The competition programme is based on a careful preselection of films by the dramaturgy team which maps the current production over the entire year and, besides the individually registered competition films, the team also vigorously approaches productions active in the scientific documentary film. The Festival annually registers several thousand films from all over the world from which the dramaturgy team selects those to be submitted in the Festival competition sections. During the Festival, the professional juries consisting of both Czech and foreign filmmakers, producers, scientists and journalists select the winner of each category. The Festival visitors then give out the Audience Award. The winning films of each category are screened on the last day of the Festival in all screening venues.
The dramaturgy team also annually prepares the entire non-competition programme, the so-called programme sections. The Festival programme sections are always focused on the topic of that year’s driving force of society (in recent years, these were, for example, Dependency on Oceans and Technologies, Utopia/Dystopia, Space & Place on Use of Space We Live In etc.) Based on the selected topic, each dramaturge prepares its own programme section and selects films of the highest quality from prestigious European as well as global production companies. The main programme also includes lectures and presentations by leading scientists. Each year, we try to reflect on topics which are the current driving force of the society and are, in our opinion, fundamental for the further development of society and human progress.
The accompanying programme offers the AFO geeks new events and adventures from the world of science and film; not only during the Festival but all year long. The Festival fans can look forward to various exhibitions, workshops, special screenings or Festival info point in the KOMA modular construction. We let our imagination run wild in order to provide our visitors with a truly unique experience. In previous Festival years, you could notice the giant ice cube with the Festival design at Horní náměstí, experience virtual reality in Auditorium Maximum, admire the graffiti and street art in the streets of Olomouc, enjoy the outdoor screenings in the square, taste special scientific drinks or explore the possibilities of 3D printing.
Music is also a kind of science. Each year, we follow the best of the Czech and international music scene and we combine the musical masterpieces with the current Festival programme topic.
If you want to make sure not to miss anything, you can buy a full-week accreditation on all performances or buy a one-day ticket directly on the spot. The music programme will be beating mainly at the Corpus Christi Chapel in the Atrium of the Arts Centre of Palacký University, or “Konvikt”, then at the Courtyard Garden or as part of the accompanying programme in the city streets. The AFO afterparty traditionally takes place in Metro Chill-out Club.
The AFO Junior programme section is designed for the youngest AFO visitors. In this section, we prepare themed workshops, 3D projections of top 3D films from BBC and other accompanying events in cooperation with our Festival partners. The AFO Junior section cooperates with the Na Cucky Theatre where the visitors can get accredited and register their children on the individual workshops. A special Festival programme for children is also offered by Fort Science in cooperation with ČT:D TV channel. Children can enjoy a creative workshop with sharks about sharks and for real sharks; the pedagogue and children storybook author Andrea Hanáčková prepared a playful afternoon Wild Animal Gang (Gang divokejch zvířatek) for children over 8 years and Ondřej Jiráček, a prominent actor from the Na Cucky Theatre, prepared an interactive workshop and the Fort Science offered an excursion into the secrets of virtual reality.
Echoes & AFO Cinema
Dozens of popular science documentaries are presented by AFO each fall in cinemas all across the Czech Republic and abroad. Series of film and science AFO Cinema evenings are organised by Academia Film Olomouc in traditional cooperation with the Metropol Cinema in Olomouc. In the past, you could witness the fate of exploratory probes Voyager II and Voyager I sent into space by NASA in August and September 1977, plant potatoes with Matt Damon on Mars in the special screening of The Martian or watch Denis Villeneuve’s visionary science fiction Blade Runner 2049 and Arrival.
“The AFO Cinema fulfils exactly those goals which it has established for itself at the beginning, i.e. to transform Academia Film Olomouc into a permanent and competent part of the Olomouc cultural space for the whole year, not just for one week. The audience interest in this event has truly surprised us and we will continue to prepare more screenings of the best from the popular science genre in next years,” Jakub Ráliš, the Director of AFO53, summarises the role of the project.