Transilvania Pitch Stop 2018 delivers its awards
by Vassilis Economou
- The industry section of the 17th Transilvania International Film Festival continued its focus on both local and international projects, and has unveiled the winners of its fifth edition
The overhauled fifth Transilvania Pitch Stop (TPS) platform revealed its winners at the 17th Transilvania International Film Festival’s closing ceremony on 2 June in Cluj-Napoca’s National Theatre. For the second year in a row, the TPS was a hub that invited ten local and international projects to its co-production platform as well as five Romanian and Moldovan projects to its workshop.
The international jury, comprising Uldis Dimiševskis, deputy director of the National Film Centre of Latvia, Čedomir Kolar, producer at A.S.A.P. Films (France), and Nadia Turincev, producer at Rouge International (France), decided to give the awards to some of the projects that participated in the TPS pitching session that was held on 1 June in front of a buzzing audience of attending industry professionals.
Starting with the winners of the TPS co-production platform, the Serbian project Frost, directed by Pavle Vučković and produced by Stefan Mladenović (Plan 9), received the prestigious €20,000 Eurimages Co-production Development Award. Inspired by a myth from Eastern Serbia, where a dragon takes a human form to find love amongst mankind, the story follows a rational, tomboyish female police detective who visits a small town in the region to investigate the disappearance of a young girl.
The Post-production Services Award offered by Chainsaw Europe and worth €25,000 was handed to The Last Bus (Hungary), directed by debutant duo Nándor Lőrincz and Bálint Nagy, and produced by Gábor Kovács (FilmPartners Ltd) and Mónika Mécs (MM Films). Based on a real-life event, the film’s storyline adopts an unusual point of view, as it follows a sexual assault investigation as seen through the eyes of the victim’s husband. This will cause a series of disturbing and unexpected details to emerge.
Finally, the Romanian project To the North, directed by Mihai Mincan and produced by Radu Stancu (deFilm), won a five-day residency in Berlin, during the Berlinale, and a customised cultural programme intended to develop the script, offered by the Villa Kult Cultural Residency. Inspired by a real-life event that happened in the 1990s, the story focuses on a Romanian immigrant who illegally boards a container ship travelling to North America. With his life constantly in jeopardy, he must overcome the difficulties and a series of violent events.
The TPS workshop had two major winners. The project October by first-time director Cristian Pascariu, produced by Bogdan Crăciun (Libra Film Productions), will be invited to the next Connecting Cottbus to be presented at the East West Co-Production Market pitching session. In this bleak and absurd dramedy, one night an 18-year-old boy is asked to prevent his father’s best friend from committing suicide. It is a story about early maturity set in a tight-knit environment.
The €5,000 Romanian National Film Center Award was handed to Anatol Durbală’s sophomore project, Santa Barbara (Republic of Moldova), produced by Sergiu Cumatrenco Jr (Youbesc). Challenging the limits of religious belief, the film follows a simple man, a plumber, who is asked to install a heating system in a church, even though the work will cause damage to an icon. Even though he is not a believer himself, the hero will undergo a struggle and endure a series of comic events to discover right and wrong in a corrupt and sinful society.
Here is the complete list of winners of the fifth TPS:
Eurimages Co-production Development Award
Frost – Pavle Vučković (Serbia)
Post-production Services Offered by Chainsaw Europe
The Last Bus – Nándor Lőrincz and Bálint Nagy (Hungary)
Villa Kult Cultural Residency Award
To the North – Mihai Mincan (Romania)
Connecting Cottbus Award
October – Bogdan Crăciun (Romania)
Romanian National Film Center Award
Santa Barbara – Bogdan Crăciun (Republic of Moldova)
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