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First Look 2020

Mar 11 — Mar 26, 2020

Please note: The on-site First Look 2020 festival was suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak, but some programs are continuing online. For information, visit First Look 2020 Online.

The ninth edition of First Look, the Museum’s acclaimed festival of innovative new international cinema, will include more than two dozen programs, featuring formally inventive new works that seek to redefine the art form while engaging in a wide range of subjects and styles. View trailer.

Opening Night, on March 11, features the New York premiere of Hubert Sauper’s Epicentro, recent winner of the Grand Jury Prize, World Cinema Documentary Competition at the 2020 Sundance FIlm Festival, with the director in person.

Closing Night, on March 15, features Midi Z’s Nina Wu, which premiered in the 2019 Cannes Un Certain Regard competition, with the director in person.

The full lineup features both documentary and narrative works, features and shorts, live performances and artist talks, works in progress and classics revisited, with work hailing from countries including Belgium, France, Ukraine, Poland, Georgia, Germany, Madagascar, Canada, Sweden, Slovenia, Turkey, Colombia, South Africa, Taiwan, and the United States.

First Look is about discovery, about illuminating the artistic process, inviting audiences to participate in an ongoing dialogue about new cinematic possibilities. This year, in addition to appearing in person at screenings, filmmakers will participate in a range of master classes, workshops, and performances throughout the Museum.

Organized by Eric Hynes, Curator of Film; Edo Choi, Assistant Curator of Film; David Schwartz, Manager of Theatrical Programming, Netflix; Becca Keating, Director of Development and curator of Persistent Visions program; and Sonia Epstein, Associate Curator of Science & Film.

Tickets & Passes:

Unless otherwise noted, tickets for individual screening programs are $15 ($11 seniors and students / $9 youth / free for MoMI members starting at the Senior & Student levels ($7 Classic members). Tickets for Opening Night are $20 ($15 for MoMI Members):

$100 First Look All-Access Pass (good for all programs, including Opening Night and Working on It sessions)

$75 First Look Student pass (good for all programs, and Working on It sessions, excludes Opening Night)

$50 First Look Screening Pass (does not include Opening Night screening)

$50 First Look “Working on It” All-Sessions Pass

$20 ($16 student) First Look “Working on It” Day passes (days 1–3 only)


The BFA Film Department, School of Visual Arts, The Jonathan B. Murray Center for Documentary Journalism at the Missouri School of Journalism, The Harriman Institute at Columbia University, The Polish Cultural Institute New York, Cultural Services of the French Embassy, Taipei Cultural Center of New York, Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program, Captain Lawrence Brewery, Bridge Lane Wine, The Collective Paper Factory Hotel