Sarajevo Film Festival
August 12th | 19th
Towards the end of the four-year siege of Sarajevo, in 1995, Obala Art Centar initiated the Sarajevo Film Festival with the aim of helping to reconstruct civil society and retain the cosmopolitan spirit of the city. Today, the Sarajevo Film Festival is the leading film festival in the region, recognized by both film professionals and the wider audience. The Sarajevo Film Festival is an international film festival with a special focus on the region of South-East Europe (Albania, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Georgia, Hungary, Kosovo*, Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Turkey), shining an international spotlight on films, talent and future projects from the region.
High quality programming, a strong industry segment, an educational and networking platform for young filmmakers and thus generated presence of the international film industry, film authors and media representatives alongside a paying audience of over 100,000, confirm its status as the leading film festival in the region, recognised by both professionals and the wider audiences.
In an emerging territory of more than 140 million inhabitants, Sarajevo Film Festival serves as a common platform for film businesses from all over the region, setting the future standards in festival organisation, film promotion and presentation in South-East Europe. Feel the creative energy of our Festival and share our passion for films in the remarkable atmosphere of the city of Sarajevo.
Sarajevo Film Festival is an international film festival with a focus on Regional cinema as stated below, as its specific aim lies in promoting and aiding the development of regional cinema and authors. Its goal is to act as the main meeting point where international and regional cinema converge in a spirit of cooperation and cultural exchange through the presentation of the finest and most recent achievements in world cinema. Sarajevo Film Festival dedicates its Competition Programme solely to regional film, showing regional, European, international and world premieres of films from Albania, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Kosovo*, Macedonia, Malta, Moldavia, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia and Turkey.
International Jury for Competition Programmes will be comprised of prominent representatives of: filmmakers, actors and actresses, producers, film festival programmers, representatives of culture.
Four international juries will be established, one for each competitive section – feature, short, documentary and student film.
The majority of members from each of the four juries will come from countries other than Festival host country. No Jury member will be assigned if previously had taken part in the making of any film in the competition programmes.
Film submission rules and regulations
The Board of Selectors chooses and invites films to be presented in Sarajevo Film Festival Competition Programme sections, as well as in several non-competitive Festival programmes.
Submission is open to films and drama series exclusively for the following programmes:
Competition Programme – Feature Film
Competition Programme – Documentary Film
Competition Programme – Short Film
Competition Programme – Student Film
Avant Premiere – specialized for regional drama series
Dealing with the past
BH Film Programme
Competition Programme – Feature Film – Documentary Film – Short Film
The Sarajevo Film Festival: Feature Film, Documentary film and Short Competition are a showcase for the presentation and promotion of films from Albania, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Kosovo*, Malta, Moldavia, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia and Turkey. Director of the film as well as the majority of authors must be from one of the above-mentioned countries as well as the production company of the film.
Unless otherwise specified, only those films that meet the following conditions may be considered for selection:
Fiction, documentary and animated films. Priority is reserved for films that will have their World, International, European or Regional premiere in the Competition Programme of Sarajevo Film Festival.
Films cannot be publicly presented in regional countries listed above, with eventual exception of one national premiere in the country of origin and one festival of animated film in the region in case of an animated film.
Films must have been produced in 12 months preceding the Festival Films that have neither been presented in television nor in the Internet / VOD without geoblocking. When films have been presented online with geo-blocking, our regular premiere status will apply. Films must not exceed 60 minutes in length including credits The producer of the selected film is obliged to provide the presence of the director of the film at the Festival. The film’s director must attend the Festival and present the film. The Festival will cover travel expenses and accommodation for seven nights for the director.
Director of the selected film present at the Festival is obliged to promote the film through participating at the official panels, and introduction prior to the film’s screening and interviews with selected Sarajevo Film Festival media partners.
27th Sarajevo Film Festival: Honorary Heart of Sarajevo Award and “Tribute to” Programme dedicated to Wim Wenders
The 27th Sarajevo Film Festival will pay tribute to director Wim Wenders and honour him in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the art of film. The acclaimed director will be presented with the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo Award and honoured with a retrospective of his selected works in the Festival’s “Tribute to” rogramme. “We are delighted to honour one of the central figures of modern cinema. With his work in the field of visual arts as an exceptional filmmaker and photographer, Wim Wenders continues to give the audience unforgettable stories and emotions”, said Festival Director Mirsad Purivatra. Wenders will hold a Masterclass, and the Festival will also organize a special screening of the newly restored version of his film THE MILLION DOLLAR HOTEL, winner of the Silver Bear award at the Berlin Film Festival (2000). Wenders will be returning to Sarajevo Film Festival ten years after his first visit: in 2011 he presented a revolutionary 3D film achievement PINA, feature-length documentary homage to a legendary choreographer Pina Bausch (1940 – 2009), nominated for an Oscar. The same year, at the 17th edition of the Sarajevo Film Festival (2011) Wenders gave lectures to participants of Talents Sarajevo, education programme organised by Sarajevo Film Festival in cooperation with Berlinale Talents and International Film Festival in Berlin.