Transilvania Pitch Stop 2019 hands out its awards
by Ioana Florescu
- Dedicated to both local and international projects, the industry section of the 18th Transilvania International Film Festival has unveiled the winners of its sixth edition
The sixth edition of the Transilvania Pitch Stop (TPS) platform announced its winners at the 18th Transilvania International Film Festival’s closing ceremony on 8 June in Cluj-Napoca’s National Theatre. This year, the TPS invited 11 local and international projects to take part in its co-production platform, as well as four Romanian and Moldovan projects to partake in its workshop. The jury brought together Romanian producer Ada Solomon, advisor and former director of the Israel Film Fund Katriel Schory and Lithuanian filmmaker Audrius Stonys, who jointly decided which of the projects that participated in the TPS pitching session (held on 7 June in front of industry professionals) should be awarded.
Starting with the winners of the TPS co-production platform, the Hungarian project Democracy Work in Progress, directed by Mihály Schwechtje and produced by Genovéva Petrovits (of Studio P), received the prestigious €20,000 Eurimages Co-production Development Award. A black comedy about everyday corruption, Democracy Work in Progress centres on a driving examiner whose life is turned upside down when one of his examinees, a political activist called Júlia, refuses to pay him the usual bribery money for getting her driving licence.
“The jury appreciated the fact that this project emanates from a mundane situation but then develops into a much wider reflection on corruption, society and how even good ideological intentions can be misappropriated. Finally, the jury noted that the project has strong universal audience appeal, meaning that it could travel outside the co-producing countries,” read the jury’s motivation.
A Special Mention went to Athlete, the directorial debut by Semih Gulen and Mustafa Emin Buyukcoskun, which tells the story of a young female long jumper who decides to dope at the World Championships. Attached to the project are producers Oyku Kanli and Arda Ciltepe (Yumurta Yapim Sanat, Vigo Film).
The Post-production Services Award offered by Chainsaw Europe and worth €25,000 was handed to Between Two Stops (Turkey), directed by Selman Nacar and produced by Burak Çevik (Kuyu Film). Nacar’s sophomore feature tells the story of a man who is forced to make a difficult moral decision after an employee in his family business is severely injured on the job.
The €5,000 Romanian National Film Center Award was handed to Maksym Nakonechny’s Spas (Ukraine), a drama about a female soldier who, upon returning home from the front line after being held captive for two months, discovers that she is pregnant after being raped by her warden. Yelizaveta Smith (Tabor) is producing the film.
The TPS workshop saw two winners emerge victorious. Directed by Eva Pervolovici and produced by Libra Film, the Romanian project Océane 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. Océane tells the story of a young French woman who falls in love with a Romanian man and moves to Bucharest to join him without previously revealing her plan.
The project Carbon by Moldovan director Ion Borș, produced by Kantora Film Production and the Youbesc Creative Institute, will be invited to the next Connecting Cottbus to be presented during the East West Co-Production Market pitching session. Carbon tells the story of two Moldovan friends who, in 1992, during the armed conflict, find a carbonised corpse on the Nistru River.
Here is the complete list of winners at the sixth Transilvania Pitch Stop:
Eurimages Co-production Development Award
Democracy Work in Progress - Mihály Schwechtje (Hungary)
Athlete - Semih Gulen and Mustafa Emin Buyukcoskun (Turkey)
Post-production Services Offered by Chainsaw Europe
Between Two Dawns - Selman Nacar (Turkey)
Romanian National Film Center Award
Spas - Maksym Nakonechny (Ukraine)
Villa Kult Cultural Residency Award
Océane - Eva Pervolovici (Romania)
CoCo Connecting Cottbus Award
Carbon - Ion Borș (Moldova)
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