After unveiling all projects, works in progress, professionals and companies selected in the different sections of the market, WEMW is happy to announce the four juries and all the awards, as well as the complete programme of panels, lectures and case studies. 

The WEMW Co-Production Forum Jury consisting of Darya Bassel (Moon Man), Pierre Dallois (Ciclic Centre-Val de Loire), Gordan Matic (Film Center Serbia) and Elma Tataragic (Sarajevo IFF) will assign three cash prizes of the value of 5.000 € each: the Film Center Serbia Development Award, the Ciclic WEMW Award (granted by the French, Centre-Val de Loire Region) and the ArteVideo Co-Production Award. Moreover, all selected projects will be eligible for the EWA Network’s I HAVE A DREAM Award for Equality & Inclusion of the value of 1.000 €. In addition to these cash prizes, the Co-Production Forum will also feature a series of other major awards, including the EAVE Producers Workshop scholarship, the Marché du Film Producers Network Badges, the Pop Up Film Residency Award, the DAE Talent Development Prize in cooperation with the EFM and the #DocsConnect Taskovski Training Award.

The Last Stop Trieste Jury composed by Martina Droandi (Autlook Film Sales), Tereza Keilova (HBO Europe) and Freddy Olsson (Göteborg IFF), be called upon to decide the winner of the HBO EUROPE Award, a cash prize of the value of 1.000 €; whereas the This is IT Jury, headed by Remi Bigot (Semaine de la Critique), Vincenzo Bugno (Berlinale World Cinema Fund/TFL), Wouter Jansen (Square Eyes) and Giancarlo Chetta (Laser Film), will assign the LASER FILM Award, a prize consisting in 4.000 € in colour grading and an additional 40% discount on post-production facilities. Finally, the First Cut+ Jury, consisting of Esra Demirkiran (TRT), Stefan Ivančić (Locarno Film Festival) and Daniel Vadocky (Pluto Films), will award the TRT Prize, worth 5.000 €.

Alongside the traditional pitch of projects in development and the three Works in Progress sections for fiction and documentary films, WEMW has put together a series of sessions tackling different cutting-edge topics, thanks to the close collaboration with several major long-lasting content partners. 

The 2023 edition will open with the conversational inspiring keynote “The role of cinema as an identity marker & a mean of cultural reproduction”. The talk will attempt to highlight the concept of national identity and discuss whether cinema is an art-form that can shape, influence or promote related value sets. In the panel “Digital campaign for your Film Premiere”, First Cut+ will give hands-on tips on how to use digital tools to better understand the audience and to reach it with a meaningful, tailored-made campaign. EAVE will host the session “The Secret Life of a Producer” where Joanna Szymanska and Krystyna Kantor (Shipsboy, PL) will discuss their strategies on how to expand from a couch in the living-room to running a team of six, from a unique perspective of a Central European country. MIDPOINT Institute, key partner of the ‘Cold Open Inspirational Lab’, will organise the lecture “The State of Global Scripted Productions”, which aims at exploring the current opportunities and challenges facing local language scripted series. ACE Producers will host the “ACE Interview with Volodymyr Yatsenko”, founder of production company ForeFilm (UA). Finally, ESoDoc will give a comprehensive overview on how Think-Film works across Europe in the panel “Accelerate IMPACT: bring impactful films to the right audiences”, whereas thanks to the partnership with MEDICI-The Film Funding Journey (organised by FOCAL) Tamara Tatishvili, in conversation with fund representatives and producers, will explore the funding Landscape in Armenia, Moldova and Georgia in the panel dedicated to the 2023  East Spotlight Territories.

The new ecosystem of When East Meets West 2023 will include a record number of different industry activities running simultaneously over four intense days. Thanks to the close partnership with more than 15 European and international training programmes and funding bodies*, WEMW will feature 6 Inspirational Labs, the EAVE Slate programme, the First Cut Lab for films in editing phase, the EAVE Impact Think Tank on anti-racism, the EWA Mentoring Programme, the DAE Confidential chats about documentary film financing and distribution, the Circle Doc Accelerator breakfast sessions, thematic panels on the 2023 spotlight countries and a series of enlightening lectures, live-streamed on Cineuropa and accessible on Festival Scope Pro after the market, and available to more than 500 onsite and 200 online WEMW registered participants and the whole European film industry.

