Seven projects pitched at the Arras Days
by Fabien Lemercier
- Filmmakers chosen for the section include Bulgarian directors Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov, Czech filmmaker Petr Vaclav, and Latvian Renars Vimba
As part of the 17th Arras Film Festival, which is currently in full swing (see news item and article), the 5th edition of the Arras Days will showcase seven projects currently being written, which will be pitched on Saturday to a jury of three European professionals (French producer Charlotte Vincent, her Swedish counterpart Freddy Olsson, and journalist Bruno Icher, who is also on the selection committee for Directors’ Fortnight) and will be battling it out for two prizes (€8,000 from the CNC and €5,000 from the town of Arras).
Among the projects in the running are The Father by Bulgarian duo Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov. Highly acclaimed for The Lesson [+see also:
interview: Kristina Grozeva, Petar Val…
interview: Margita Gosheva
film profile] (unveiled at Toronto and winner of the New Directors section at San Sebastián in 2014) and Glory [+see also:
interview: Petar Valchanov
interview: Petar Valchanov, Kristina G…
film profile] (received positively this year in competition at Locarno), the two filmmakers this time decided to explore the multiple layers of communication problems and the vicious cycles that follow.
Czech filmmaker Petr Vaclav, who most notably directed The Way Out [+see also:
interview: Petr Václav
film profile] (unveiled in the alternative ACID section of Cannes in 2014) and We Are Never Alone [+see also:
interview: Petr Vaclav
film profile] (premiered this year in the Forum section of the Berlinale), will also be at Arras, where he’ll be pitching his project Il Boemo, the screenplay for which follows the misfortunes in Venice in 1765 of an ambitious Czech musician who tries to make it big whilst lifting himself out of poverty.
After rising to fame with Mellow Mud [+see also:
interview: Elina Vaska
interview: Renars Vimba
film profile] (which won the award for Best Film in the Generation 14plus section of this year’s Berlin Film Festival), Latvian director Renars Vimba will present the project for his second feature, Sanctus, the screenplay for which revolves around a group that seeks refuge on an isolated farm when an incurable virus wreaks havoc all over the world.
Goran Radovanovic, whose latest fictional opus, Enclave [+see also:
film profile], is representing Serbia in the battle for next year’s Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, will present a documentary project, D.M. (Dusan Makavejev): Mysteries of Freedom, which revisits the forced exile of Yugoslavian filmmaker Dusan Makavejev, banished by the communists in 1971 after the premiere of WR: Mysteries of the Organism.
Acclaimed for his debut feature, Anna's Life [+see also:
interview: Nino Basilia
film profile] (which most notably took home this year’s main award at the Cinema Jove Festival in Valencia), Georgian director Nino Basilia will be pitching Child, which brings together a pregnant teenager and a woman looking to adopt, against the backdrop of the war between Abkhazia and Georgia.
Two Croatian projects will also be presented at Arras. With What A Country!, seasoned filmmaker Vinko Bresan, who made his big international breakthrough with his previous film The Priest’s Children [+see also:
interview: Vinko Bresan
film profile], throws himself into black comedy bordering on the absurd (see interview with producer Maja Vikic for Interfilm). Then the duo made up of Swedish director Cecilia Björk and Croatian filmmaker Marjan Alcevski will be presenting their debut feature project, The Combover, a satire centered around a man who is ridiculed by his fellow citizens when he runs for the post of mayor of a small town.
Also seen as a co-production and funding platform, the Arras Days will also allow producers, distributors and sellers interested in these projects to get to know them a little better.
(Translated from French)
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