Bulgaria’s Cinemania Festival To Take Place in Re-Opened Cinemas


    SOFIA: Bulgaria’s major annual film festival Cinemania, which was postponed several times because of the COVID-19 pandemic, is finally taking place 8 – 22 April 2021 in cinemas at 30% of their capacity.

    Produced and organised for 34 years by the Sofia National Palace of Culture and regularly greeted by a large audience as the country’s main November film event, Cinemania returns five months later with 34 new international hits and several retrospectives.

    All the screenings will take place physically at the National Palace of Culture Hall1 (which has 3,380 seats) and the Lumiere hall (with 370 seats), as well as at the House of Cinema, the Odeon Cinema, the Vlaykova Cinema, the Euro Cinema, and the G-8 Cinema.

    For the first time Cinemania will have VR screenings, which will take place at the National Palace of Culture Hall 4 (120 seats).

    Two Bulgarian 2020 feature films will have their Sofia premieres: Ivan Vladimirov’s Scenes from the Life of an Actress, produced by Gala film (winner of the Jury Special Award, Best Director and Best Script at the 2020 Golden Rose FF), and Dimitar Petkov’s The Short Straw, produced by ARS Digital Studio.

    The Naked Truth about Zhiguli Band directed by Victor Bojinov and produced by Concept studio, which will be screened on 13 April 2021, will be the first film shot under the COVID-19 Safety Protocol (in August 2020) to premiere in 2021.

    According to Vladimir Trifonov, Chief Film Programmer of the National Palace of Culture, “Despite the sanitary restrictions, the interest in theatrical screenings is coming back and tickets are sold out rather quickly”.

    “Cinemania has always defended physical screenings, which is why this year our slogan is: Cinema is alive and will always be”, Trifonov also told FNE.

    The festival, which opened with Ivaylo Hristov’s internationally awarded black and white drama Fear (produced by Pro Film), will also honour the memory of Federico Fellini, Michel Piccoli and Sean Connery.

    The French Cultural Institute will return with the 10th edition of the traditional French Films Festival, bringing this year 11 new titles to be seen in Sofia, Plovdiv and Varna. The French Film Festival is also included in Cinemania.