KARLOVY VARY: The Hungarians make up the one of the largest national contingents in Karlovy Vary in 2009 with five films, -seven including coproductions,- screening in various official programmes and dozens of Hungarian directors, producers and actors attending the festival.
Hungarian director Arpad Sopsits was one of the first to arrive in the Czech spa town and his film The Seventh Circle, produced by Hunnia Film Studio (www.hunniafilm.hu), had its international premier in the East of the West competition yesterday. This is the third film in the trilogy that began with his films Shooting Gallery and Abandoned. Shooting Gallery won the Youth Prize in 1990 in Cannes when it screened in the Directors Fortnight. Abandoned won the main prize at the Montreal FF. The Seventh Circle is based on true events in Hungary when a group of children began to experiment with good and evil until their experiments spun out of control.
"It's my first visit to Karlovy Vary," said Sopsits, "but the audiences are young and enthusiastic and I am very interested to see their reaction to my film. It's not an easy film, not entertainment."
The Hungarian film industry has been riding high the last five years after the government passed a landmark tax rebate scheme. Last year the country produced 28 feature films but perhaps more importantly Hungarian producers have become one of the most important players for coproductions in Europe. Two of the seven films in KVIFF have a Hungarian label because of Hungarian participation as coproducers.
But the global financial crisis has hit Hungary hard and while Sopsits said the impact has not really hit the film industry so far he expected to see its effects in the second part of this year.
"Things are sure to get more difficult financially but now in Hungary we have the Hungarian film law which means that at least we have some guarantees of support," said Sopsits.
Hungarian director Gyorgy Palfi is also expected to roll into town for his film I'm Not your Friend which screens in competition on 8 July together will all his cast. Palfi became known on the international circuit with his debut Hukkle but it was his kinky and violent shocker Taxidermia that he is best known for. His new film has its international premier in KVIFF.
Hungarian films screening in Karlovy Vary:
I'm Not Your Friend directed by Gyorgy Palfi: Official Competition
Produced by Eurofilm Studio (www.eurofilm.hu)
Coproduced by Filmax
8 July at 20:00
9 July at 10:00
The Seventh Circle directed by Arpad Sopsits: East of the West Competition
Produced by Hunnia Film Studio (www.hunniafilm.hu)
4 July at 19:30
5 July at 13:30
Lost Times directed by Aron Matyassy: East of the West Competition
Produced by Unio Film (www.uniofilm.hu)
7 July at 19:30
8 July at 13:30
Made in Hungaria directed by Gergely Fonyo: Variety Critics Choice
Produced by Next Station Production (www.puskasfilm.com)
6 July at 21:30
Sweet Emma, Dear Bobe directed by Istvan Szabo: 20 Years of Freedom programme
Produced by Objektiv Filmstudio (www.objektivfilm.hu)
4 July at 11:00
5 July at 19:30
My Husband's Women
Directed by Ivan Vojnar
Produced by Arina SRO
Coproduced by Negativ SRO and Tivoli Films (www.tivolifilms.com)Hungary
7 July at 12:30
Directed by Peter Strickland
Produced by Libra Film
Coproduction partner Hungary
8 July at 22:00
10 July at 9:00
FNE is a partner of Hungarian film through its joint project with Filmhu supported by MMKA the Hungarian Motion Picture Foundation