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CIFF announces ‘hybrid’ festival running Sept. 24 to Oct. 4 featuring online streaming and in-cinema experiences

Add the Calgary International Film Festival to the list of events moving online amid the COVID-19 pandemic — but not entirely.

Organizers have announced that their 2020 fest, running from Sept 24 to Oct. 4, will be a “hybrid-model that delivers both in-cinema and virtual experiences.”

There will be more than 90 films screened in-person over the 11 days, and for those still not ready to venture out and into a theatre, around 80 feature films and shorts will available for streaming in the comfort of your own living room, rumpus room, patio, etc.

CIFF is also going out of its way to make the festival affordable for all, with cheaper single tickets, ticket bundles and a new a “Friends with Benefits” membership that allows perks and deals throughout the year.

“Our greatest aim this year is to ensure that every film lover in Alberta can take in the festival — from at home with streaming, or at one of our festival venues,” Steve Schroeder, CIFF’s Executive Director, said in a release. “We think this year’s bundles and reduced ticket prices will ensure no one misses out and new audiences can experience what CIFF has to offer.

“Alberta submissions in particular have been incredibly high. We can’t wait to come together as a province and celebrate our local industry alongside the best of this year’s international and Canadian cinema.”

For safety purposes, there will be no galas or out-of-town guests at this year’s festival, with further safety offered by the promise that “social distancing will be guaranteed with increased time between screenings and limited seating and capacity in the cinema.”

The festival lineup will be announced in early September.

Ticket bundles and memberships are on sale now with the pricing as follows:

3-Ticket Bundle: Perfect for busy schedules and first-time attendees ($27)

5-Ticket Bundle: For a classic film festival experience ($45).

11-Ticket Bundle: Catch a movie every day of the festival ($95).

20-Ticket Bundle: For CIFF’s most hardcore film fans ($170).

Single tickets will be $11 and can be used for both in-cinema and online.

(Please Note: There will be no student/senior discounts for paid ticket products this year or paid Festival Passes.)

For more information including how the festival is adapting to life in the age of COVID, please go to https://www.ciffcalgary.ca/.

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