With this new ambitious 2023 edition, WEMW wishes to  become "more than a market", it will be a perfect mix of co-financing, training, matchmaking, mentoring, screening, networking, inspiration and brainstorming. Everything carefully shaped under one single underlying idea: there is something for everyone.

In 2023, the shooting of eleven live-action features will begin: Tartini’s Key (directed by Vinci Vogue Anžlovar, produced by Blade produkcija), Ciao Bela (directed by Jani Sever, produced by Sever & Sever ), the debut Little Trouble Girls (directed by Urška Djukić, produced by SPOK Films), the debut Fantasy (directed by Katarina Rešek – Kukla, produced by December), the debut Neither Voice (directed by Ester Ivakič, produced by Temporama), Block 5 (directed by Klemen Dvornik, produced by A Atalanta), Everything That’s Wrong With You (directed by Urša Menart, produced by Vertigo), the debut This Is a Robbery! (directed by Gregor Andolšek, produced by Temporama), The Lost Son (directed by Darko Štante, produced by Staragara), FC Freedom (directed by Boris Petkovič, produced by Iridium film), and Tales of Friuts and Monsters (directed by Gregor Božič, produced by Nosorogi).

At the 2022 calls for applications, the Slovenian Film Centre, Public Agency of the Republic of Slovenia (SFC), supported the following films:

  • Seven live-action feature projects with a total value of EUR 3,745,000: Whites Wash at Ninety (directed by Marko Naberšnik, produced by Perfo), 20 Metres (directed by Damjan Kozole, produced by Vertigo), FC Freedom (directed by Boris Petkovič, produced by Iridium film), Girl of the Night (directed by Luka Marčetič, produced by Temporama), Tales of Friuts and Monsters (directed by Gregor Božič, produced by Nosorogi), Tartini’s Key (directed by Vinci Vogue Anžlovar, produced by Blade produkcija), Ciao Bela (directed by Jani Sever, produced by Sever & Sever);
  • Two documentary feature projects with a total value of EUR 270,000: Once Upon a Time in the Soča Valley (directed by Ema Kugler, produced by Zavod Zank), OHO (directed by Damjan Kozole, produced by Vertigo);
  • Three live-action shorts with a total value of EUR 150,000: Rimbaud From My Backyard (directed by Matjaž Jamnik, Gaja Naja Rojec, produced by Nosorogi), Becoming/Unbecoming (directed by Ivana Vogrinc Vidali, produced by Temporama), Welcome Home (directed by Filip Jembrih, produced by Perfo);
  • Four animated shorts with a total value of EUR 123,700: Nobody Has Ever Looked at Elephants Like You (directed by Sandra Jovanovska, produced by Staragara), The Girl Who Was Not Afraid of Bears (directed by Lea Vučko, produced by Invida), Fin People (directed by Veronika Hozjan, produced by Dagiba), Dystopias (directed by Sara Bezovšek, produced by Temporama).

From the beginning of January 2023, the following films will be screened in Slovenian cinemas: the live-action documentary film Wracked Piano (directed by Miha Vipotnik, produced by Casablanca), the live-action film Grandpa Goes South (directed by Vinci Vogue Anžlovar, produced by A Atalanta), and at the end of January also the documentary film Melting Dreams (directed by Haidy Kancler, produced by Studio Virc). In April, the distribution of Riders – the first film by the director Dominik Mence, which had its world premiere at the Sarajevo Film Festival and won four Vesna Awards (for Best Leading Actor, Best Editing, Best Sound, and the Audience Award) at last year’s Festival of Slovenian Film in Portorož – will begin. The film was produced by the Staragara production house. This year’s cinema distribution will also include the following works: Wake Me (directed by Marko Šantić, produced by Vertigo), the debut The Man Without Guilt (directed by Ivan Gergolet, produced by Staragara), the experimental film The Birdbreeder (directed by Robert Černelč, produced by Tramal Films), Lunatic (directed by Igor Šterk, produced by A. A. C. Production), Role Model (directed by Nejc Gazvoda, produced by Perfo), The Last Hero (directed by Žiga Virc, produced by Studio Virc), and the documentary films Pero (directed by Damjan Kozole, produced by Vertigo), Cannabis Will Set You Free (directed by Miha Čelar, produced by Astral film), The Body (directed by Petra Seliškar, produced by Petra Pan Film), The Table (directed by Neli Maraž, produced by Cvinger film), and the debut Cent’anni (directed by Maja Doroteja Prelog, produced by Cvinger film).

