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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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Konstantin Bozhanov: “It is not necessary to take a ship to go to a non-existent village on the Danube”

Ave is
one of the most highly anticipated films of the year. The work keeps
the viewers in a natural suspense that is not a filmmaking trick but the
core of the story told – universal on one hand, but on the other hand,
somehow corresponding to the local reality (just before the start of the
shooting Konstanin Bozhanov was offered to rewrite the script and
moving the story to Seattle, but he refused because it didn’t seem
natural to him). A film with very dark and poorly lit spaces and with
two very colorful main characters. A film with a lot of quotes for
lovers (music fragments by Marc Ribot and featuring Bruno S. from The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser and Stroszek of Herzog). Film, which despite its big international awards, is going to be discussed long.

Let’s start from the suburbs – Avé
starts from the outskirts of Sofia and follows its specific path
through the “edge of this unexplained world”, if we quote the Irish poet
Desmond Egan...

The idea was to start from a town, from
an urban landscape, and gradually reach a pastoral picture, such as,
for example, suggests the river. Actually it is not necessary to take a
ship to go to a non-existent village on the Danube. It was important for
me though, characters to experience not only a spiritual and
intellectual development during the story, but also physically to move
in such an unpredictable trajectory.

So we have three
plans – the special geometry of physical movement, the inner, spiritual
movement, and a third layer – the words which not always co¬incide with
the so-called objective reality, and often they are in contrast with it.

Largely Avé is a film about the clash of young
people with the world of adults, about their first encounter with death
and a different kind of love. In a confrontation with the adult world,
the two characters have different protective mechanisms: while Avé is a
pathological liar and dreamer, Kamen is an introvert and shies away from
the world. And therefore, both characters are isolated, and words and
the selection of expressions in the communication with adults, are
protective mechanisms that keep them such as they are.

In
other words – a kind of history of Holden Caulfield and a more
melancholic Pippi Longstocking, narrated in contemporary language.

Holden
Caulfield is definitely one of the inspirations for the creation of
Kamen. Although he has an overlap as philosophy with myself, he is very
different from me and we can discover more features of Holden Caulfield,
than mine. And about Pippi Longstocking... yes, somehow Avé with her
fictitious stories is such precisely as a result and resistance to the
family, which is actually missing in her life.

Read the whole interview on Sofia International Film Festival's website

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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

Bulgaria



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