Croatian films and projects at 31st Trieste Film Festival  

Three Croatian titles to screen in different sections of the Trieste Film Festival, held from 17th to 23rd Jan of 2020. One of these films, Silva Ćapin’s short, called German Spite, will have its world premiere in the TFF official competition. In addition, two Croatian projects will be presented in different sections of the upcoming TFF industry segment, When East Meets West.   

The short fiction film, directed and written by Silva Ćapin, The Rudeness of a German Lady, has been selected to screen in the international short film competition of the 31st TFF. The screening, which takes place on Saturday, 18th Jan, is also the film’s world premiere. The film follows a group of tourists on a hot summer day at the beach in Dalmatia. One of them, a German woman named Erika, has the best spot under the parasol, however, the other bathers become suspicious of how stubbornly still she is lying. As the day progresses, they realize she is in fact dead, but doubt whether to move her because they do not want to spoil a perfect day at the beach.  

The Rudeness of a German Lady was produced by Rea Rajčić (Eclectica) and co-produced by the Hungarian company, the Speak Easy Project. The film was co-financed by the Croatian Audiovisual Centre. In development phase, it won the award for best project at the European Short Pitch, held by the European association for the promotion of young professionals in the European filmmaking industry, NISI MASA 2018. In addition, the project was awarded at the 2017 pitching forum, held as part of the ‘Film Project International Market Preparation and Presentation Workshop’ of the Mediterranean Film Festival Split.      

In addition to The Rudeness of a German Lady, Predrag Ličina’s Last Serb in Croatia will screen in Trieste on 18th Jan at midnight. In Croatia, the film was seen by 28,072 moviegoers, which makes it the fourth most-watched domestic film of 2019. 

Another film to screen at TFF is Tusta, a documentary by Andrej Korovljev. The film will screen in the Art & Sound programme, dedicated to works that are ‘somewhere between film and contemporary works of art’. 

A section of the festival dedicated to animated films for children features the programme entitled Professor Balthazar and Friends, created in collaboration with Zagreb Film and the World Festival of Animated Film – Animafest Zagreb. 

The programme presents some of the European cinematic gems from the past decade, as well as films that are part of Croatia’s animation heritage – heart-warming stories that celebrate imagination, curiosity, wit and courage. The Croatian titles to screen in the programme are Knock Knock by Ivana Guljašević, Nutz by Denis Alenti and seven episodes of Professor Balthazar

The 31st edition of Trieste Film Festival will be inaugurated with the screening of Terrence Malick’s latest film, A Hidden Life. Find out more about the festival at the official website

Two Croatian projects in 2020 When East Meets West programmes  

Trieste Film Festival also includes the industry section entitled When East Meets West 2020, which takes place 19th – 21st January. Out of 338 applications from 55 countries, 22 projects have been selected to participate in the co-production forum. 

One of the selected projects is Sandbag Dam, directed by Čejen Černić. Tomislav Zajec co-wrote the script, while the film’s producer is Ankica Jurić Tilić (Kinorama). The Croatian Audiovisual Centre and the Slate Funding section of the MEDIA Sub-programme of Creative Europe in part finance the project development. It is a story about the forbidden love between two young men in a small town on the river Odra in rural Croatia.   

In addition to the co-production forum, this year for the first time When East Meets West includes a workshop entitled First Cut + within the First Cut Lab. The section will feature another project produced by Ankica Jurić Tilić (Kinorama) – The Staffroom. It is a feature fiction film written and directed by Sonja Tarokić, about a primary school adviser Anamarija, who, faced with pressure from staffroom’s power groups, must adjust in order to prevail. The project development is supported by the MEDIA Sub-programme of Creative Europe and the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, which also supports the production of the film. The film stars Marina Redžepović, who previously appeared in Sonja Tarokić’s short films such as Red, You Bitch! and I'm a Self-Made Woman.    
The film will also screen at a workshop session called ‘Work in Progress,’ on Sunday, 19th Jan. First Cut + presents 15 feature films in post-production phase from low production capacity countries, with an emphasis on Central and Eastern Europe. 

The WEMW industry programme brings together more than 500 film professionals from over 40 countries, centring on countries or regions in the spotlight. This year the programme will highlight Hungary, Moldova, Romania, Austria, Germany and Switzerland. The programme consists of a pitching forum for projects in development, as well as a series of meetings, panel discussions and lectures, while the selected projects compete for several money prizes. The main aim is to offer the participants a more detailed insight into the film industries of the countries in the spotlight and assist them in finding the best partners for their projects.   

Cover photos: Trieste Film Festival visual; scenes from The Rudeness of a German Lady, Last Serb in Croatia, Tusta, The Staffroom

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