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The Festival of Slovenian Film traditionally features a series of events targeted at film professionals, which are bound to appeal to a wider audience. In the 22nd festival edition, the industry programme will span five days from Wednesday, 18 September, to Sunday, 22 September 2019. All events will be held in the Green Hall of Avditorij Portorož.

If the film programme showcases the Slovenian cinema, the industry programme is increasingly looking across the national borders: after focusing on Austrian and Serbian cinema in the previous two editions, this edition is highlighting Italy as the country ‘In Focus’ for the main event in the industry programme, the Coproduction Meeting (CPRM). The event will feature a rundown of Italian institutions making up the funding network for film production and cultural exchange (MIBAC, ANICA, regional funds, the Italian Cultural Institute in Ljubljana, the Italian Trade Agency in Slovenia) and pitching sessions for selected projects in development and postproduction to facilitate co-productions between the two countries. 

The tradition of working with Italy in film co-productions goes back to the late 1950s and 1960s, but was long limited mostly to technical input and supporting roles by Slovenian actors. In the last ten years, there has finally been a shift towards cross-cultural co-productions. Nine majority and nine minority co-productions with Italy, including Feed Me with Your Words, Stories from Chestnut Woods, A Comedy of Tears, Zoran, My Nephew the Idiot, indicate an organic cross-cultural exchange that is rooted in the cultural environment. This year’s festival line-up is clear evidence that after collapsing on the border, the increasingly draughty iron curtain has finally fallen in the minds of people. The Competition Programme features films that attest to the wealth of thematic, historical and cultural connections: the previously mentioned Stories from Chestnut Woods, as well as Identity Dilemma, Daughter of Camorra, Rosa and the short film Stoj! To these, we have added Menocchio the Heretic by Alberto Fasulo who is joining us as a guest of honour to speak about his minimalist drama set in the time of counter-reformation, when a simple miller is persecuted by the Inquisition for his unorthodox religious views. The film premiered at the 2018 Locarno festival. The screening in Portorož will be followed by a Q&A with the director about his universal tale of timeless commitment to human values.

But to set the industry programme in motion, FSF will start by building bridges between cinema and literature on Wednesday, 18 September, with Shoot a Book! Connecting literature and film, a set of two events aimed at linking the film and book industries for a more creative exchange. Devised by the Slovenian Film Centre and the Slovenian Book Agency, the set includes a round table on book adaptations with guests from the book and film industries, chaired by the renowned film critic Marcel Štefančič Jr. After a short break, this will be followed by a pitching event in which editors and publishers will have 10 minutes to pitch, for an audience of film producers, notable literary works that lend themselves perfectly to adaptation for the screen. Inspired by Cannes’ Shoot the Book! and Berlin’s Books at Berlinale, our aim is to encourage adaptations of books by Slovenian authors for the screen. As Slovenia was selected to be the 2022 guest of honour at the prestigious Frankfurt Book Fair, who is also a partner to the two programmes in Cannes and Berlin, there will be ample opportunity for Slovenian authors to showcase their books with filmic potential. This is a chance for Slovenia to establish a platform that can create a market for adaptations of Slovenian literary works and motivate Slovenian and international filmmakers.

Both events on Wednesday will be in English.

On Thursday, 19 September, the main industry event of the 22nd FSF, the Coproduction Meeting (CPRM) – In Focus: Italy, will start with a brief introduction to the festival and the main Italian and Slovenian film financing institutions. The Festival of Slovenian Film will be presented as the event that provides an overview and critical evaluation of the latest Slovenian cinema, and awards the most prominent achievements and artists with national film awards. The Slovenian Film Centre will be presented as a public agency that encourages creativity in the film and audiovisual fields by creating suitable conditions, and the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities as the main audiovisual public funding institution in Italy.

This introduction will be followed by pitches by Italian and Slovenian projects in development. Selected Slovenian and Italian projects in development and pre-production, seeking potential partners in one of the countries, will have a chance for a public presentation. In cooperation with the Motovila Institute (Creative Europe Desk Slovenia), an organisation promoting international and cross-sector cooperation in the cultural and creative sectors, projects will also be given an opportunity to better prepare their presentation strategies with the help of the experienced international AV consultant and scriptwriter, Alejandro de la Fuente.

