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BELGRADE FEST 2019 FEST Forward

FEST Forward awards go to projects from Armenia and Serbia

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- Aurora's Sunrise by Inna Sahakyan has won in the Women in Film segment, while Celts by Milica Tomović picked up the National Selection Award in Belgrade FEST's industry section

FEST Forward awards go to projects from Armenia and Serbia
Director Inna Sahakyan, who won the Women in Film Award with Aurora's Sunrise

The Belgrade International Film Festival FEST's industry section, FEST Forward, which took place from 28 February-2 March, has announced its award winners.

In the Women in Film section, co-organised by Film Center Serbia and EWA, the €4,000 award went to the Armenian project Aurora's Sunrise by Inna Sahakyan, best known for the 2010 documentary The Last Tightrope Dancer in Armenia. Her new project is an animated documentary that deals with the Armenian genocide through a story about Aurora Mardiganian, who managed to survive the massacre, only to be sold into sexual slavery. After escaping her Ottoman captors in 1917, she reached the United States and became a central figure in the American relief campaign for Christian minorities in the Ottoman Empire, and even starred in various Hollywood films. The project is being produced by Yerevan-based Bars Media Documentary Film Studio.

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The selection included a total of six projects – for the full list, scroll down.

In the National Selection for Serbian projects, the €4,000 prize went to Celts by Milica Tomović, best known as the 2016 winner of the Heart of Sarajevo for Best Short Film, for Transition. Already presented at events such as CineLink and the Balkan Film Market, the project is a family drama with comedy elements set in Belgrade in 1993, when wars were raging in Croatia and Bosnia, and Serbia was under UN embargo. The main character is a 38-year-old mother who organises a birthday party for her eight-year-old daughter, where her family and various guests will make her feel invisible. The film is being produced by Belgrade-based EED Productions.

A Special Mention went to the hybrid documentary Christina, written by Milanka Gvoić and directed by Nikola Spasić, about a transgender woman who goes from rags to riches but gets arrested for illegal sex work.

Here is the full list of winners:

Women in Film Award
Aurora's Sunrise - Inna Sahakyan (Armenia/Germany)
Production company: Bars Media Documentary Film Studio

National Selection Award
Celts - Milica Tomović
Production company: EED Productions 

Special Mention
Christina - Nikola Spasić
Production company: REZON

Here is the full list of Women in Film projects: 

Aurora’s Sunrise  Inna Sahakyan (Armenia/Germany)
Production company: Bars Media Documentary Film Studio 

Dirty Girls - Olga Malea (Greece)
Production company: View Master Films

How is Katia? - Christina Tynkevych (Ukraine)
Production company: Toy Cinema

Melissa’s Story - Asia Dér and Sara Haragonics (Hungary)
Production company: Campfilm

Snow and the Bear - Selcen Ergun (Turkey)
Production company: Nefes Films 

The Myth of a Real Man - Milica Lee Filipovski (Serbia)
Production company: Dart Film & Video 

Here is the full list of National Selection projects: 

Blame on Me - Ivan Stojiljković
Production company: Sense Production 

Celts - Milica Tomović
Production company: EED Productions 

Christina - Nikola Spasić
Production company: REZON 

A Man Sings After War - Ana Otašević
Production company: DarMar Films

Roots Tea Lukač
Production company: NANA 143 

The Users - Ivan Ikić 
Production company: Sense Production

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