 In 2022, Slovenian films were seen by 307,776 out of a total of 1,760,000 cinema-goers. According to the data collected so far, the estimated market share of Slovenian films in 2022 was 17.49 %. This is an absolute record: while this share exceeded 9 % in 2013 and 2016, it has never been higher than 10 % in independent Slovenia.

The SFC Director Nataša Bučar highlighted the current international successes of the Slovenian national cinema and its filmmakers: “The most successful year for Slovenian film is behind us. It was record-breaking both in terms of the number of viewers in the Slovenian cinemas and international successes, including the European Film Award for the short film Granny’s Sexual Life by Urška Djukić. Regarding the efforts to attract foreign productions to Slovenia, 2022 was also a landmark year, as the shooting of Netflix’s The Union, the biggest foreign production ever in Slovenia, took place in Piran. In 2023, the SFC will have significantly increased funding for national film production at its disposal, heralding an even brighter future. I am positive Slovenian film is in excellent shape and on the right track.”

In 2023, the SFC and its partners will continue to work on already established projects such as Our Films at Home, Slovenian Film Premiere, Slovenian Film Database, the so-called Scenarnica, Scenarnica ABC, and Dokumentarnica workshops, the Filmarija podcast, Incubator, as well as the new project titled Short Scene.

Meanwhile, the 26th Festival of Slovenian Film will take place between 3 and 8 October 2023 in Portorož.

The Swedish director, whose films have won not only the global film awards, but also the audience’s hearts, will hold a series of masterclasses on Lopud in Croatia

After the first two editions of the Ponta Lopud Festival which takes place on island of Lopud, nearby Dubrovnik, in Croatia, during which some of the greatest film professionals in the world, including Joel Coen, Frances McDormand and Pawel Pawlikowski, shared their knowledge and experience with the masterclass participants, the baton of a master will be passed to the multiple award-winning Swedish director Ruben Östlund. 

„For me filmmaking is social and that’s the biggest reason why I enjoy doing it. The intimate atmosphere of Ponta Lopud creates a great opportunity to meet colleagues and friends, talk about work and get inspiration. I’m really looking forward to it!”, said Ruben Östlund.

In 2022, the director of "Triangle of Sadness," a satire that "exposes roles and classes and metaphorically depicts the end of Western civilization," won the Palme d'Or at Cannes. In addition, the film won four major prizes at the European Film Awards: Best European film, Best director, Best actor, and Best screenplay. The awards by the film profession representatives did not stop there, and Östlund's "Triangle of Sadness" was nominated for an Oscar in the categories of Best film, Best director, and Best original screenplay. Co-founder of the Ponta Lopud Festival, Mirsad Purivatra from Sarajevo’s Obala Art Centar is the associate producer of this film.

“I'm happy to announce that Ruben Östlund, one of the greatest directors today, will be the guest of the Ponta Lopud Festival. The Sarajevo Film Festival has followed his career since the beginning, and we have loved not only his works but also the get-togethers and discussions we had during his visits to Sarajevo. Our mutual respect and love for the film resulted in our work together, and as a result, Obala Art Centar was one of the producers of his most recent, multi-award-winning movie, Triangle of Sadness. In the laid-back and intimate atmosphere of the Ponta Lopud Festival, Ruben will be sharing his wealth of knowledge and expertise with new regional authors, and we are looking forward to that very much.” said Mirsad Purivatra.

Long sequences are a defining feature of Östlund's work, which he structured and perfected while attending the University of Gothenburg. It was there that he also met Erik Hemmendorff, with whom he later co-founded the Plattform Produktion company.

Starting with his second feature, "Involuntary" (2008), which debuted in the Un Certain Regard programme, all of Östlund's subsequent films have had their world premieres at Cannes, making this gifted director a member of a select, elite group of filmmakers who have won awards twice at this prestigious festival.