On Thursday afternoon, the programme will continue with REACT Masterclass about the possibility of saying “maybe”. In times of unprecedented environmental crises and constant abuses of the most essential rights, of limitless precariousness and extremism, creation seems to be assuming the role of forceful denunciation and decisive action. But how can this responsibility be taken without renouncing the reflexive and poetic approach to reality? How can this ethical commitment be elaborated without neglecting the fertile and lucid space extended between doubt and contradiction? Marta Andreu, a documentary producer and workshop specialist, will be there to provide answers.

Wrapping up the busy Thursday schedule is an XR Workshop hosted by Marko Cafnik. Cafnik will discuss the virtual world brought about by VR glasses and other so-called immersive technologies which serve to expand the experience of cinema, adding new dimensions to the actualities of life. The expanded reality (XR) workshop will provide an insight into the technology as well as other dimensions and potentials of the virtual, augmented and mixed reality.

The working language of all events on Thursday except the XR Workshop is English.

On Friday, 20 September, the day will start with the Work in Progress Market, an event showcasing Slovenian and Italian projects in postproduction for sales agents and distributors with the screenings of selected scenes, mood images and short excerpts. 

Later that day, the Actors Guild of Slovenia (DSI) is organising a round-table discussion in collaboration with AIPA. Entitled Actor and their right, the event aims to start a public debate about the issue of copyright protection for actors in Slovenia. Compared to other countries, Slovenian actors are distinctly discriminated in terms of copyright and related rights. Under the applicable law from 1995, actors have the right to remuneration for private copying only. But is an actor today really just a “performer” as stated in the 25-year-old law? Joining the debate to critically address the issue are the President of DSI, Sebastian Cavazza, and members Katarina Čas, Branko Završan, Jurij Drevenšek, Ludvik Bagari, and Maja Sever, and a guest from the Belgian organization PlayRight, Ioan Kaes. Chaired by actor Matej Zemljič.

Friday afternoon will be dedicated to guests from Italy. Meet the Italians will bring an overview of the available funding opportunities for film in Italy, from national funds like MIBAC (Ministry of Culture) to regional funds like FVG (Friuli Venezia Giulia), Trentino or Apulia Film Commission, and examples of successful co-productions between Slovenia and Italy, as well as presentations of the Italian national film association, the Torino Film Lab training programme, the Ljubljana-based Italian Cultural Institute, and the Italian Trade Agency in Slovenia. The event will also inaugurate the new Audiovisual Co-production Agreement between the Government of the Italian Republic and the Government of the Republic of Slovenia.

Later that afternoon, this year’s Coproduction Meeting with partners from Italy will wrap up with one-to-one meetings between representatives of the presented projects and their potential co-production partners.

All events on Friday will be in English, except the Actors Guild of Slovenia round-table discussion, which will be in English and Slovene.

On Saturday, 21 September, visitors can attend the Emerging Producers lecture by Marcin Łuczaj. In its meeting in November 2016, the Producers Guild of Slovenia (DSP) established a division called ‘Emerging producers’. Its main purpose is to bring together up-and-coming Slovenian audiovisual producers, as well as provide a platform for an exchange of knowledge and experience in film and audiovisual production and for professional training and growth of its members.

The second event on Saturday morning is a round table to mark three years of the Scenarnica screenwriting workshop. Scenarnica is an intensive screenwriting workshop focusing on what could possibly be the most difficult stage of the creative process – turning an idea into the first version of the screenplay. Organised by the Directors Guild of Slovenia (DSR) and the Slovenian Film Centre (SFC), the fourth edition of Scenarnica started in Ljubljana and will continue in Portorož. Its artistic head Matevž Luzar will start by shortly outlining the method of the workshop and the opportunities provided by participation in the workshop. This will be followed by project pitches by some of the participants from previous editions.

After lunch, the day will continue with a round-table discussion by the Association of Postproduction Artists (DPPU) with a lecture by Miloš Kalusek. Entitled The power of film editing, the event will bring together Miloš Kalusek, Robert Černelč and Janez Dovč, who will share their thoughts on how elements of film editing, art and music come together in making a film. Chaired by Olga Toni.

