Twenty two participants with nine projects of feature films and three script consultant trainees have presented themselves within the Eastern Promises Industry Days of Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, which were held online July 6-9, 2020.
MIDPOINT Feature Launch 2020: Awards Winners
The projects were being developed during the previous 2 workshops of the program, visiting the Trieste FF and When East Meets West Co-production Forum in Italy in January 2020 and then continuing intensively online during the spring of 2020.
Within the workshops, the participants worked closely with a number of world-renounced tutors and group leaders, for example Anne Gensior, Pavel Jech and Ivo Trajkov.
The main focus was put on script and project development, at the same time also gaining deeper knowledge about other aspects of the industry.
The creative teams consisting of the writer, producer and director were joined by three script consultant trainees (Angeliki Vergou, Melissa Dhondt and Judit Olah) who collaborated closely with the projects and their mentor Gyula Gazdag.
The final days before the presentations were focused mainly on developing the pitching skills under the leadership of the pitching trainer Gabriele Brunnenmeyer.
Works in Development – Feature Launch within KVIFF Eastern Promises
Nine promising projects of feature films were pitched on Tuesday, July 7 during Works in Development – Feature Launch, a networking initiative and project showcase of MIDPOINT Institute and KVIFF.
They were accompanied the three attending script consultants who presented themselves as well.
Three awards altogether were given out to Feature Launch 2020 participants:
KVIFF & MIDPOINT Development Award
Special Mention: SARA'S BUNGALOW
The official statement of the selection jury (consisting of Danijel Hocevar (producer, MIDPOINT Feature Launch Head of Studies), Alessandra Pastore (Head of Industry of Meeting Point – Vilnius) and Joseph Fahim):
"First of all, we’d like to congratulate all participants for all their hard work and diligence. The quality and wide scope of the projects we received were pleasantly surprising for us, and we thoroughly enjoyed reading these future gems and having the pleasure to talk with all participating talents.
The decision to pick one winner out of this genuinely remarkable selection was all the more difficult, especially with so many worthy contenders. As a result, the jury decided to give a special mention to the Polish project “Sara’s Bungalow”; by director Julia Rogowska, writer Malgorzata Pilacinska and producer Krystyna Kantor. This dystopian sci-fi romance is the kind of smart, urgent genre picture we seldom see in the region, and we’re confident that the team in charge will deliver an exceptional film that will soon be the talk of the festival world.
The KVIFF & MIDPOINT Development Award Jury goes to an ambitious project of formal and thematic uniqueness; a comic philosophical meditation on destiny, choice, and the burden of being a human in an indifferent world. Brilliant in its conception and precise in its structuring, this highly ambitious project ventures into fresh waters rarely treaded in the increasingly obvious cinema of the present. The winner of the 2020 Works in Development – Feature Launch award goes to “Usud”; by writer/director Stefan Malesevic, and producer Andrijana Sofranic Sucur.
Congratulations to the winners and participants."
This joint financial award of the Karlovy Vary IFF and MIDPOINT is aimed to support emerging talents mainly from Central and Eastern Europe and help to further develop their feature film project.
connecting cottbus Award
The graduate project VACUUM, presented by the writer/director Yelizaveta Smith and producer Aleksandra Kostina / Bosonfilm, was granted the opportunity to attend the connecting cottbus co-production market in November 2020.
"Out of an again incredibly strong selection at MIDPOINT Feature Launch, we decided to invite VACUUM from Ukraine to present their project at connecting cottbus in November, acknowledging its international potential. Underlined by a visual concept both haunting and reflective, VACUUM suggests we can discover a missing person’s identity in the empty spaces they left behind – what better medium to pursue this in than cinema", stated Marjorie Bendeck and Katharina Stumm from connecting cottbus.
Rotterdam Lab Scholarship Award
Andrijana Sofranic Sucur, the producer of the project Usud, was chosen to participate in the professional training program for producers, Rotterdam Lab, which will take place within International Film Festival Rotterdam in January 2021.
Alessia Acone and Mirjam Klootwijk from Rotterdam Lab commented upon their decision in following words:
"Despite the challenges that all these talented professionals are currently dealing with, the presentations of all the projects were very inspiring and our one-on-one meetings truly engaging.
Andrijana, as a strong emerging talent, is the selected producer for the next edition of Rotterdam Lab 2021. She impressed us with her personal drive towards the project, her engagement to an upcoming creative team, and her strong desire to extend her international network."
To follow up on Feature Launch as a year-long program, its partner, the co-production market When East Meets West, invites all the participating producers to Trieste, Italy in January 2021, offering them one more chance to meet with their potential artistic and financing partners during the Feature Launch Spotlight.