COTTBUS: For the second year running, newcomer Kosovo received the pitching prize of Connecting Cottbus , voted on by the attendees of the 15 year old CEE pitching forum.
This year’s prize went to Marriage (produced by Beze) from producer Keka Kreshnik Berisha and director Blerta Zeqiri for a film which deals with the taboo (in Kosovo) topic of homosexuality and the lengths that gays go to in hiding their sexual orientation.
The postproduction award, consisting of in-kind services from Germany’s The Post-Republic went to The Load a Serbian coproduction from Non-Aligned Films directed by Ognjen Glavonic and represented by producer Dragana Jovovic.
Both films emerged with a full slate of meetings at day two of Connecting Cottbus, 15 apiece, while the Slovenian/Czech coproduction Siska de Luxe was a close contender with 11 meetings lined up. The slacker comedy from Jan Cvitkovic is produced by Alex Pavlin of Perfo with Czech coproducer Evolution Films on board.
German producers again accounted for the majority of the one-to-one meetings, along with a healthy mix of producers, sales agents, distributors and film funds also turning out. The Macedonian Film Fund was present, encouraging producers to apply for its minority coproduction funds, as was the Polish Film Institute. Other representatives hailed from Hungary, Italy, France, and the Czech Republic.
With Bernd Buder doing double duty overseeing both the Cottbus IFF and Connecting Cottbus, advisor Martina Bleis stepped up her responsibilities for the 2013 forum. The events concluded with an overview of 15 years of Connecting Cottbus