Östlund was also awarded the Golden Bear in Berlin for his short film "Incident at the Bank". This film provided him with the chance to experiment with other techniques and styles, which became even more visible in his third feature, "Play," which had its world premiere in Cannes as part of the Directors' Fortnight programme and for which he later won the Nordic Prize, the most prestigious Scandinavian cinema award. In addition to receiving nominations for the prestigious Golden Globe and the Oscar, his fourth feature film, "Force Majeure," had its world debut in Cannes' Un Certain Regard programme and won the Jury Prize. His fifth movie, "The Square" from 2017, won Östlund not only the Palme d'Or at Cannes, but also got nominations for the Golden Globe and the Oscar.

In addition to winning the Palme d'Or, his most recent film "Triangle of Sadness" opened the 28th Sarajevo Film Festival, and Ruben Östlund was awarded the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo in recognition of his outstanding contribution to film art.

The third edition of the Ponta Lopud Festival takes place on 20-24 June 2023 on a beautiful island of Lopud, nearby Dubrovnik, in Croatia. The Festival is a creative hub that organizes invite-only masterclasses and lectures by the greatest filmmakers working today, specifically tailored for directors, actors and cinematographers of the new generation in Southeast Europe. In a relaxing and friendly island atmosphere, the Festival creates opportunities for regional rising stars to meet with top film professionals and talk about film, visual art and the art of living that has been practiced in the region for centuries. The founders of the Ponta Lopud Festival are Mirsad Purivatra, former director and founder of the Sarajevo Film Festival and Tilda Grossel Bogdanovic from island Lopud.

The Ponta Lopud Festival will once again invite around twenty filmmakers from the region – directors, actors and cinematographers who are on the verge of launching their careers internationally.

All news and information about the Ponta Lopud Festival are available on the Festival official website and the Festival social media.

Online film and drama series submissions for the programmes of the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival, which will be held from 11th to 18th August 2023, are now open.

Film authors and producers can submit their films / drama series for the following programmes:

- Competition Programme - Feature Film

- Competition Programme - Documentary Film

- Competition Programme - Short Film

- Competition Programme - Student Film

- In Focus

- Avant Premiere - specialized for regional drama series

- Open Air

- Kinoscope

- Summer Screen

- European Shorts

- Children’s Programme

- TeenArena

- Dealing with the Past

- BH Film Programme

All entries for programmes: Competition Programme – Feature Film, Competition Programme – Documentary Film, Competition Programme – Short Film, Competition Programme – Student Film, In Focus, Avant Premiere, Open Air, Kinoscope, Summer Screen, European Shorts, Children’s Programme, TeenArena, Dealing with the Past and BH Film, unless otherwise specified, must be submitted to the Festival for selection by May 26th, 2023.

The submissions fees, unless otherwise specified at the film submission page are as following:

Competition Programme – Feature Film – FREE to submit!

Competition Programme – Documentary Film – FREE to submit!

Competition Programme – Short Film – FREE to submit!

Competition Programme – Student Film – FREE to submit!

BH Film – FREE to submit!

All other programmes open for submission:

- Feature length film and Middle-length film (60 minutes in length or more; 31 to 59 minutes in length) – 80 BAM or 40 EUR

- Short film (up to 30 minutes in length, including closing credits) – 40 BAM or 20 EUR

Please find rules and regulations and online entry form HERE.

Download press release HERE.

The 29th Sarajevo Film Festival will take place from 11th to 18th August 2023.

Press Office

Sarajevo Film Festival

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Each year, goEast shines a spotlight on the oeuvre of a notable Eastern European filmmaker with an extensive retrospective. In so doing, the festival chooses to alternate between accomplished veteran directors and filmmakers who are in the middle of their career journeys. Following last year's Homage to Lana Gogoberidze, the 2023 Portrait is devoted to Jasmila Žbanić, in an extension of the line of strong women from Central and Eastern Europe at the heart of the festival's programming. Jasmila Žbanić is without a doubt among the most significant filmmakers from Bosnia and Herzegovina – and her recent European Film Award for QUO VADIS, AIDA? (2020) represents a great success on the international stage.

Born in Sarajevo in 1974 and educated at the city's Academy of Fine Arts, in 1997 the Bosnian director founded the artists' collective "Deblokada", which has also produced her films since its inception. The name was coined in the 1990s in reference to the siege of Sarajevo. Following the city's liberation, the after-effects of the war remained palpable in the form of diverse political, economic and psychological blockages, which have continued to shape the society of Bosnia and Herzegovina into the present day.

