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Two Croatian films competing at the International Film Festival for Children and Youth in Zlín

The feature film My grandpa is an Alien, directed by Dražen Žarković and Marina Andree Škop and the animated short film The Ballad of Pipe and Necklace, directed by Martin Babić have been included in the competition program of the 59th International Film Festival for Children and Youth in Zlín. The festival is being held from 24 May until 1 June.  

The children’s science fiction feature film My Grandpa’s an Alien was produced by Darija Kulenović Gudan and Marina Andree Škop from the Studio dim from Zagreb with partners from another 6 European countries: HRT – Hrvatska radiotelevizija, the Luxembourg Wady Films, the Norwegian Filmbin, the Czech MasterFilm and MagicLab, the Slovak Artileria, the Slovenian Senca Studio and the Bosnia and Hercegovina’s Fabrika, while support was also provided by the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, the Program MEDIA of the European Union, the Luxembourg Film Fund, the Norwegian Film Institute, Filminvest3, the Czech Film Fund, the Slovak Audiovisual Fund, the Slovenian Film Centre, Viba Film and the Foundation for Cinematography Sarajevo. 

My grandpa is an Alien entered regular cinema distribution in March this year. It experienced its festival premiere at the International Film Festival for Children KinoKino, after which it immediately 'departed' for its international premiere in Montreal, at the children’s film festival FIFEM 2019. The film will also be screened in July at the 66th Pula Film Festival.   

The science fiction film follows the adventures of a little girl Una and robot Dodo who have less than 24 hours to save her partially alien family. It draws its origins from the motifs of the story 'My grandpa is an Alien' by Irene Krčelić. The screenplay was written by Pavlica Bajsić and Branko Ružić.    

The animated short film The Ballad of Pipe and Necklace, directed by Martin Babić, screenwriter Siniša Bahun and producer Jure Bušić is a witty interpretation of Slavic legends in stop motion animation, originating in the production company Jaka productions. It tells the story of a young Slovenian man in the Stone Age who invents the first flute, while a Croatian girl invents the first necklace in the world. The young couple meet and fall in love, however their tribes engage in an open conflict.    

The film was created with the support of the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, the City of Rijeka, the Krapina Zagorje County and the City of Zagreb. The film had its premiere at the International Festival of Animated Film Animateka 2018, after which it was screened at many national and foreign film festivals, such as the International Children’s Film Festival in Seoul, KingstOOn in Jamaica, the South East European Film Festival in Los Angeles SEEfest and many others. 

Aside from the abovementioned films, the film The Mystery of Green Hill, directed by Čejen Černić will also be screened at the festival in Zlín, during the showcase program earmarked for notable achievements in film from Balkan countries. The screenplay was written by Hana Jušić, and produced by Ankica Jurić Tilić and Hrvoje Pervan (Kinorama). As part of the same program, visitors will also be able to watch The Lone Wolf, directed by Obrad Gluščević from 1972.

About 300 films from fifty countries throughout the world are shown at the International Film Festival for Children and Youth in Zlin. Since 2010, the festival has been frequented by more than 95,000 people. All other details about the festival itself and program can be found on their official website.

Cover photograph: a scene from the film My grandpa is an Alien; The Ballad of Pipe and Necklace

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