The last event on Saturday is a lecture by Gregor Skender, a senior consultant at Deloitte, on Fiscal and Economic Impacts of Audiovisual Industry in Slovenia. In collaboration with the Producers Guild of Slovenia and AIPA, with financial input from AIPA and professional input from SFC, Deloitte has conducted an analysis of the economic and fiscal impacts of the audiovisual industry on the Slovenian economy, and the effect state grants have on the development of the industry. Results show that the importance of the audiovisual industry for economy is growing both at global and national levels, while indicating the need for further dialogue between the industry and competent public institutions. The presentation will be followed by a discussion.

The Emerging Producers lecture will be in English. The working language of all other Saturday events will be Slovene.

On Sunday, 22 September, the industry programme of the 22nd Festival of Slovenian Film will come to a close with a meeting of representatives of the main public film institutions in the region: HAVC, Montenegro FC, FC Serbia, and Kosovo Cinematography Center. The event will be in English.

Later that day, the Directors Guild of Slovenia (DSR) will hold its 5th annual Kosobrin Awards Ceremony to award below-the-line workers in filmmaking. This way, the Guild aims to honour less visible trades without whom directors cannot imagine either a good working process or a good end result. Previous award winners include grip Janez Petretič, colourist Emil Svetlik, documentation specialist/researcher Jožica Hafner, and script supervisor Petra Trampuž. 

The festival will also play host to aspiring film critics as part of ‘Sharpening the gaze with Slovenian cinema’, a film critics workshop for high school and college students as well as others with a keen interest in cinema.  In a relaxed creative atmosphere, a group of participants will meet for daily sessions to watch films, reflect on them, share their views, analyse the use and purpose of expressive means, and write short reviews under the guidance of the mentors: Dr Maja Kranjc, Editor-in-Chief of KINO! magazine, and film critic and writer Robert Kuret. The final products will be posted on ostrenjepogleda.wordpress.com, and a best-of will be published in the KINO! Magazine. The participants of the workshop run by the KINO! Society for Expanding Film Culture will also present their award for best student film of the festival.

The industry events are coordinated by Luka Venturin: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Festival of Slovenian Film traditionally features the presentation of the Metod Badjura Lifetime Achievement Award. This year’s winner is the independent filmmaker and sound composer Andrej Zdravič.

The jurors for the 2019 Metod Badjura Award, who gave an extensive commentary honouring the life and work of the laureate, were Karpo Godina, Dušan Moravec, Aleš Pavlin, Olga Toni, and Varja Močnik as the chair of the jury. The award will be presented at the opening ceremony of the 22nd Festival of Slovenian Film in the Main Hall of Avditorij Portorož on Tuesday, 17 September.

During the festival, the Tribute strand will screen a selection of Andrej Zdravič's works.

 Harald Fuhr/EFP

EFP (European Film Promotion) is delighted to announce that the cooperation with the Berlin International Film Festival for EUROPEAN SHOOTING STARS has been confirmed by Artistic Director Carlo Chatrian and Executive Director Mariette Rissenbeek.

"It's a pleasure for us to continue providing a prominent platform for these outstanding talents and to support them in getting the international attention their work deserves. Eight out of ten European Shooting Stars are invited to international castings following the event at the Berlinale and so many have seized the opportunity successfully. We are looking forward to welcoming European Shooting Stars with their new films in the years ahead," says Mariette Rissenbeek.

For more than 20 years EUROPEAN SHOOTING STARS, one of EFP's flagship programmes supported by the Creative Europe - MEDIA Programme of the European Union, highlights the most talented up-and-coming actors throughout Europe during the Berlin International Film Festival with the aim to jumpstart their international career. For many former participants it proved to be an essential stepping stone. Among the most prominent ones in recent years are Carey Mulligan (Mudbound), Alba Rohrwacher (Happy as Lazarro), Alicia Vikander (Tomb Raider), George MacKay (Captain Fantastic), and Marwan Kenzari (Instinct).