Jasmila Žbanić tackles these impasses through cinema. Her video art and documentary films were already featured at the documenta in Kassel in 2004. In her numerous, internationally award-winning films, the Bosnian director processes traumatic events and personal experiences of the impact of the Bosnian War. This conflict, nearly forgotten in Western Europe in the interim, is a recurrent theme in Žbanić's films. Her feature-film debut GRBAVICA (2006) was awarded the Golden Bear at the 2006 Berlinale. The film treats the systematic rape of women as a means of waging war, which managed to spark a political discussion in her native country. A look at Ukraine shows that this subject is today sadly still as relevant as ever.

Jasmila Žbanić's critical engagement with essential socio-political issues runs through her body of cinematic work like a guiding thread. For instance, QUO VADIS, AIDA? (2020) grapples with the massacre at Srebrenica. However, her filmography also includes less dramatic productions, such as the comedy LOVE ISLAND (2014). Somewhat astonished, she answered the question as to why she had made a film that wasn't about war and its effects by saying that she does only something when she has something to say about a topic and not when it is expected of her. Following her success at the European Film Awards, she was also hired as a series director in the United States, for example most recently for the video game adaptation THE LAST OF US (2022).

goEast is delighted to be able to welcome Jasmila Žbanić personally to Wiesbaden in April. Curator and film scholar Borjana Gaković will be moderating the workshop conversation with the director. Alongside her fiction features, the comprehensive retrospective will also include screenings of a selection of Žbanić's documentary films and shorter works.

Empowering Emerging Artists and Producers:  East-West Talent Lab

In 2023, goEast's educational program for up-and-coming film talent is open to all filmmakers from Central and Eastern Europe as well as Germany who wish to develop their current documentary film projects further and network with like-minded peers. Running parallel to goEast Film Festival, the East-West Talent Lab is home to an intensive co-ordinated workshop program, one-on-one mentoring for projects and a public pitching session in front of a three-member expert jury.

The following prizes are awarded in the scope of the East-West Talent Lab: 

-          the Renovabis Research Grant for a documentary film project focussing on human rights issues, endowed with 3,500 euros in prize money;

-          the Pitch-the-Doc Award, featuring a further education prize package valued at 500 euros. 

In addition, the EWTL master class, traditionally open to the public, will also be taking place once again: the Polish directorial duo of Elwira Niewiera and Piotr Rosołowski, whose film THE HAMLET SYNDROME (2023) was recently released in German theatres, will be offering the audience insight into their cinematic work.


Beginning Friday, 3 March, members of the press can register here for accreditation for goEast – Festival of Central and Eastern European Film. During the festival, accredited industry guests and members of the press will receive access to an online media library featuring the festival films. Accreditation is free of charge for members of the press who wish to report on the festival.

Save the Date: goEast Press Conference

The press conference will take place at Wiesbaden's Caligari FilmBühne as a live, in-person event on the morning of Wednesday, 19 April, starting at 11:00.

The 19th edition of the Docu Talents from the East – a closely watched presentation of the most remarkable new documentary projects from Central and Eastern Europe – will take place on August 13 during the Cinelink Industry Days at Sarajevo FF. 

The presentations by directors and producers of eight selected documentary projects will be followed by one-to-one meetings with sales agents, festival representatives and other decision-makers accredited at Sarajevo FF. 

The call for submissions to the 19th Docu Talents from the East is open until May 31. The eligible projects include mid-length or feature-length documentary projects at the post-production stage with expected premiere between September 2023 and August 2024. The eligible countries are Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Russia (only for projects not supported by the Russian state institutions), Slovakia, Slovenia, Serbia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan. 

For the last 19 years, Docu Talents has served as a launch pad for many documentaries by both renowned and emerging directors from the region. And each year, we discover more and more exceptional documentary projects and daring authors coming from Eastern Europe. We really look forward to this year’s crop,” says Marek Hovorka, director of Ji.hlava IDFF which has curated the programme since 2005.  

Laila Pakalniņa, Vladimir Mansky, Bartek Konopka, Piotr Stasik, Peter Kerekes, Dmitrii Kalashnikov and Helena Třeštíková are among the directors whose projects were brought up by Docu Talents. The films had later world and international premieres at major film festivals including in Cannes, Berlin, Locarno, Rotterdam, and Sundance.

