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Sofia International Film Festival


For 16th year Sofia International Film Festival will gather together in Sofia films, guests, stars, journalists and cinema fans from 9th until 18th March 2012. Featured in Variety’s Top 50 of cinema festivals, the event presents Bulgaria to the world as the host one of the important film festivals in Europe and takes place annually in March. What started as a thematic music film festival, went through 15 previous editions to become the cinema event of the year, bringing the current world cinema trends to the domestic viewers in Bulgaria and the latest in Bulgarian cinema to the rest of the world.

Since 1997 more than 1,600 feature films and documentaries have been screened within the festival’s framework. More than 1,000 distinguished guests have attended, including established professionals such as Wim Wenders, Volker Schlondorff, Katja Riemann and Karl Baumgartner (Germany), Alan Parker, Peter Greenaway, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, Tony Palmer and David Mackenzie (United Kingdom), Nikita Mikhalkov, Andrei Konchalovsky, Karen Shakhnazarov and Bakhtyar Khudojnazarov (Russia), Jiri Menzel, Jan Sverak, Jan Hrebejk and Petr Zelenka (Czech Republic), Emir Kusturica (Yugoslavia), Krzysztof Zanussi (Poland), Otar Iosseliani (Georgia), Jean-Claude Carriere, Agnes Varda, Siegfried and Jacques Dorfmann (France), Assumpta Serna (Spain), Bent Hamer and Unni Straume (Norway), Jafar Panahi and Babak Payami (Iran), Jerry Schatzberg, Michael Wadleigh and Lech Kowalski (USA), Jos Stelling (the Netherlands), Mika Kaurismaki (Finland), Friðrik Þór Friðriksson (Iceland), Lone Scherfig (Denmark), Kornel Mundruczo (Hungary), Goran Markovic, Goran Paskaljević, Radivoje Andric, Dusan Milic, Srđan Karanović and Srđan Dragojević (Serbia) and many others.
The festival is organized by Art Fest under the auspices of the Municipality of Sofia and in partnership with the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture, the National Palace of Culture, the National Film Center and the Bulgarian National Television with the support of the MEDIA programme of the European Commission, national and foreign cultural institutes and sponsors.
For its 10th anniversary as an international cinema event in the year 2010 named Year of Bulgarian Cinema, Sofia International Film Festival received as present the recognition from FIAPF (International Federation of Film Producers Associations) - it was accredited as competitive festival specialized in first and second films. Since its creation the director of the festival has been Stefan Kitanov.

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Gabrielle Brunnenmeyer: There is a young generation of film-makers in Bulgaria who has a lot to tell

Gabrielle BrunnenmeyerHaving worked as a journalist and film critic, Gabriele Brunnenmeyer was in charge of the MEDIA Antenna Berlin-Brandenburg, acting as an artistic adviser for MEDIA training initiative Moonstone International in regard to Eastern and Central Europe and organising workshops for directors and screenwriters in Germany. Her main activity in the last 10 years was the development of the East-West-Coproduction Market Connecting Cottbus at the Cottbus Film Festival which she was running as Artistic Director until the end of last year. Furthermore she is still working for the Kuratorium Junger Deutscher Film, a funding body for first and second films by German Young Talents, here she is acting as a project and dramatically advisor. She was a member of the jury for the International Competition for first and second films.  

Did you have initial understanding with the other members of the jury about your common criteria based on which you would evaluate the films?

We were very fine tuned as a jury. We had young directors in the jury – two of them with one movie behind them and one – with some more, and Fridrik and me being elder, and with my different experience in the East-West-Coproduction Market Connecting Cottbus. At the beginning we decided to just go with our feelings for the cinema, to be open to discover something new. We were not looking for something particular and what we had in common was that we all love the cinema. We had only one big discussion during which we talked about everything. Off course we talked to each other in the meantime, but we decided, and I personally believe in this, that you should wait until you see it all. Some of us would take notes after a screening for themselves. And in the end it was a very good session, everybody was completely in it.

You can read the whole interview on our festival's site www.siff.bg

 

14 March 2011

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About Sofia International Film Festival


International film festival for feature films, documentaries and shorts (mainly Bulgarian). Main themes: International competition for first and second films, Balkan & Bulgarian cinema, Cinema Europe, World screen, retrospectives.

Sofia

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