Cottbus, 19. September 2013 – This year will see the 15. edition of the East-West co-production market connecting cottbus, as usual held in parallel to the 23. FilmFestival Cottbus. On November 7 and 8, 140 participants will have the opportunity to present ideas for new feature films, initiate co-productions between Eastern and Western Europe and discuss current topics for the European film industry.

Since 1999, a total of 173 projects were pitched at connecting cottbus, about 60 of which have since been completed. This year alone, four films that were pitched in Cottbus have so far been presented in the competitions of international festivals: The Serbian-Croatian THE PRIEST’S CHILDREN and the Serbian-Swiss WITHERING could be seen at Karlovy Vary, while the Romanian ROXANNE was screened in Locarno and the Romanian-German WOLF in Sarajevo. Earlier well-known coco projects include Sergej Loznitsa’s MY JOY (Cannes 2010) and Srdan Golubovic’s THE TRAP (Berlinale 2007). Both films will be shown at the FilmFestival Cottbus as part of the anniversary series „15 Years of connecting cottbus“. Following the screenings, producers and supporters will provide insights into the production history of these films, i.e., all the work that goes into an international coproduction before it hits the screen. The third film in this series is the recently completed TANGERINES, an unusual tale of love and hate in the Caucasus on the background of a little-known chapter of Estonian-Georgian relations.

During the pitching on November 7, 13 projects from 11 countries will be presented to potential European co-production partners. One of them, the new project by last year’s winner of the FilmFestival Cottbus Grand Prize, Polish director Maria Sadowska, was already a given by winning the “Special Pitch Award“. With Oleg Sentsov‘s KAI, connecting cottbus will present the new project by one of the shooting stars of Ukrainian cinema whose current film “Rhino“ is being realized as a German-Ukrainian coproduction.  Jan Cvitkovic‘s Slovenian slacker comedy SISKA DE LUXE takes up the baton from his festival success “Gravehopping“ (2005). CITY OF BIRDS by Alena Alova is a timeless coming-of-age story among Russian-Jewish emigrants in an Italian small town of the 1980s. Serbian director Ognjen Glavonic explores the individual responsibility for the war crimes committed in the name of his nation in Kosovo with his film THE LOAD. Turkey is represented with two projects: BLOOD MONEY by Kıvanc Sezer and DETAILS OF A DREAM by Orhan Eskiköy and Özgür Dogan, whose earlier works “On the Way to School“ and “The Voice of My Father“ successfully toured the international festival circuit.  

The relationship between the individual and the family is a connecting link of this year’s projects, especially in extreme situations such as sickness, betrayal or economic difficulties. In different facets, this theme can be found in formally highly diverse film projects such as PIPELINE by Asif Rustamov (Aserbaidjan/Germany), Stelios Kammitsis‘ THE MAN WITH THE ANSWERS (Cyprus/Greece), Giedre Beinoriute’s BREATHING INTO MARBLE (Lithuania), Kuba Czekaj’s THE ERLPRINCE (Poland), Andrej Cretulescu’s SEVENTEEN SECONDS (Romania) or Blerta Zeqiri’s MARRIAGE. The latter, a director from Kosovo whose “The Return“  won the short movie award at Sundance two years ago, dares to inquire into the topic of homosexuality, mostly still taboo in her country of origin.  

Panel discussions and workshops about current themes and trends in the European film industry also are part of the program of the coproduction market led by Bernd Buder and Martina Bleis. This year’s focus is on financing options and the market situation for West-Eastern co-productions. In cooperation with the Torino Film Lab, connecting cottbus offers a workshop for audience design that will examine how producers can adapt their projects early on to the needs of their intended target audience. A second new partner is the Producers‘ Network, that within the context of the “Best Pitch Award“ will make available an accreditation for the Producers’ Network at the Marché du Film Cannes 2014. Every year, coco offers three monetary and in-kind prizes: the “Best Pitch Award“, selected by all participants, the “Post Pitch Award“ conferred by a jury of prominent industry representatives and the already mentioned “Special Pitch Award.

connecting cottbus is sustained by Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg GmbH, the MEDIA Program of the European Union and MDM / Mitteldeutsche Medienförderung GmbH. Supporting partners are Universal Publishing Production Music GmbH, MEDIA Antenne Berlin Brandenburg, Moscow Business Square, ACE, CineLink Sarajevo, the Nipkow Programm Berlin, EAVE,  the Torino Film Lab, the Producers Network,  and the MAIA Workshops.

The coco Post Pitch Award 2013 is sponsored by The Post Republic.

connecting cottbus is organized by the FilmFestival Cottbus GmbH.

A full list of all pitching projects 2013 is available on our website:

Press contact:                     

claudiatomassini & associates

International Film Publicity

Tel:+49 30 44 34 06 06 - Mobile:+49 173 205 5794

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GDYNIA: Tomasz Wasilewski, winner of the Young Directing Talent Prize at the 38th Gdynia Film Festival spoke exclusively with FNE about his new project currently in development.

WARSAW: After years in development, Sławomir Fabicki confirmed to FNE that he will start works on Bonobo Jingo in June of 2014. The cast of the film will include a chimpanzee.

WARSAW: A new Polish TV channel, Stopklatka, a joint initiative of Kino Polska TV, Stopklatka and Agora, has received a licence to broadcast and a spot in the first Polish ground digital television multiplex.