Please find more information in the enclosed press release. For more news visit or contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Sarajevo Film Festival is honored to announce a new impact award – CineLink Impact Award (€20,000 in kind) presented by Think-Film Impact Production.

For more than twenty years, the Sarajevo Film Festival’s industry section CineLink Industry Days continues its mission to develop, support and present the most promising projects from the region in various development stages and formats. It offers the opportunity for filmmakers to showcase work, connect with industry professionals, and secure the resources they need to bring their projects to fruition. As a major hub for Southeast European film professionals, it has played a crucial role in the expansion of cinematic co-production in the region. It fosters collaboration and innovation within the industry, while promoting emerging talent from the South East Europe region and beyond.

Continuing in that spirit, CineLink Industry Days is honored to announce a new impact award CineLink Impact Award presented by Think-Film Impact Production. The purpose of the Award is to provide support in developing a comprehensive impact campaign for a project in post-production phase participating in the CineLink Work-in-Progress or Docu Rough Cut Boutique. The eligibility of a project for the Award will be determined by the CineLink team. The Award comprises of in-kind consultation services worth €20,000 for the impact campaign.

CineLink Work in Progress chooses post-production projects to showcase to exclusive guests at the Sarajevo Film Festival, including international sales agents, top festival programmers, distributors, public fund representatives, and post-production houses. Meanwhile, the Docu Rough Cut Boutique, co-organized by the Sarajevo Film Festival and Balkan Documentary Center, serves as a regional platform for documentaries in the advanced stages of editing.

The winner will be selected by CineLink Impact JuryThe jury members are: Amy SheperdRory Thost, and Faridah Gbadamosi. Amy Sheperd is the Chief Operating Officer at Think-Film Impact Production, an award-winning impact media company with specialist expertise at the intersection of film and social change. Rory Thost is the Head of Documentary at Participant, the leading media company dedicated to entertainment that stands at the intersection of art and activism. Faridah Gbadamosi is a senior programmer at the Tribeca Festival, director of Distribution at Open Your Eyes and Think MF, a consultant on different film projects and a freelance culture critic, a pop culture lover, who focuses in her work on making film spaces more inclusive.

“Filmmakers from Southeast Europe are known to tackle social issues in their films with great care and dedication. However, the post-screening impact of these films on society is, unfortunately, often overlooked. To address this gap, we are delighted to announce our collaboration with Think-Film Impact Production. This partnership offers either one feature or one documentary film the opportunity to create a campaign that can expand its reach and engage audiences on a deeper level. By doing so, we hope to contribute to a wider, more informed and enlightened audience”, comments Maša Marković, the Sarajevo Film Festival’s Head of Industry.

Danielle Turkov Wilson, Founder & CEO of Think-Film Impact Production explains the motivation behind the award:

“Think-Film is honoured to be partnering with the Sarajevo Film Festival to launch the CineLink Impact Award. Filmmakers today are increasingly embedding impact thinking and actions into productions as they seek to engage and mobilise audiences for good. This Award recognises the unique value that impact holds for film success, and honours the creatives who are harnessing its potential to unlock the full power of their film.”

About Think-Film Impact Production:
Think-Film Impact Production is an award-winning impact media company with specialist expertise at the intersection of film and social change. Think-Film partners with world-leading film, television, AR, VR and music artists to drive forward decisions, commitments and actions that bring measurable, lasting change to global situations. Pioneers of Cannes impACT in 2021, Think-Film also leads impact programmes at the world's top film festivals, training filmmakers and shaping the film industry to be more sustainable and impactful. 

More info about Sarajevo Film Festival


The industrial department of the Sarajevo Film Festival, CineLink Industry Days, will organize a CineLink workshop in Slano (Croatia) from 20 to 24 June, focusing on eight film projects in development.

The CineLink team in Slano will focus on improving production values by connecting projects and film professionals, and will offer authors assistance through extensive script development sessions.

This year's CineLink Co-Production Market selection consists of eight projects from the workshop in Slano. CineLink Co-Pro Market 2023, during the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival, present a total of 11 in-development feature film projects in front of more than 150 producers, distributors, and sales agents from more than 40 countries.

