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Croatian films awarded at Trieste Film Festival  

Ivan Ramljak’s feature debut Once Upon A Youth wins the OBC Transeuropa Award for best documentary, while Croatian minority co-production Father, directed by Srdan Golubović receives the Audience Award and the CEI (Central European Initiative) Award. In addition, the Croatian project directed by Srđan Keča, Museum of the Revolution, receives an award in the Last Stop Trieste industry section.  

“Director Ivan Ramljak’s film reduces the narrative to primary elements, allowing the viewer to connect more intimately to its protagonist and the artwork he left behind. By transforming the shots into a collective confessional, Ramljak reconstructs a time marked by creativity, liberation, hedonism and youthful destruction in the milieu of the eccentric cultural scene of post-war Croatia,” said the statement of the Osservatorio Balcani Caucaso Transeuropa Award, bestowed on Ramljak for his film Once Upon A Youth.      

The film is a story about the author’s deceased friend Marko Čaklović and their growing up together. The documentary premiered at DokuFest, the International Documentary and Short Film Festival held in Prizren, Kosovo, where it was awarded Best Balkan Documentary, and had its Croatian premiere at the 29th Croatian Film Days. In December of last year, it also received the Jury Grand Prize at the Poitiers Film Festival.    

The film was written and directed by Ivan Ramljak, Marko Čaklović created the cinematography, Ivor Šonje edited the film, Borna Buljević created the sound design, while the film was produced by Matej Merlić.

The 32 Trieste Film Festival also awarded Srdan Golubić’s fiction feature Father, a co-production between Serbia, France, Germany, Croatia, Slovenia and B&H, whose Croatian producers are Lana Matić and Boris T. Matić of Propeler Film. The film received the Audience Award and the CEI - Central European Initiative Award for the film that “best interprets the contemporary world and the dialogue between different cultures.”

Father is based on a true story of an unemployed worker who, distraught after social services take away his children, leaves his native village in the south of Serbia and travels on foot to Belgrade in the hope of presenting his case to the Minister himself. For his appearance in the title role, Goran Bogdan was also nominated for the 2020 European Film Award for Best Actor.

Father premiered in the Panorama section at last year’s Berlinale, taking home two awards (Audience Award and Ecumenical Jury Prize). At Pula Film Festival it received the Golden Gate of Pula Audience Award as the film to receive the highest ever audience rating of 5.0.

In addition, the documentary feature, Museum of the Revolution directed, written and shot by Srđan Keča and edited by Hrvoslava Brkušić, presented in the industry programme Last Stop Trieste, won the Flow Digital Cinema Award. The project’s producers are Vanja Jambrović (Restart, Croatia) and Srđan Keča (Uzrok, Serbia), with Lukás Kokes and Pavla Janoušková Kubečková (Nutprodukce, the Czech Republic) as co-producers.  

Last Stop Trieste is a sub-programme of the industry section When East Meets West, intended for nearly completed, or fine-cut stage projects. The list of all award-winning projects that participated in the industry section of the festival is available on here

The Trieste Film festival was held online, 21st–30th Jan, while more information about the festival is available on its official website

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