Each year the Europe's national film promotion institutes nominate their most promising emerging actresses and actors to take part in the prestigious programme. A jury of industry professionals selects the ten most interesting and internationally versatile talents to be introduced to the press, film industry and public at the Berlin International Film Festival. As a EUROPEAN SHOOTING STAR, the participants attend a tailor-made programme, including meetings with casting directors, talent agents and producers, which broadens and strengthens their international industry alliances and networks. The activities culminate in a glamorous presentation of the EUROPEAN SHOOTING STARS Awards at the Berlinale Palast.

To qualify for EUROPEAN SHOOTING STAR 2020, the talent - between 16 and 32 years of age - has to have a successful professional career in his or her native country (including first awards), a leading role in at least one feature-length film released after October 2017, the potential to work internationally, and must be fluent in English.

The 22nd Festival of Slovenian Film opened last night in Portorož, where it will close with the awards ceremony on Sunday, 22 September. During the ceremony, the Badjura Award was presented to the 2019 laureate Andrej Zdravič, whose short film Sand’s Journey was screened before the opening film of the festival, Metod Pevec’ new feature I Am Frank featuring Janez Škof, Valter Dragan and Katarina Čas. The host of the opening, which also featured an appearance by the popular local singer-songwriter Rudi Bučar, was Jure Longyka. The ceremony was followed by a reception in the Avditorij foyer. 

In her opening address, the Director of the Slovenian Film Centre, Nataša Bučar, drew attention to the important progress achieved after years of efforts for adequate funding of the Slovenian cinema: “In November 2018, members of the Slovenian Parliament’s Committee on Culture unanimously voted in favour of the decision to raise the funding for Slovenian cinema to 11 million euros by 2022.” As a result, in 2019 the Slovenian Film Centre “can work with a budget that is bigger than any time in the last decade, although still at just over half of the envisaged 11 million.” At the same time, the creative potential of filmmakers thrives: “The latest call for feature films yielded a very high number of projects of very high quality; however, due to the lack of funds as many as 11 feature films had to be placed on a reserve list and only six projects could receive support. This proves that the creative potential of Slovenian cinema is growing. I expect that so will the budget for cinema, as it was agreed,” added Nataša Bučar in the hope of a brighter future for Slovenian cinema.

As previously announced, the main Slovenian film event will provide, over a little less than a week, a curated overview of the latest Slovenian cinema, which includes fiction, documentary and animated films of all lengths. A total of 157 films were submitted to the festival for consideration by the Programming Board, with 106 films making it into the official selection. Of this, the Official Competition includes 57 films: 11 feature-length films, 10 minority co-productions (8 feature-length and 2 short), 5 medium-length films, 19 short films, and 13 student films.

The screenings take place in two venues, Avditorij and Monfort Cinema, the latter also being the venue for daily post-screening socialising with a varied DJ and live music line-up. For films in the Official Competition, Q&As with filmmakers take place the day after their screening and are broadcast by the AKTV film academy TV live on its website or available from its archive with a one-day delay.

The main new feature of this year’s festival is a live broadcast of the awards ceremony on TV Slovenia on Sunday, 22 September. After the festival, between Tuesday, 24 September, and Saturday, 28 September, the award-winning films will also be screened in the Komuna Cinema, Ljubljana. The line-up will be announced on the festival website after the awards ceremony.

The industry programme is focused on facilitating and promoting co-productions with Italy. The diverse range of events also encompasses round table discussions, workshops, and lectures, including a round table on book adaptations chaired by the film critic Marcel Štefančič Jr., and an event in which editors and publishers will pitch Slovenian literary works to an audience of film producers.

In the scope of an enduring and fruitful partnership with San Sebastian International Film Festival, Europa Distribution will host a workshop on the presence and prominence of European films on VoD in the Basque town.  Europa Distribution will gather experts and professionals to discuss over a public talk and then during a private workshop the extremely sensitive topic of the availability and visibility of European films on online platforms.  Video on Demand has become a prominent element of the film sector but it is not easy for independent distributors to have their independent and European films defended at best on VoD platforms.  While DVDs were important in the life of a film, it is unfortunately not yet the case with VoD releases.  This is of course a concern and a key topic for independent distributors as their long-term revenues may face a significant decrease.

