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Karlovy Vary 2021: The Staffroom in main competition, The Dawn in Horizons, After the Winter in East of the West, All Dogs Die in Future Frames selection

Sonja Tarkoić’s debut fiction feature The Staffroom, produced by Ankica Jurić Tilić of Kinorama, will have its world premiere in the main competition, the Crystal Globe. Director Dalibor Matanić’s The Dawn, produced by the same producer and production company, will screen in the Horizons programme, while minority Croatian co-production After the Winter, which is a debut fiction feature directed by Ivan Bakrač, with Croatian co-producer Damir Terešak (of Maxima Film), has been selected to screen in the competition programme East of the West. On the other hand, Icelandic-Croatian fiction short All Dogs Die, with Croatian co-producer Matej Merlić (of Castor Multimedia), will screen in the European Film Promotion section – Future Frames. The 55th edition of the festival in the west of Czechia will take place live, 20th – 28th August. 

The world premiere of The Staff Room is scheduled for Sunday, 22nd August at 5 p.m. It is a story about a young and enthusiastic school counsellor who, confronted with the limitations of the school system and surrounded by other disheartened teachers, begins her own fight against a problematic history teacher, unaware that in so doing, she gradually becomes more and more like her staffroom colleagues.

Apart from directing the film, Sonja Tarokić also wrote the screenplay. The film is produced by Ankica Jurić Tilić, director of photography is Danko Vučinović, while Borna Buljević edited the film. Production design was done by Tajana Čanić Stanković, Katarina Pilić is credited with costume design, while Sanja Hrstić Kuterovac created the make-up. The film’s cast is headed up by Marina Redžepović, Stojan Matavulj, Nives Ivanković, Maja Posavec, Sandra Lončarić, Daria Lorenci Flatz and many others. 

The film is a Kinorama production, with KinoElektron from France as associate producer, while the film received support from the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, the MEDIA sub-programme of the Creative Europe, RE-ACT fund, Croatian Radiotelevision and TFL. 

The Dawn is scheduled to appear in the Horizons section – dedicated to the most significant titles of the past year – on 21st August. Dalibor Matanić’s feature is the second instalment in his ‘The Sun Trilogy’, comprising The High Sun, The Dawn and Sunset. In The Dawn Matanić continues to juxtapose the most noble and the basest of human impulses. Starring in the film is Krešimir Mikić as Matija, while his wife Ika is played by Tihana Lazović

The film is a Kinorama, Ascent Film and RAI Cinema production, with Ankica Jurić Tilić as producer and Andrea Paris, Matteo Rovere and Ines Vasiljević acting as co-producers. Director of photography is Marko Brdar, Tomislav Pavlic is credited with editing, while the music was composed by Alen Sinkauz and Nenad Sinkauz

The film was created with the support of the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, Mibact, RAI Cinema, Eurimages, Croatian Radiotelevision, the Friuli Venezia Giulia Film Commission and Regione Lazio.   

On 26th August, the East of the West competition programme will showcase minority Croatian co-production After the Winter – a debut fiction feature directed by Ivan Bakrač, with Croatian co-producer Damir Terešak (Maxima Film). The Montenegro-Serbian-Croatian co-production is a nostalgic and humorous homage to friendship and youth, which also received support from the Croatian Audiovisual Centre.

Icelandic-Croatian fiction short All Dogs Die directed by Ninna Pálmadóttir has been included in the EFP programme – Future Frames. It is a story about aging farmer Gunnar and his estranged granddaughter Anna who struggle to communicate as they try to decide what to do with the family dog whose health is failing. Over a summer weekend they face secrets from the past and issues of mortality.    

The film is as Streetlight Raven (Iceland) and Castor Multimedia (Croatia) production, with producers Ninna Pálmadóttir, Shao Min Chew Chia and Oddur Elíasson, and Matej Merlić as co-producer. Editing was done by Ivor Šonje, with Ninna Pálmadóttir and Jason Brownrigg as directors of photography and Tihomir Vrbanec as sound designer. 

All Dogs Die is screening alongside nine other short titles directed by some of the most promising European film students and directing graduates. All Dogs Die is on the programme on 23rd August, while the entire list of films in the selection is available on this link.  

The Karlovy Vary International Film Festival is one of the longest-running and most prestigious European film festivals annually screening around 200 cinematic titles. This year’s edition will be held on-site, 20th – 28th August. The Crystal Globe for Outstanding Artistic Contribution to World Cinema will be awarded to British actor and two-time Oscar winner Sir Michael Cane, honoured with the recognition during the gala opening ceremony. The announced guest list includes American actor Johnny Depp, Ethan Hawke and many others on the red carpet.

More information about the festival may be found on the Karlovy Vary IFF official website

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