20th Sarajevo kicks off
by Vladan Petkovic
- The Sarajevo Film Festival (August 15-23) started its jubilee 20th edition with three screenings and honorary awards for Gael Garcia Bernal and Agnes B.
The Sarajevo Film Festival's main Open Air venue was filled with 3,000 people who came to see the official opening on Friday night, which consisted of presenting Honorary Heart of Sarajevo awards to Mexican actor and director Gael Garcia Bernal, followed by a special screening of Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Amores Perros, in which Bernal had his breakthrough role.
Presenting the award to the actor, festival director Mirsad Purivatra said: “We admire you as an actor, a film director and a person who is trying to change the world. It is an honour to welcome you to Sarajevo and to celebrate our anniversary together. Part of Sarajevo belongs to you. Esta es tu casa.”
After a huge round of applause, Bernal replied: It is very strange to be here because we are going to show Amores Perros, a film that was made when I was 19, which is 16 years ago. And it became this film that has been seen around the world. When we were making this film we never expected to show this film here, 16 years after with all you beautiful people. Hvala vam puno.”
The second opening ceremony took place at the festival's main competition venue, the National Theatre, where Purivatra handed the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo to French designer, producer and filmmaker Agnes B. Her debut feature film My Name is Hmmm... [+see also:
film profile] will be screened out of competition on Saturday.
The event was followed by a gala screening of omnibus film Bridges of Sarajevo [+see also:
film profile], made for the occasion of commemoration of the beginning of the First World War, and world-premiered out of competition in Cannes.
The third opening film, part of the non-competitive, high-quality arthouse programme Kinoscope, Benedikt Erlingsson’s Of Horses and Men [+see also:
interview: Benedikt Erlingsson
film profile] was screened at the Meeting Point cinema.