While the Ponta Lopud Festival is being held nearby, participation in the workshop in Slano will give participants the opportunity to interact and network with film professionals and renowned guests. They will also attend the masterclass that will be held at the Ponta Lopud Festival by Ruben Östlund, two-time winner of the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival and last year's winner of the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo Film Festival.

This year's list of the CineLink Co-Production Market consists of established filmmakers, as well as those who are making their debut with feature films. CineLink welcomes the award-winning alumni of the Sarajevo Film Festival, including Zeynep Dilan Süren, Dušan Kasalica and Gabriel Tzafkas. The list also includes authors who have premiered their previous films at renowned film festivals, such as Erenik Beqiri with THE VAN, who was nominated at the Cannes Film Festival for Best Short Film, and won the Best Short Film Award at the Les Arcs European Film Festival, Olivér Rudolf with the film FONICA M-120, nominated for the Cinefondation Award at the Cannes Film Festival 2021, Marius Olteanu with the feature film MONSTRI, premiered at Berlinale 2019 and Kateryne Gornostai with the film STOP-ZEMLIA, which premiered at Berlinale in 2021. CineLink would like to welcome new and most promising authors from the region, including Josip Lukić, Đorđe Vojvodić, Ana Kitanova and Brigita Kanyaro.

Sarajevo Film Festival and CineLink Industry Days have built a reputation by diligently encouraging and discovering talent through various programs. Among the successful film achievements created with CineLink Industry Days, the film A SAFE PLACE stands out, from director Juraj Lerotić, who won two Hearts of Sarajevo awards at last year's Sarajevo Film Festival: for Best Film and Best Actor.

CineLink Industry Days for Co-Production Market offers a significant number of awards through cooperation with regional film funds such as the Slovenian Film Centre, the Film Centre of Serbia, and the Film Centre of Montenegro, as well as international partners: Eurimages and Arte. The diverse range of accolades presented at CineLink Industry Days makes it a stable starting platform for international and regional success.

The 29th Sarajevo Film Festival will be held from 11 to 18 August 2023

Industry Administration
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The CineLink workshop in Slano started on June 20 with activities for projects of this year's selection of CineLink Co-Production Market which will present a total of 11 feature-length film projects during the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival.

For the next three days, the participants of the workshop in Slano will have the opportunity to attend the masterclass of Juraj Lerotić, whose debut feature film SAFE PLACE developed at CineLink and has so far received 15 awards, including two Hearts of Sarajevo: for best film and best actor; then Juha Kousmanen, a Finnish director and screenwriter whose films have received multiple awards at festivals such as the Cannes Film Festival and the Locarno Film Festival, Konstantinos Kontovrakis, producer and co-producer of more than 25 internationally successful films, including the TRIANGLE OF SADNESS from Ruben Östlund, two-time winner of the Golden Palm at the Cannes Film Festival and last year's winner of the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo Film Festival, and Giorgos Karnavas, a member of the European Academy of Film and the founder of the Synch Festival.

As for activities that include work on script development and production value, the CineLink team organized a series of meetings with mentors whose work achieved international success. Among the mentors with whom the participants will have the opportunity to develop their films are successful screenwriters and script consultants such as Franz Rodenkirchen, Francoise von Roy and Elma Tataragić, independent and influential producers of art-house films from the region such as Jelena Mitrović from Serbia, Bianca Oana from Romania, as well as Yorgos Tsourgiannis from Greece, and others.

The director, Dušan Kasalica, is among the participants in the CineLink workshop in Slano, who shared his impressions after the first day: “As a director coming from Montenegro, it makes perfect sense for Sarajevo Film Festival, as the most important festival in the region, to be my first address for all my projects. I was fortunate to participate in nearly every programme of the Sarajevo Film Festival, from the Sarajevo Talent Campus, to a selection of short films. My first feature film also participated at CineLink, I had a premiere at the Sarajevo Film Festival, so I really feel that my career is inextricably linked to the Sarajevo Film Festival and it was completely logical for me to apply for another feature film at CineLink.”

Kasalica emphasizes that CineLink is the best possible way for the project to be presented to potential partners and foundations.