At an institutional level, the Audiovisual Media Service directive (AVMS) and more specifically the quotas and the prominence tools to be implemented at European level will hopefully help independent European  films to gain more visibility.  To discuss this topic, a public panel will take place on Monday 23rd between 10:00 and 11:30 am. Anna Herold (European Commission - Chief of Unit AVMS, BE), Martin Kanzler (European Audiovisual Observatory - Film Analyst, FR), Julie-Jeanne Régnault (EFADs - Secretary General, BE), Vit Schmarc (Artcam - European independent distributor, CZ) and Silvia Cibien (EUROVOD, Secretary General, FR) will share their views and experiences with the audience.

This public panel will be moderated by Michael Gubbins, British, founder of SampoMedia, journalist and former chair of fFilm Cymru Wales.

The public panel will be followed by a closed workshop on Tuesday 24th where Europa Distribution members will have the opportunity to have an in-depth discussion with the invited speakers to the open panel. On Wednesday 25thAistė Račaitytė (Kino Pavasaris, LT), Monica Felea (Bad Unicorn, RO), Ulysse Kelbert (Curzon, UK), Jakub Mró(Tongariro Releasing, PL), Kahloon Loke (Peccadillo Pictures, UK), and Carola Stern (Filmcoopi, CH) will share their experience and stories during a session dedicated to the strategies behind the releases of recent European titles.

Europa Distribution will continue discussing with its members and other professionals and experts about the specific challenges of releasing and promoting independent films in Europe with its next events in Rome and Amsterdam. Articles on all our events will be published on Europa Distribution’s socials and blog: http://www.europa-distribution.org/blog/
Stay tuned! 

East-West co-production market connecting cottbus, taking place during FilmFestival Cottbus in November, presents its selection of 13 projects in development and 6 works in progress for its upcoming edition. 

From 6-8 November 2019, the 21st edition of connecting cottbus (coco) presents fresh feature film projects to a select audience of co-producers, sales agents and other potential partners. In total, 13 cocoPITCH and 6 cocoWIP projects from 14 countries in broader Eastern Europe will be pitched. In alignment with the FilmFestival Cottbus section Spotlight: Montenegro, coco is pleased to present its first Montenegrin project. All projects compete for a variety of awards. Their producers and directors also take part in in-depth feedback sessions with industry experts in the cocoLAB, while all industry participants can join networking events and a framework programme focusing on current production trends. 

This year saw the completion of a number of coco alumni projects: CAT IN THE WALL (Bulgaria/UK/ France) by Mina Mileva and Vesela Kazakova, winner of the coco Best Pitch Award 2017, had its world premiere in competition at the Locarno Film Festival, Ines Tanović’s THE SON (Bosnia and Herzegovina/Croatia/Romania/Slovenia/Montenegro) opened this year’s Sarajevo Film Festival. Alumni projects of the cocoWIP section include Antonio Lukich’s MY THOUGHTS ARE SILENT (Ukraine), winner of the Special Jury Prize in Karlovy Vary's East of the West competition as well as the Audience Award and Fipresci Prize for Best Ukrainian Film at Odessa International Film Festival, and ZANA (Kosovo/Albania) by Antoneta Kastrati, which just premiered in the Discovery section of the Toronto International Film Festival. 

The cocoPITCH selection for this year comprises a large range of filmic styles and genres, from political thriller and road movie to dramas about war trauma or modern slavery, next to apocalyptic sci-fi and a romantic comedy set in outer space. The majority of the projects again have a strong female protagonist. Stories about immigration and exile are set alongside personal quests for moral integrity and struggles for autonomy or a sense of one’s own history. Seven exciting debut feature projects join new work by award-winning filmmakers like Ruxandra Zenide, Ivan Marinović and Sergey Dvortsevoy, who received the Special Pitch Award FilmFestival Cottbus 2018 to present his new project THREE, SEVEN, ACE. Pre-selected by coco at partnering events were Ion Borș’ CARBON, winner of the Transilvania Pitch Stop - coco Award at TIFF 2019, and RATTLESNAKES by Nikola Ljuca, which took the Midpoint - coco Award (Midpoint Feature Launch) at Karlovy Vary 2019. 

