(See Who's Partying At.. for awards photos)
Romanian scriptwriter Ioan Antoci was awarded the prestigious ScripTeast Krzysztof Kieslowski Prize for his script The Japanese Day at a glamourous champagne beach party during the Cannes Film Festival.
Romanian cinema's New Wave may have surfaced much earlier but ever since Cristian Mungiu's 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days won the Palm d'Or in Cannes two years ago it has been on the map for most people.
The winners of the main competition were announced Sunday evening as one of the most controversial Cannes line-ups in many years drew to a close. With top European auteurs on view and an overdose of violence and sadism that made even Quentin Tarantino look tame compared to the fare offered up by Lars Von Trier and Michal Haneke it was not a year for the faint hearted.
Bulgaria's Nu Boyana Film Studios (http://nuboyana.com/) continues to be one of the busiest studio facilities in Europe attracting a steady stream of 10 to 12 international productions a year that keeps its six sound stages buzzing with Hollywood names and productions like Peter Weir's The Way Back and Nu Image's Ninja.
International producers see the Sofia studio facility where the services of experienced professionals are still up to 30% less than in other neighbouring countries as good value for money-especially these days when every Euro counts.
"In the midst of the global financial crisis at the end of 2008 we were worried that there would be a decline in the number of productions that wanted to come to Bulgaria," said Nu Boyana's head of production Iliya Sotirov, "But we were very surprised to find that the beginning of 2009 was a lot stronger for us than we expected. Producers are looking for places that can give them good value for their money and we can give them exactly this."
"We believe that the quality that you get in Bulgaria can compete with any other country in the region. Bulgaria is about 10% cheaper than Romania and up to 30% cheaper than other Central and Eastern European countries."
Sotirov is in Cannes together with Nu Boyana CEO David Varod to close deals before racing back to Sofia where they will be opening two new stages of 1500 sq m each. A further stage of 1500 sq m with a water tank is planned to be ready by early next year. The studio already boasts a world class CGI and special effects facility.
Contact Iliya Sotirov or David Varod Tel + 359 878 337 083 in Cannes until 19 May
Jelka Stergel, the director of the Slovenian Film Fund (SFF) (http://www.film-sklad.si/), was dismissed on Thursday, April 2, and replaced by board member Denis Miklavcic.
The Bulgarian Ministry of Culture has denied allegations by the head of the National Film Council of Bulgaria that it intends to cut film funding in 2009 by nearly 59%.
The recent renaissance of Bulgarian film will grind to a halt if the government goes ahead with the planned cuts to subsidies of 59% in 2009.
The 13th edition of the Sofia International Film Festival, 5-15 March, attracted local crowds as well as European industry professionals of both feature and documentary films from all over Europe with an emphasis on the Balkans.
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