“On the other hand, at this stage of CineLink, it is valuable for me to hear an opinion about the project from numerous mentors with whom we look at the project from different aspects, both from the creative side and at the scenario level, as well as from the financial side. CineLink always tries to bring together a team of people who know how to approach the project in the right way. I have the impression that we always get the right mentors who understand the project, but also understand the needs of that project, as well as the way it is best to correct everything that we are working on to actually make the final of that project as good as possible," Kasalica said.

The 29th Sarajevo Film Festival will take place from 11th to 18th of August 2023.

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Special Award for Promoting Gender Equality, sponsored by Mastercard, is dedicated to the promotion of gender equality for debut films by female authors. Films and directors eligible for the Special Award for Promoting Gender Equality are not limited to Competition strands and include other programmes and territories as well, provided that the film is the director’s first feature film.

The Sarajevo Film Festival Special Award for Promoting Gender Equality was established by Sarajevo Film Festival in 2021 as a continuation of the activities in which the Sarajevo Film Festival contributes to the establishment of women's equality in the film industry.

Jury members who will serve on the Jury for Special Award for Promoting Gender Equality at the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival are producer Jay Van Hoy, Festival Director of Sydney Film Festival Nashen Moodley and Head of Programming in the Eye Filmmuseum Mila Schlingemann.

Jay Van Hoy 

Jay Van Hoy has produced over 30 films including the Cannes-award-winning AMERICAN HONEY (2016) by Andrea Arnold, the Sundance-award-winning box-office success THE WITCH (2015) by Robert Eggers and his Oscar® nominated follow-up THE LIGHTHOUSE (2019). Other titles include Mike Mills’ Oscar® winning BEGINNERS (2010), Kelly Reichardt’s OLD JOY (2006), David Lowery’s AIN'T THEM BODIES SAINTS (2013), and Ira Sachs’ LOVE IS STRANGE (2014) and KEEP THE LIGHTS ON (2012). Jay Van Hoy is a long-time advisor at the Sundance Institute Creative Producing Lab, a participant in the creation of the Catalyst program at Sundance, and a mentor for the Cinetrust mentorship program at Cinereach.

Nashen Moodley 
Festival Director of Sydney Film Festival 
(Australia, South Africa)

Nashen Moodley is in his twelfth year as Festival Director of Sydney Film Festival. During his tenure, the festival has grown vastly. Moodley’s career in film programming has encompassed many leadership roles, including Manager at the Durban International Film Festival (2001–2011) and as a Programming Consultant for Dubai International Film Festival (2005–2017). During Moodley’s 11 years at Durban International Film Festival, he dramatically increased its content and reach. He has been a jury member at various film festivals worldwide including San Sebastián, Busan, Toronto, Rotterdam, El Gouna, Durban and Tokyo film festivals. Born in South Africa in 1978, Moodley studied English and philosophy at the University of Natal and worked as a journalist before turning to film programming.

Mila Schlingemann 
Head of Programming in the Eye Filmmuseum 

Mila Schlingemann (1978, Amsterdam) completed Media Studies at the University of Amsterdam. Schlingemann was co-founder of the Unheard Film Festival, an annual festival about the narrative power of sound in film. Next to working for student cinema Kriterion, Mila was the project developer and producer for Rocket Cinema. Rocket Cinema is a long-standing film festival, hosted by world famous music venue Paradiso, which combines live music and film at various sites in Amsterdam. Then, after a few years of working as a programmer in Flemish Arts Centre De Brakke Grond, a cutting edge cultural organisation in the centre of Amsterdam, she returned to the film industry, and started working at Eye Filmmuseum, as Head of Programming. Eye is the national museum for film and the art of moving image in the Netherlands. It stores, restores and presents film; from classics, blockbusters and early avant-garde films to the very latest VR experiments. As Head of Programming, Schlingemann is responsible for the entire film program, varying from retrospectives, theme programming, special events, and recurring series, like the VR series, Xtended. For the latter she has brought “Carne y Arena”, the internationally acclaimed VR installation/ immersive exhibition, on immigrants in the US, made by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, to the Netherlands. Next to her work at Eye Filmmuseum Schlingemann is also on the advisory board of the cultural organisation Transnatural, that exhibits artworks where man, nature and technology merge. The platform works with a multi-faceted mixture of national and international creators, thinkers, businesses, R&D labs, studios and research institutes.

29th Sarajevo Film Festival will take place from 11th to 18th of August 2023

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