The 2019 line-up of cocoWIP also has a variety in tone, including a slacker dramedy and a darkly comic revenge story, as well as psychological family dramas set against the backdrop of pressing socio-political realities. Impressive feature debuts dominate the roster in 2019, among them those by acclaimed Romanian theatre director Eugen Jebeleanu and Serbian director Milica Tomović, whose short film work screened in Toronto, Locarno and Sarajevo. 

This year’s edition of connecting cottbus takes place on 6-8 November 2019

Producers, sales agents, commissioning editors and other industry representatives active in East- West European co-production can apply to attend without a project by 7 October 2019. 

Selected cocoPITCH Projects 2019 

ABOUT A GIRL | Switzerland / Romania | dir: Ruxandra Zenide | prod: Alexander Iordachescu | Elefant Films 

ATHLETE | Turkey | dir: Semih Gülen & Mustafa Emin Büyükcoşkun | prod: Arda Çiltepe | Vigo Film 

Transilvania Pitch Stop - coco Award CARBON | Moldova | dir: Ion Borș | prod: Ion Borș, Sergiu Cumatrenco Jr. | Kantora Film Production, YOUBESC 

CONVENIENCE STORE | Russia | dir: Mikhail Borodin | prod: Artem Vassiliev | Metrafilms 

FOREVER HOLD YOUR PEACE | Montenegro, Serbia | dir: Ivan Marinović | prod: Marija Stojanović, Ivan Marinović | Adriatic Western, SENSE Production 

NO LAND FOR ME | Israel | dir: Ram Nehari | prod: Yifat Prestelnik | Yifat Prestelnik Films 

Midpoint - coco Award (Midpoint Feature Launch) RATTLESNAKES | Serbia | dir: Nikola Ljuca | prod: Nikolina Vučetić-Zečević, Maja Ilić | Biberche 

SPAS | Ukraine | dir: Maksym Nakonechnyi | prod: Yelizaveta Smith, Darya Bassel | Tabor Production 

Special Pitch Award FilmFestival Cottbus THREE, SEVEN, ACE | Russia | dir: Sergey Dvortsevoy | prod: Sergey Dvortsevoy | Kinodvor 

TRACES | Croatia | dir: Dubravka Turić | prod: Ira Cecić | Kinorama 

VESPER SEEDS | Lithuania | dir: Kristina Buožytė & Bruno Samper | prod: Asta Liukaityte, Daiva Jovaišiene, Kristina Buožytė | Natrix Natrix 

WET MONDAY | Poland | dir: Justyna Mytnik | prod: Marta Gmosińska | Lava Films 

YOU ARE THE UNIVERSE | Ukraine | dir: Pavlo Ostrikov | prod: Vladimir Yatsenko, Anna Sobolevska | LimeLite 

Selected cocoWIP Projects 2019 

BETWEEN TWO DAWNS | Turkey / Romania | dir: Selman Nacar | prod: Burak Çevik, Diloy Gülün, Oana Giurgiu | Kuyu Film, Karma Film, Hai Hui Entertainment 

BLINDFOLD | Ukraine | dir: Taras Dron | prod: Valeria Sochyvets | Contemporary Ukrainian Cinema 

CELTS | Serbia | dir: Milica Tomović | prod: Vladimir Vasiljevic | EED Productions 

MIA MISSES HER REVENGE | Romania | dir: Bogdan Theodor Olteanu | prod: Anamaria Antoci, Anda Ionescu | Tangaj Production 

POPPY FIELD | Romania | dir: Eugen Jebeleanu | prod: Velvet Moraru | Icon Production 

THE THRILLSEEKERS | Belarus | dir: Vlada Senkova | prod: Larisa Oleinik, Viktar Labkovich | DOKA, Pervaja Kinovideo Company 

connecting cottbus is supported by Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, Creative Europe/MEDIA and MDM Mitteldeutsche Medienförderung, Ministerium der Justiz und für Europa und Verbraucherschutz Brandenburg (MdJEV) 

