sen and his Mystery Road star Aaron Pedersen; Red Obsession director Warwick Ross with Masterchef's George Calombaris and celebrity chefs Ben Shewry and Guy Grossi; and Oscar winner Giuseppe Tornatore, in conversation with David Stratton.
In an Australian first, each film screening in MIFF's TeleScope section will have an extra 'online screening room' accessible from anywhere within Australia, for 24 hours following its first cinema screening. For more information or to purchase tickets for the online screenings, please visit the online screenings information page.
The full MIFF 2013 program is now available to all! We're sure most of you in Melbourne have your mittens on a print copy that was inserted in The Age today. If not, never fear - peruse the program online consisting of 310 films from over 50 countries. We have 5 new program spotlights for 2013 including North Korea on Film, New Arabic Cinema, American Independents, Activism on Film and Italian Giallo. You will really be needing that eMini pass at least, there's so many amazing films to choose from! Tickets can be booked online or, if you're old school, visit our friendly staff in person at the MIFF Box Office, Forum Theatre (154 Flinders Street). Click here for opening hours or for queries call 03 9662 3722.