Melbourne International Film Festival is back, with today (Thursday) marking its return after a two-year hiatus.

The 70th edition of the Melbourne International Film Festival will feature 18 days of special anniversary events, live gigs, immersive experiences, curated talks and in-person cinema screenings. There will also be a Dolly Parton-themed party.

The line-up includes accomplished artists, legendary auteurs and fresh film voices. Academy Award-nominee Brett Morgen will speak about his new David Bowie documentary “Moonage Daydream”, Mexican director Carlos Reygadas and recent Cannes breakout Charlotte Wells will also appear.

Australian film by Goran Stolevski, “Of an Age”, will make its world premiere at the festival’s Opening Night Gala. Stolevski – recently named as one of Variety’s 10 Directors to Watch for 2022 – will return to his hometown of Melbourne for the event.

Al Cossar, artistic director of MIFF, spruiked the wide scope and scale of this year’s event.

“We are so thrilled, and so grateful, to return MIFF to Melbourne, in our 70th year – in what will be a true adventure across cinema, and a chance for artists and audiences to reconnect and celebrate after years of separation,” Cossar said.

“In 2022, with programming happening across the CBD, suburbs, regional Victoria, as well as MIFF Play presenting festival highlights all across Australia, and our MIFF XR platform taking on the world, MIFF presents an evolution for the festival as much as a return – an extraordinary array of film and filmmakers poised and ready to bring the world on screen to our city, and far beyond.”

Steve Dimopoulos, minister for creative industries, said: “MIFF is a beloved festival that has woven itself into the cultural fabric of Victoria over the past 70 years, captivating audiences across generations whilst showcasing the state’s dynamic film industry.

“This year is set to deliver another bumper program for Victorians, while the new $140,000 Bright Horizons Best Film Award will reinforce the festival’s leading role among top film events and showcase local talent on a global stage.

“We’re investing in the future of Victoria’s screen industry to deliver growth, jobs and opportunities to our creative industries workforce.”

The Melbourne International Film Festival runs from Aug. 4 until Aug. 28. To purchase tickets and explore the full program, click here.