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Two Croatian Films in 67th Locarno Programme

The programme of the 67th Locarno Film Festival, taking place 6-16 August, includes two Croatian films – the minority co-production Cure – The Life of Another by Andrea Štaka in the international competition, and the majority co-production Island of Love by Jasmila Žbanić in the Piazza Grande non-competition programme. These will also be both films’ world premieres.

The action of Cure – The Life of Another takes place in Dubrovnik in the 1990s, and revolves around two 14-year-old girls one of which dies after an argument. The main roles are played by Lucia Radulović and Sylvie Marinković, and the rest of the cast includes Mirjana Karanović, Marija Škaričić, Leon Lučev, Perica Martinović, Edi Jertec, Franjo Dijak etc. The film written by Andrea Štaka, Marie Kreutzer and Thomas Imbach, with cinematography by Martin Gschlacht and editing by Tom La Belle.

Cure is the first film this award-winning Swiss-Croatian director has made in Croatia. Her first large international success came precisely in Locarno when her feature narrative debut in 2006 Das Fraulein won the main festival award, the Golden Leopard.

The film is co-produced by Switzerland (Okofilm Productions), Croatia (Živa Produkcija) and Bosnia and Herzegovina (Deblokada Film), and it won the support of the Swiss Federal Ministry of Culture, Zurich Film Foundation, SF television, ZDF/Arte, Bosnia and Herzegovina Foundation for Cinema, Eurimages, and the Croatian Audiovisual Centre.

Love Island is screened in the Piazza Grande non-competition programme, taking place in the namesake square in the centre of Locarno, in the company of films by acclaimed directors like Lucy by Luc Besson, The Hundred-Foot Journey by Lasse Hallström and Sils Maria by Olivier Assayas.

Love Island is the first Croatian film by the Bosnian and Herzegovinian director Jasmila Žbanić, the winner of Berlin’s Golden Bear 2006 for Grbavica. Based on the script co-written with Aleksandar Hemon, the film revolves around the Grebo family and their holiday in Istria. The protagonist, a Frenchwoman living in Sarajevo, is pregnant and goes on vacation with her Bosnian husband on St. Nicholas island, but their young marriage will be put on stake by the charismatic Flora.the film stars Ariane Labed, Ada Condeescu, Ermin Bravo, Franco Nero, Leon Lučev, Bojana Gregorić, Jelena Lopatić, Branka Petrić Fehmiu, Lee Delong, and it was produced by Damir Ibrahimović and Leon Lučev. The cinematographer was Christine A. Meier and editor Isabel Meier. The film was co-produced by Croatia (Produkcija Živa), Germany (Komplizen film), Switzerland (Okofilm Production) and Bosnia and Herzegovina (Deblokada), and was granted support from the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, Swiss and German state funds, Eurimages and MEDIA Programmes.

The best international competition film will be decided by director Gianfranco Rosi, last year’s Venice Golden Lion winner for Sacro GRA, German director Thomas Arslan (Dealer, 1999; Gold, 2013), Brazilian actress Alice Braga (City of God, 2002; Elysium, 2013), Danish actess Connie Nielsen (Gladiator, 2000; Nymphomaniac, 2013), and Chinese director Diao Yinan (Golden Bear winner at Berlinalel 2014 for Black Coal, Thin Ice ).

The Locarno Film festival is one of the longest and most important European festivals, known for its revelations of up and coming talents and trends. More information about the entire programme and other films is available on the official festival website.

Still images from the film Cure – The Life of Another can be downloaded here, and from Love Island on this link.

Title photos: Cure – The Life of Another; Love Island

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