Thanks to our partners: Avanpost, D-Facto Motion, Producers Network, eave, Fantastic Zagreb Film Festival, Filmarket Hub, Midpoint, Stadt Cottbus and Transilvania Pitch Stop 

More information: http://www.connecting-cottbus.de | https://www.facebook.com/connecting.cottbushttps://www.instagram.com/connectingcottbus/

(19 September) Lefteris Eleftheriou, Head of the Filming Unit at Invest Cyprus and Chairman of the Cyprus Film Commission, will be visiting several filming studios in London next week. The visit follows the launch of Cyprus’s first film scheme, Film in Cyprus, last year. Mr Eleftheriou will meet with potential investors to discuss new opportunities and promote the growing sector on the island.

The scheme is a collaboration between the government and Invest Cyprus, the country’s investment promotion agency.

Cyprus has already attracted international interest with several feature films shot entirely on location in the country. Two of those films include Jiu Jitsu, starring Nicolas Cage, and S.O.S Survive or Sacrifice with William Baldwin.

An increased interest in TV show productions has been evident as well, with the filming of Love Island (Hungary) starting 1 October in Paphos, Cyprus. A popular Swedish TV show, Superstars, will also begin filming on the island over the coming months.

The Filming Scheme offers tax relaxations and credit, with the most attractive incentive being a maximum 35% reimbursement for nearly all expenses made in Cyprus, according to the size of the investment. It covers hiring local filming crews to rent portable toilets and recruiting animal actors.


In recognition of a rich and diverse career in front of the camera, French actress Juliette Binoche will receive the honorary award EUROPEAN ACHIEVEMENT IN WORLD CINEMA.

Born in Paris, Juliette Binoche started performing in theatre already as a child. RENDEZ-VOUS by André Téchiné was the first real entrance to what would become an impressive career in film (after Jean-Luc Godard’s HAIL MARY), playing a young actress coming to Paris to realise her dream. After playing in THE NIGHT IS YOUNG by Léos Carax, she started her international film career with THE UNBEARABLE LIGHTNESS OF BEING (1988) by Philip Kaufman. Working with Léos Carax again, THE LOVERS ON THE BRIDE won her a first EFA in 1992. THREE COLOURS: BLUE (1993) by Krzysztof Kieslowski won her a Volpi Cup at the Venice Film Festival and a French César.

She received her second EFA, a Silver Bear in Berlin, a Bafta and an Oscar for her performance in THE ENGLISH PATIENT (1996) by Anthony Minghella. In the year 2000, she appeared in Lasse Hallström‘s CHOCOLAT for which she won an EFA People’s Choice Award and nominations for both a BAFTA and an Oscar. In 2010, she won the Best Actress Award in Cannes for her role in CERTIFIED COPY by Abbas Kiarostami.

Throughout her impressive career, the five-time EFA Nominee and 3-time EFA Winner has appeared in more than 60 feature films, both in English and French, mainstream and arthouse and she has worked with directors like Chantal Akerman, Olivier Assayas, John Boorman, Rupert Sanders, Isabel Coixet, David Cronenberg, Claire Denis, Bruno Dumont, Abel Ferrara, Amos Gitaï, Michael Haneke, Hou Hsiao-Hsien, Naomi Kawase, Hirokazu Kore-eda, Louis Malle, Jean-Paul Rappenau,  and Małgorzata Szumowska.

It is a great pleasure for the European Film Academy to present the award European Achievement in World Cinema to Juliette Binoche for her impressive dedication to cinema.

Juliette Binoche will be an honorary guest at the 32nd European Film Awards Ceremony on 7 December in Berlin.

BIAFF Film festival closing ceremony took place on 22 September, at Batumi State Musical Center.  International Jury awarded prizes in three-competition section – International Feature Films, Doc Films and Short Films section.  

