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About the festival

Our mission

Nowadays, CINEMANIA is considered the most important French-language film festival in North America, and the oldest of its kind. Founded in 1995, every November CINEMANIA gathers an eclectic selection of nearly sixty fiction films, as well as documentaries and short movies. During their last edition, in November 2022, the Festival reached 94,000 admissions over 12 days, bringing together 112 films and around 130 screenings.

Focusing on gathering people, the annual selection is enhanced by master classes, conferences and special events, while our red carpets are courted by the greatest personalities in Quebec and international cinema.

Our non-profit organization plays an active role in the vitality and cultural influence of Montreal and Quebec's province. Our films come from all over the world, from Quebec, Canada, France, Switzerland, Senegal, Belgium, Algeria, Morocco, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Luxembourg, Central Africa... CINEMANIA creates a dynamic, modern and lively platform for contemporary creation, with the aim of reinforcing links to the international Francophonie.

CINEMANIA has emblematic venues : the Cinéma Impérial (our headquarters), Cinéma du MuséeCinémathèque québécoise, Cinéma du Parc, Espace Saint-Denis, Sofitel Hotel Le Carré Doré.

All CINEMANIA films are presented with English subtitles for greater accessibility. Programming is based on the most important international film festivals. The aim is to create an exclusive annual window based on Cannes, Locarno, Venice, Toronto, Namur and Angoulême film festivals. Each edition of CINEMANIA features a number of prestigious guests, including a guest of honor for a retrospective of the artist's work never seen before in Canada.

Our festival is a family event for everyone, where the audience is the first judge: the Air Canada Prix du Public (formerly the Prix du Public Mel Hoppenheim) rewards the audience's favorite film. On a competitive level, the selection is divided into four main categories: the "Faces of Francophonie" Competition, the "Films from Quebec" Competition, the "Documentaries" Competition and the "Short movies" Competition. Each competition has its own jury.

Our festival is also a not-to-be-missed meeting for film professionals: cinema owners, producers, distributors, representatives of film institutions in francophone countries, programmers and festival directors, who are invited to take part in the "CINEMANIA Pro" program that brings the "La Concorde francophone" network to life.

CINEMANIA is also committed to developing and supporting image education programs in Quebec. Beyond the screenings, CINEMANIA is hosting a major conference bringing together teachers from Quebec and all over the world, as well as players from associations and schools, to discuss the challenges of film education through a series of conferences and workshops.

Commitments and code of conduct

We are committed to fight gender inequalities and promote creators and producers who are shaping tomorrow's cinema. CINEMANIA has always promoted the perspectives of women and gender minorities, indigenous people, LGBTQIA2S+ people and individuals from disadvantaged groups.

CINEMANIA recognizes that their activities take place on a first-nation territory, which has never been ceded. The Festival recognizes the Kanien'kehá:ka Nation as custodians of the lands and waters on which we gather. Tiohtiá:ke / Montréal is historically known as a gathering place for many First Nations, and today is home to a diverse indigenous population as well as other peoples.

CINEMANIA Film Festival is committed to providing an exceptional cinematic experience in a respectful and inclusive environment. We are committed to preserving an inclusive and accessible cinematic experience for all spectators. We pay particular attention to the needs of people with reduced mobility (PRM) and those with special needs. Our screening venues are equipped to accommodate wheelchair users, with installations to facilitate their movement and comfort. Moreover, our teams are on hand to provide any assistance required to ensure a pleasant experience for everyone.

We value diversity of voices and perspectives, and are committed to creating a space where everyone feels welcome and respected. Our code of conduct promotes mutual respect, zero tolerance for any form of discrimination or harassment, and a safe atmosphere for all participants. By attending CINEMANIA, you adhere to our values of integrity, open-mindedness and respect for others. Join us to celebrate francophone cinema while contributing to a positive environment for everyone.

CINEMANIA's history


Birth /// For 5 consecutive days at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Montrealer Maidy Teitelbaum organizes the 1st edition of a French-language film festival with English subtitles. CINEMANIA is born !


Grow /// The 4th edition of the festival becomes an 11-day event, allowing CINEMANIA to present many more films. French film star Isabelle Huppert presents L'ÉCOLE DE LA CHAIR, by renowned director Benoît Jacquot. Montreal medias make CINEMANIA a permanent reference on the cultural scene, and the 1st Audience Award is presented thanks to the support of Mel Hoppenheim.


