Slovak boxing drama Goat wins top Works in Progress award at Karlovy Vary
by Martin Kudláč
- Goat has gone home with the prize for the most promising project
Ivan Ostrochovský’s feature debut, Goat, has won the top Works in Progress prize at Karlovy Vary. The young Slovak filmmaker also co-directed the documentary Velvet Terrorists [+see also:
film profile] and acted as a co-producer from Sentimentalfilm on the acclaimed films Matchmaking Mayor by Erika Hníková and Made in Ash [+see also:
interview: Iveta Grófóva
interview: Jiří Konečný
film profile] by Iveta Grófová. This year’s Works in Progress initiative boasted 14 projects from Central and Eastern European filmmakers, of which three made it onto the shortlist (Goat was joined by the Czech-Polish co-production Journey to Rome and Russian title The Gulls).
Goat is currently in post-production and still requires some additional shooting and editing, though it is set to premiere in January 2015. The film is about real-life Roma boxer Peter Baláž, nicknamed “Goat”, and the story is inspired by his life. “With his girlfriend Miška, he is now living in poverty in a settlement on the outskirts of the town. Miška finds out that she is pregnant. While Goat wants a child of his own, she refuses outright to give birth because they are heavily in debt with no relief in sight. She intends to have an abortion and leaves Goat, moving in with her parents. Goat then decides to earn the money he needs in the ring.”
Granting the €10,000 award to Ostrochovský, the jury, consisting of artistic director Mihai Chirilov (Transilvania International Film Festival), Guillaume de Seille (Arizona Productions) and sales director Niloufar Siassi (Fortissimo Films), appreciated the “very strong characters, and a sad and funny visual style from a director able to incorporate lightweight touches into a heavyweight narrative with crystal-clear and convincing presentation”.
Goat is produced by Ostrochovský and Marek Urban’s company, Sentimentalfilm, and co-produced by Jiří Konečný from Endorfilm.