BIAFF industry platform “Alternative Wave” awarded prizes for three projects:

  • Wroclaw Audio-Visual Center (CeTA) – 10,000 EUR equivalent production services was awarded to film project “Orange Sky” (Georgia), Director, producer: Shalva Shengeli; Writers: Shalva Shengeli, Alexander Kurkhuli
  • Istanbul Film Festival’s industry platform “Meeting on the Bridge” – participation in “Meeting on the Bridge” 2020 for film project – “You Look Like Your Father” (Georgia), Director: Levan Lomjaria, Producer: Vako Kirkitadze 
  • BIAFF prize – participation at BERLINALE film festival industry platform for film project – “The Load” (Georgia), Director, producer: Ana Iosava; Writers: Ana Iosava, Otar Katamadze

BIAFF 2019 international competition section’s Jury consisting of five members – Alexander Mindadze (Russia – Head of Jury), Tatiana Detlofson (USA), Martin Blaney (UK), Carmen Grey (UK), Rusudan Glurjidze (Georgia) awarded following prizes:

  • Grand Prix – “Let There Be Light”, Marko Skop, Slovak Republic/Czech Republic, 2019
  • Best Film Director – Reza Mirkarimi, “Castle of Dreams”, Iran, 2019
  • Best Actress – Ece Yuksel,  in film “Tale of Three Sisters”, Emin Alper, Turkey/Germany, 2019
  • Best Actor – Kayhan Açikgöz in film “Tale of Three Sisters”, Emin Alper, Turkey/Germany, 2019
  • Jury Special Prize – “End of Seasons”, Elmar Imanov, Germany/Azerbaijan/Georgia, 2019

BIAFF 2019 Documentary Films international competition section’s Jury consisting of five members -  Krzystof Gierat (Poland – Head of Jury), Ghasideh Golmakani (Iran), Karen Avetysian (Armenia), Oles Yanchuk (Ukraine), Vakhtang Kuntsev-Gabashvili (Georgia) , awarded the following films:

  • The Best Doc film - “Shooting the Mafia”, Kim Longinoto, Ireland, 2019
  • Special Mentions - “Forman VS Forman”, Helena Trestikova/Jacub Hejna, Czech Republic/France, 2019  and Lovemobile, Elke Margarete Lehrenkrauss, Germany, 2019

BIAFF 2019 Short Film international competition section’s Jury consisting of - Otar Shamatava (Georgia - Head of Jury), Paul Thiltges (Luxemburg) and David Lorenz (Germany) awarded the following prizes:

  • The Best Short film – “Animal”, Amiran Dolidze, Georgia, 2019
  • Jury Special Mentions - “Watermelon Juice”, Irene Moray, Spain, 2019   and “Hope”, Aleksandra Markova, Belarus, 2019

BIAFF 2019 Georgia Film Critics Jury consisting of - Lela Ochiauri (Chairwoman), Salome Kikaleishvili, Nino Mkheidze - revealed the choice for best film by film critics:

  • Best film -  “Castle of Dreams”, Reza Mirkarimi, Iran, 2019

BIAFF 2019 Life time Achievement awards for contribution to cinema was granted to:

  • Paul Schrader (USA)
  • Denis Lavant (France)
  • Alexander Mindadze (Russia)
  • Manuchar Shervashidze  (Georgia)

Festival Supporters– Ministry of Culture of Georgia,  Georgian National Film Center, Ministry of Cultura of Ajara AR, Tourism Department of Ajara AR, National Tourism Agency of Georgia, Batumi Drama Theatre, British Council, Goethe Institute Georgia, Embassy of Italy 

Festival Sponsors – Hotel Wyndham Batumi, Cinema APOLLO, Hotel “Downtown Hotel”, Hotel “Mardi Plaza”, Hotel “Boulevard”, HQ propaganda, Tour Company “Wonderland”, Cafe “Gardens”, Batumi Auto transport, “Legal Consulting Center” LLC, CETA studio (Poland) 

Festival Media Partners – Georgian Public Broadcaster, Radio Fortuna/Fortuna+, Adjara TV, Batumi TV, Publicity Group (www.publicity.ge), Film New Europe (www.filmneweurope.com), INDIGO Magazine, Cinemania, Cineuropa.org, AT.GE, Newspaper BATUMELEBI, netgazeti.ge

Our contact info – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , Tel: 599-482181

Film New Europe has teamed up with the Warsaw Kids Film Forum (25-27 September 2019) for Inspiration Day, sponsored by the Central European Intitiative (CEI) on 25 September 2019.