FNE asked Doris Pack for an update on Creative Europe and what she thinks needs to be on the agenda for the upcoming Warsaw Audiovisual Summitt. Click here for video.

bdellatif Kechiche has an unique ability to connect new and old, European and African, sexuality and classicism: the Tunisian-French actor, film director and screenwriter broke almost all the rules of the film industry - in a realistic and poetic way. Hungary's Jameson CineFest (September 12-22) honours him with a retrospective with the screening of four great movies. He made his directorial debut in 2000 with La Faute à Voltaire (Blame it on Voltaire). Then he directed Games of Love and Chance (L'Esquive), which won a César Award for Best Film and Best Director. He presented The Secret of the Grain (La Graine et le mulet) at the Mostra in Venice for which he was awarded the Special Jury Prize, such as later the Louis Delluc Prize and others César Awards for Best Film and Best Director, while the 2010 Black Venus (Vénus noire) was also premiered in Venice.

Blame it on Voltaire is an interesting experience about the social phenomenon of immigration. Everybody that feel intolerance for those who come in our countries in search of a little dignity should take a look at this story of people who live to the edge. The Games of of Love and Chance shows a group of teenagers of the Paris suburbs practice a performance of a Marivaux play .Abdelkrim, or Krimo (Osman Elkharraz) falls in love with Lydia (Sara Forestier).In order to try to seduce her, he accepts the role of Arlequin and joins the rehearsal. But his timidness and awkwardness keeps him from participating in the play as well as succeeding with Lydia. The Secret of the Grain stars Habib Boufares as an ageing immigrant from the Maghreb whose ambition to establish a successful restaurant as an inheritance for his large and disparate family meets sceptical opposition from the French bureaucracy. Black Venus is a story of Saartjie Baartman, who left her native South Africa with her master, Caezar, to expose her caged body to the audiences of London’s freak shows. Free and enslaved all at the same time, the "Hottentot Venus" became an icon. Supported by the Budapest French Institute.

Prague, 11 September 2013 –The 16th annual Slovenian Film Festival begins today in Portorož (11 – 15 September 2013). Each year it presents the Slovenian film production of the previous year. A Czech-Slovenian co-production gathering will be held as part of the festival’s special programme, with producers from both countries participating.

The Slovenian film festival, a place for filmmakers, the professional public, foreign guests and film fans to gather, officially begins today, though yesterday, on the eve of the festival, enthusiasts could feast on a cinematic delicacy: the film The Beginning Was Sin (Am Anfang war es Sünde) from the classic Czech director and founder of modern Slovenian cinematography, František Čáp, who lived and worked in exile following the Second World War.  

On Friday 13 September a Slovenian-Czech co-production gathering will be held for film professionals as part of a special programme for film professionals. The programme will begin with an introduction of the basic facts about both countries and will continue with a case study of the film A Night Too Young (Příliš mladá noc) from producer Jiří Konečný, which originated as a Czech-Slovenian co-production in 2012. The story of two twelve-year-old boys, who accidentally find themselves at a party in the flat of their young teacher, where they experience their first encounter with love and sexuality, was directed by Olmo Omerzu, a Slovenian living in Prague. The creative team of Konečný-Omerzu is now preparing another joint effort, Family Film (Rodinný film), once again as a Czech-Slovenian co-production.

The gathering will continue with a round-table discussion, with selected Czech and Slovenian producers attending. Czech cinematography will be represented by three young producers: Jiří Konečný from ENDORFILM, who has several successful international co-productions under his belt, Hanka Třeštíková from PRODUKCI TŘEŠTÍKOVÁ as a representative of Czech documentary work and Peter Badač from NUTPRODUKCE, whose work includes the production of the successful short animated film Pandas, awarded this year in Cannes.

On behalf of Slovenia it will be Miha Knific from NUKLEUS FILM SLOVENIA, focusing on production of commercials and feature films, Jaka Oman from INVIDA, which helps independent Slovenian and foreign filmmakers, Viva Videnović from ZAVOD STRUP PRODUKCIJA for animated work and also the talented director and producer Rok Biček from CVINGER FILM, whose film Class Enemy was recently screened as part of the Film Critics’ Week in Venice. “This event follows the presentation of new Czech and Slovenian cinematography, which took place at the end of March in Ljubljana,” added Markéta Šantrochová from the Czech Film Center. “During that occasion we looked for an opportunity to connect our countries on the level of film professionals, especially in light of the successful projects from endorfilm and Olmo Omerzu. Moreover, our countries are relatively close to each other, which really facilitates communication. For a number of years now we have been cooperating with our Slovenian colleagues at a joint stand in Berlin and so our producers also often encounter each other. We hope that the gathering in Portorož will bring more opportunities for cooperation.”

Partners from Slovenia:
The Slovenian Film Center, MEDIA Desk Slovenia and Slovenian Film Festival in Portorož

Partners from the Czech Republic:
The Czech Film Center, MEDIA Desk ČR and NFA

For more information on the festival see

Denisa Štrbová
e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
tel: +420 221 105 398



GDYNIA: Katarzyna Rosłaniec plans to leave the world of teenage girls in distress and is developing a drama inspired by  her present life experiences.

GDYNIA: Gdynia Film Festival focuses on showcasing Polish cinema, but the Polish Film Institute Awards remind the filmmakers and viewers how important it is to promote film and develop events and ideas that build audiences. During a special celebratory gala held at Gdynia on 10 September 2013, the Institute recognized the achievements of those people and institutions that were instrumental in publicizing Polish cinema both locally an abroad in the past year.

GDYNIA: Paweł Pawlikowski explores the issues of family and identity in his new drama Ida, , screening at the 38th Gdynia fest, which recounts the story of Anna, a novice in a convent determined to contact her only living relative, Wanda, before she takes her vows. Wanda informs her of her Jewish heritage and together the two women embark on a journey to discover the tragic history of their family.

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