The Locarno Film Festival has appointed Lili Hinstin as its next artistic director, replacing Carlo Chatrian who is leaving to become Berlin co-chief.

Hinstin will take up her appointment from December 1, 2018 after she was elected by a unanimous decision from the festival’s board. Since 2013 she has been artistic director of the Entrevues Belfort – Festival International du Film in France. From 2005 to 2009 she was responsible for the film-related activities of the Academy of France in Rome, and from 2011 to 2013 she was also deputy artistic director of the Paris–based international Film Festival Cinéma du Réel.

Festival president Marco Solari commented on her appointment, “Lili Hinstin emerged as the candidate who more than any other corresponded to the profile sought by the presidency, the executive board and the board of governors for the person to be in charge of the artistic direction of the Locarno Festival. The development of a festival is never linear – it’s always a process that takes place in several stages. Our objective now is that the festival’s coming editions and the 75th anniversary will be a decisive step in reaching 2022 with a festival that, while never denying its past, will also have interpreted the ongoing changes in world society and in filmmaking in general, thanks to the expertise and sensibilities of its artistic director and the efficiency of its operating officer and their teams.”

Following a period in which most of the world’s leading festivals have been spearheaded by men, Locarno now follows Berlin’s suit in having a woman at the helm. Berlin will be overseen by Chatrian and Mariette Rissenbeek after next year’s edition.

Swiss festival Locarno, which has been overseen by Chatrian since 2012, is a well-liked and well-attended late summer event which has a good roster of international art-house and some more mainstream movies. The festival offers a strong lineup of industry events and development and funding opportunities. The 72nd Locarno Festival will take place from August 7-17, 2019.