Karlovy Vary Goes Wild for Priests Children

    The Priest’s Children directed by Vinko Bresan The Priest’s Children directed by Vinko Bresan

    KARLOVY VARY: The Croatian box office smash hit The Priest’s Children ( www.interfilm.hr ) brought Karlovy Vary IFF ( www.kviff.com ) audiences to their feet with a standing ovation and a full five minutes of applause -- a once-in-a-decade reception – at its international premiere on 3 July 2013.

    Director Vinko Bresan was brought back for a string of bows, and sales agent Loic Magneron of WIDE Management which is handling the film for international sales said: “We were not sure how it would be received by Czech audiences. I’ve never seen anything like it,” he told FNE.

    The Priest’s Children set a box office record in Croatia on its opening week-end in January 2013, selling some 34,000 tickets and taking in 145,000 EUR. The film has already been sold internationally to Oficine-Ubu for Italy, Kiss Communicacio in Spain and Andorra, KIB Media for Norway and Iceland and Starlet for Sweden.

    The film also represented a success for the Croatian Audiovisual Center ( www.havc.hr ) which supported the comedy with one of its largest grants, some 665,000 EUR. Film professionals at Karlovy Vary IFF point to Croatia as having one of the most dynamic film industries in the region, thanks in large part to the development of HAVC which was founded just five years ago.

    Magneron told FNE that the film had received numerous festival invitations, but was waiting for the response from Karlovy Vary, adding that the next step will be to sit down with HAVC to discuss strategy. With only two market screenings prior to the Karlovy Vary premiere, sales are still at an early stage. Considering the resounding laughter that filled the jam-packed Great Hall, The Priest’s Children looks like a favorite to pick up at least one prize at Karlovy Vary: the Audience Award.