Any city with artistic ambitions deserves its fair share of film festivals. And among such offerings in Vienna, the biggest and most prestigious is the Viennale.
- One of Europe’s top film festivals
- Premieres, galas, prizes and stars (you know the deal)
- Programme spans genres and formats
- Opportunity to see many films not otherwise shown in Austria
- Most films either in English or with English subtitles
- 2021 dates: Oct 21 – 31
- See also: English-language cinemas | Film festivals
A truly international festival
(Photo from the opening of the Viennale 2020; © Viennale/Alexander Tuma)
First held in 1960, the Viennale ticks all the right boxes on the film festival checklist.
A chance to see (pre-release) films from around the world? Yep.
A sprinkling of national (and, sometimes, international) premieres? Yep.
A smorgasbord of genres, styles and formats? Yep.
Special themes? Yep. The retrospectives shown at the Austrian Film Museum deserve a special mention. Other festival highlights normally include various cinematographic tracks and featured directors.
A complementary programme of events? Yep.
Guest stars? Yep (in numbers).
The Viennale doesn’t quite reach Cannes levels of star power (who does?), but you can expect various masters and mistresses of their trade from the film business. In 2018, for example, the Oscar and BAFTA award-winning Tilda Swinton attended.
And there are awards, too, not least the Vienna Film Prize (with a special jury prize) and the Fipresci Prize (awarded by the International Federation of Film Critics). The latter award went to a Polish animation by debut director Mariusz Wilczyński in 2020: Zabij to i wyjedź z tego miasta (Kill It and Leave This Town).
Once available, the official website obviously has the full programme and location details.
2021 dates and tickets
The Viennale runs provisionally from October 21st to October 31st. You typically buy tickets for showings etc. at the Viennale website, which also has information on alternative ticket sources (such as participating cinemas).
How to get to the Viennale cinemas
These are the traditional Viennale cinemas. However, extra screenings took place at a handful of other venues in 2020, so 2021 may also be different:
Nearest subway stations are Stubentor (on the U3) and Stadtpark (on the U4). The Weihburggasse stop for tram line 2 is practically outside the cinema.
Address: Parkring 12, 1010 Vienna
Stadtkino im Künstlerhaus
The nearest subway station is Karlsplatz on the U1, U2 and U4 lines. Trams 1, 2, 71, 62 and D also drop you very close to the cinema at the Karlsplatz/Oper stop.
Akademiestraße 13, 1010 Vienna
Take the U1 or U4 subway to Schwedenplatz. The cinema’s local tram stop is Julius-Raab-Platz, fed by trams 1 and 2.
Address: Uraniastraße 1, 1010 Vienna
Austrian Film Museum
A quick walk from either Karlsplatz (U1, U2, U4) or Stephansplatz (U1 and U3). The Albertinaplatz bus stop is outside, used by the 2A bus route.
Address: Augustinerstraße 1, 1010 Vienna
Sandwiched between Karlsplatz and Stephansplatz stations, as with the Austrian Film Museum.
Address: Johannesgasse 4, 1010 Vienna