Chris Fujiwara will be stepping down from his role at the Edinburgh International Film Festival after his reign as artistic director for three consecutive festivals. Deputy Artistic Director Diane Henderson and her team will be in charge of programming for the 2015 festival.
While at EIFF, Fujiwara’s direction led to a 33 percent increase in admissions — its most recent festival attracted 46,000 people in 2014. On his leave, Chris Fujiwara said, “It’s been a genuine honor to work with the team in Edinburgh and contribute to the rebirth of EIFF over the last three years. However, I have decided to step down from my role at the Festival to pursue other activities.”
Fujiara’s colleagues praised him for his contributions to the festival and look forward to what is coming next for EIFF. Ken Hay, Chief Executive of EIFF, said, “Chris has played an instrumental part in reigniting EIFF, for which the Board of Trustees and I are very grateful. We are sorry to see him go, but are excited and ambitious for the future of EIFF, and we look forward to finding a fitting successor.”
Bob Last, Chair of EIFF, added, “Chris Fujiwara’s programming has reminded EIFF and our audiences of how important and inspiring it is to be challenged by technique, by content, by a diversity of view points, and by innovation. As we reach out to wider audiences we will remain grateful to Chris for his contribution to EIFF at one of its most challenging moments.”