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Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival has announced the first 8 films of the Official Selection

The first 8 films of the Official Selection

Six of the announced films are world premieres, as Black Nights welcomes the return of Latvian auteur Laila Pakalnina with In the Mirror; the celebrated Kazakhstan director Adilkhan Yerzhanov with Ulbolsyn; the multiple-award-winning Croatian director Dalibor Matanić with The Dawn; veteran Russian scriptwriter and director Aleksandr Mindadze with Parquet; the up and coming Turkish director Nisan Dağ presenting her second feature When I’m Done Dying and the Portuguese film and TV director Leonardo António with Submission.

Academy-Award-winning Hungarian veteran István Szabó's new film Final Report will have its international premiere at Black Nights.

The first batch is rounded off by The Three by the Sundance Best-Director-award-winning Russian director Anna Melikyan.



Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival is moving on with preparations of a hybrid event, holding physical screenings, while the accredited foreign press and industry delegates access to the festival’s programme digitally via the Shift72 and Elisa Stage platforms, no matter their geographic location. The industry strand, Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event has moved fully online this year, using the Elisa Stage platform.

Travel of foreign filmmakers and the press will be decided upon according to the situation in early November. The festival has teamed up with medical companies SYNLAB and Medicum for building safety protocols for testing kits and masks.



After receiving some raving reviews in the First Feature Competition of Black Nights last year our alumn, Lithuanian film Isaac by Jurģis Matulevičius is again making waves as the film has been nominated in the European Discovery category of the European Film Awards. The winners will be awarded at a ceremony on 12 December 2020. The team of PÖFF will keep their fingers crossed!

Stephen Dalton (The Hollywood Reporter) called the film 'A strikingly accomplished debut feature from the young Lithuanian writer-director Jurgis Matulevicius, Isaac draws on Cold War thriller and film noir tropes to create an ambitiously novelistic Euro-drama in which personal treachery resonates across a broader historical canvas'.


Screen International has unveiled Stars of Tomorrow 2020, its annual, eagerly anticipated talent showcase of the most exciting new actors, writers, directors, producers, and heads of department emerging across the UK and Ireland.

Among them we find Dónall Ó Héalai, who played the protagonist of Irish-language drama Arracht which had its world premiere at the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival last year. Performing the role of a husband, father and farmer in 1840s Ireland — during the period of the great potato famine — required him to shed four stones in weight over four hungry months prior to the shoot. The film’s rapturous reception at festivals including Tallinn Black Nights and Dublin (where he won a discovery award) is earning the actor a new kind of attention.


We are delighted our last year's First Feature Competition entry, Lorni – The Flaneur directed by Wanphrang K Diengdoh will reach more audiences. Singapore’s 108 Media has picked up international sales duties on the Indian drama film ahead of its Toronto market debut.

Another piece of fantastic news from India, as MUBI buys world rights for Knock Knock Knock, a medium-length feature by Sudhanshu Saria that we screened at #PÖFF23. Sudhanshu is a true PÖFF alumnus as his first feature Loev had its world premiere at Black Nights 2015 and he returned the next year in the jury of the First Feature Competition.


"This is an anti-animal movie", directors Elsa Kremser and Levin Peter told Leonardo Goi as they spoke about Space Dogs at the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival, where the documentary screened a few months after its Locarno world premiere.

This is not a documentary that seeks to humanize its four-legged protagonists, but one whose overarching goal is to usher us into a world seen entirely through their own point of view. Kremser and Peter spent six months walking around the outskirts of Moscow with their two leads, and the feeling of intimacy percolates through the film.


Estonian funk band Lexsoul Dancemachine released a video directed by Ugandan director Godfrey Geoffrey aka Nabwana I.G.G, who they discovered thanks to PÖFF side festival the Haapsalu Horror and Fantasy Film Festival.

The video was shot in the backyard of I.G.G.'s home in the slum of Ugandan capital Kampala. The director is the founder of Wakaliwood and has been called Uganda's Tarantino. During the past 15 years he’s made over 50 films together with his friends and other slum residents, playing a central part in the local industry that has gained the popularity of being „so bad that it’s good“.



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About Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival

Started in 1997, the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival has grown into one of the biggest film festivals in Northern Europe and busiest regional industry platforms, hosting more than 1000 guests and industry delegates and over 160 journalists. The festival screens around 250 features and more than 300 shorts and animations and sees an attendance of 80 000 people annually. In 2017 the festival was covered in 71 languages with a potential global media audience of over 1.1 billion people.

As of 2014 the festival holds the FIAPF accreditation for holding an international competition programme which puts the festival into the so- called A-category of film festivals, alongside other 14 festivals in the world (including Cannes, Berlinale, Venice, Karlovy Vary, San Sebastian, Shanghai, Tokyo etc).  

Black Nights has an umbrella structure with two sub-festivals PÖFF Shorts and youth and children's film festival Just Film taking place concurrently with the main festival,
two off-season festivals - Haapsalu Horror and Fantasy Film Festival and Tartu Love Film Festival - and a fully-fledged film industry platform Industry@Tallinn, organised jointly with the Baltic Event Co-production market.

Black Nights Film Festival 16 Nov - 2 Dec
PÖFF Shorts 20 Nov - 25 Nov
Just Film 16 Nov - 2 Dec
Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event 26 Nov - 30 Nov



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