Surrounding ourselves /// Having reached a higher level of maturity, CINEMANIA was able to secure the support of prestigious sponsors such as the Sofitel Montréal Le Carré Doré and Air Canada.


Moving /// A milestone is reached! After 10 years of becoming a well-established festival, CINEMANIA had to move to accommodate its growing number of loyal festival-goers. The huge, historic Cinéma Impérial is the ideal venue to enhance the festival experience.


Paying tribute /// CINEMANIA begins a collaboration with the Cinémathèque québécoise, enabling us to welcome even more prestigious guests. This new venue now hosts our retrospectives : Cédric Klapisch (2011), Sandrine Bonnaire (2012), Anouk Aimée (2013), Lambert Wilson (2014), Françoise Fabian (2015), Nicole Garcia (2016), Michel Hazanavicius (2017), Olivier Gourmet (2018).


In its twenties /// CINEMANIA embarks on several new projects for its 20th anniversary. The festival strengthens its position in the film industry, undertakes a major project of school screenings and expands its free summer film screenings in Montreal's public parks. The red carpet at the 20th CINEMANIA is walked by stars such as Lambert Wilson, Anne Fontaine and Laurent Lafitte.


Going francophone /// CINEMANIA continues to grow: in collaboration with SODEC, the festival hosts the Rencontres de coproduction francophone (RCF). This event brings together over 200 delegates from the francophone film industry. The festival welcomes renowned guests including Nicole Garcia, Virginie Efira, Soko and Raphaël Personnaz. Pierre Roy, former President of Astral Group's TV Channels, is elected new Chairman of the Board.


Record /// CINEMANIA offers a record number of 50 feature film premieres, with 67 screenings in 5 cinema theaters. Nearly twenty stars are invited to present their films at this 24th edition.


25 year-old /// The festival, which records its highest attendance ever with 28,000 spectators, brilliantly passes the milestone of twenty-five years of existence and once again affirms its commitment to francophone cinema. The French film PORTRAIT DE LA JEUNE FILLE EN FEU by prestigious Céline Sciamma and the Quebec feature ANTIGONE by Sophie Deraspe, both representing their respective countries in the 2020 Oscar Race, enhance the selection.


Becoming even stronger /// With the COVID-19 situation, CINEMANIA is embarking on a major digital shift by developing an online broadcasting platform hosting much of its programming. For the first time, viewers from coast to coast in Canada can watch films from the comfort of their own living rooms. The festival now runs for three weeks, combining virtual and physical screenings in its regular theaters, in compliance with current sanitary conditions. Finally, the festival has a new visual identity, recalling the enveloping magic of cinema and the need for dialogue between the great French-speaking cultural communities.


Perpetuate /// Luxembourg is in the spotlight, and the 22nd edition opens in the presence of Quebec's new Minister of Culture, Mathieu Lacombe, and Xavier Bettel, Prime Minister of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, at the head of an unprecedented delegation of 75 Luxembourg guests. Canadian feature CHIEN BLANC, by Anaïs Barbeau Lavalette, is the opening film, while the biggest names in contemporary cinema are welcomed: Lukas Dhont (CLOSE, Belgium), Sébastien Marnier (L'ORIGINE DU MAL, France), Cédric Klapisch (French co-president of the Jury), alongside Quebec actress Pascale Bussières, Denis Ménochet (AS BESTAS, France), Guillaume Lambert (NIAGARA, Quebec), Emmanuel Mouret (CHRONIQUES D'UNE LIAISON PASSAGÈRE, France), Marianne Farley (AU NORD D'ALBANY, Quebec), Clovis Cornillac (COULEURS DE L'INCENDIE, France). In the heart of the Quartier des spectacles, a large public installation is offered free of charge to spectators, while the second edition of the Grande soirée du court québécois is a huge success at the new Studio-Cabaret at Espace St-Denis. The festival launches CINEMANIA PRO, attracting no fewer than 50 international festival representatives from around the world. The 22nd edition attracts a total of 94,000 admissions.


The team is actively preparing the 29th edition, which will take place from November 1st to 12th, with a special focus on Switzerland. At the same time, the festival's activities are being exported abroad, notably to Andorra, where in May CINEMANIA presented several Quebec films and a delegation led by filmmaker Lawrence Côté-Collins (BUNGALOW).