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Robert Bodrog


The latest film industry and film festival news across Europe.


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Between the Comic and the Tragic: An Interview With Director Kenji Yamauchi

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In his feature film debut “Being Mitsuko” which had its world premiere on October 13 at the Warsaw Film Festival, Japanese director Kenji Yamauchi walks a fine genre line between the comic and the tragic. And it works. Imbued with a strong dose of black humor and absurdist elements, Yamauchi has crafted an intricate narrative that revolves around the lives of Mitsuko and Emi Shinozaki, two 20-something sisters living in their family house in suburban Tokyo.  But there is hardly...

Taking Bulgarian Cinema on the Road: An Interview With Director Konstantin Bojanov

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Walking around New York, London or Paris, if you offered someone 100 dollars, pounds or euros to name just one Bulgarian film or director, you'd likely still have the money in your pocket after an hour of trying. Of course, this fact has nothing to do with a lack of productivity or talent in contemporary Bulgarian cinema.And with “Avé”, the feature film debut by director Konstantin Bojanov, Bulgarian cinema's profile is likely to be raised higher, as audiences discover a deeply personal and...

Celebrating Poland's First Screen Goddess: Pola Negri Film to Screen in Paris on September 12

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A long lost film starring Polish-born silent film star Pola Negri will be screened in Paris on September 12 at the Balzac Cinema as part of the International Cultural Programme of the current Polish EU Presidency.Produced by the prodigious UFA studios in Germany in 1918 and directed by Hungarian Eugen Illes, the film “Mania: A History of Workers in a Cigarette Factory” (“Die Geschichte einer Zigarettenarbeiterin”) was long thought to be lost. However, in 2006 the Polish National Film Arc...

Representing Poland at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival

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The biggest annual film event in North America kicks off September 8 as the Toronto International Film Festival celebrates its 36th year. Toronto always delivers an extravaganza of cinematic fare sufficient to overwhelm the most diehard of film fans-- or film geeks as the case may be. And this year should prove to be no exception, with (at last count) 268 features and 68 short films scheduled to be screened from 65 countries.Although the majority of media attention will be focused on red carpet ...

Transatlantyk Festival Plans Miloś Forman Retrospective

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The Transatlantyk Poznan International Film and Music Festival will honor renowned Czech film director Miloś Forman with a retrospective at this year's inaugural event, which runs from August 5-13, in western Poland. The series will screen many of the director's most popular and critically acclaimed works, ranging from his early films Black Peter (1964), Loves of a Blonde (1965) and The Firemen's Ball (1967), as well as the director's documentaries and short films produced in Czech...

Gdynia Film Festival Wraps for Another Year: “Essential Killing” Sweeps Top Prizes

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Here in Poland, the 2011 Gdynia Film Festival wrapped up on Saturday. Celebrating its 36th year, the festival showcases the best of Polish and eastern European cinema, featuring work by established and emerging film makers. “Essential Killing” received the Golden Lions first prize in this year's Main Competition. Directed by Jerzy Skolimowski, the film tells the story of a young suspected insurgent (played by Vincent Gallo) who is captured in Afghanistan. After being transported...

Essential Filmmaking: An Interview With Legendary Polish Director Jerzy Skolimowski

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Jerzy Skolimowski is a busy man these days. The Polish director's latest film Essential Killing made headlines this autumn when it won the Special Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival, and the film's lead, Vincent Gallo, took the prize for best actor. The film was released in Poland in October, and audiences have been filling cinemas to see what is admittedly a unique film in terms of story and style. In the following interview, Mr. Skolimowski discusses the origins of the film, the funding ...

Scorched, Canadian Film, Wins Top Prize at Warsaw Film Festival

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The Canadian film “Scorched” ("Incendies") by director Denis Villeneuve won first prize in the international competition at this year's Warsaw Film Festival.The results were announced at a press conference Saturday shortly after 2000h CET by chair of the jury, Antonia Bird.Olivier Masset-Depasse was named best director for his film "Illegal", a Belgian, Luxembourg, French co-production. The Special Jury Award went to the screenplay of "Peryferie" (Outbound), a R...

Kung-Fu Magyar: An Interview With Hungarian Director Bence Miklauzic

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 Kung-Fu Magyar?A comedy. A story of friendship and rivalry. A kung-fu film without a fight. Huh? Confused? You won't be after listening to Bence Miklauzic, talking about his new film, Children of the Green Dragon, one of the most popular films this week among audiences at the Warsaw Film Festival.Hungarian film director Bence Miklauzic is forty years old. And his second feature film, Children of the Green Dragon, had its European debut this week at the Warsaw Film Festival. Just back from the ...

Warsaw Film Festival Jury Interview

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 Tell Your Own StoriesRobert Bodrog interviews Antonia Bird, Francois da Silva and Mike Downey, members of the jury for the 2010 Warsaw Film Festival's international competition, about the state of eastern European cinema, story telling and how filmmakers can reach a global audience.RB: Ms. Bird, how did you come to be the chairperson of the jury this year? Do you have a connection to Warsaw?Antonia Bird: I can only guess. I was at the Sundance Filmmaker labs in Utah. You know, Robert Redford's...

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