The program of the 17th International Documentary Film Festival Beldocs has been presented

Festival - 22.04.2024.

The program of the International Documentary Film Festival Beldocs, which will be held for the 17th time in Belgrade, as well as in other cities in Serbia from May 22nd to May 29th, was presented today at the Balkan Cinema.

Festival director, Mara Prohaska Marković, artistic director of the festival, Marko Grba Singh, and Beldocs selector, Igor Stanojević, were speaking on behalf of the Beldocs festival, announcing a rich film lineup and accompanying program, as well as numerous innovations for this year’s edition of the festival.

The film program will consist of 103 films, including 13 world premieres, 1 European premiere, 59 regional premieres, and 24 Serbian premieres, as well as 25 projects in development or various stages of production. At eleven locations across the city – Dom omladine Beograda, Jugoslovenska kinoteka, Kinoteka u Kosovskoj, Dvorana Kulturnog centra Beograda, Cineplexx Ušće, Art bioskop Kolarac, Centar za kulturu Vlada Divljan, Bioskop Balkan, Faculty of Media and Communications, Nova Iskra, Endžio hab – as well as on the television channel Insajder and the Beldocs+ VOD platform, audiences will have the opportunity to see some of the most significant documentary films from previous and current years. The entire festival program is available today on the website beldocs.rs, where tickets can be purchased directly.

The author of this year’s festival spot is Luka Papić, the winner of the Grand Prix Beldocs 2022 for the film ‘Without’.

“We are very pleased with the program of this year’s Beldocs! We are fortunate to engage in creative documentary filmmaking because the power of documentary film never diminishes. Documentary film festivals around the world are realized as very special vibrant spaces, but also as unique experiences of shared lucid insights into the phenomena of the world to which we are all inseparable parts. We have made a great program for our audience. It is very diverse and relevant! Everyone is welcome,” said Mara Prohaska Marković, director of Beldocs.
“As every year when the time comes to present the program, I am very excited and cheerful because it means that soon everyone else will have the opportunity to watch these films that I have spent months with and that have been selected from a huge number of films made available to us. There are so many absolute gems, from films that will be shown at Beldocs for the first time in front of any audience to already proven masterpieces whose screenings make up for what we missed. Today marks exactly one month until the start of the festival, a long month that will still pass, and until then, you have the chance to carefully browse through the program, which I recommend starting today, as it won’t be easy to decide to miss anything,” said Beldocs selector Igor Stanojević.

During this year’s selection process, we watched over 1500 films from all over the world. Sometimes you have to dig very deep to find a nugget of gold. When people ask me how I maintain focus in that process, I always say that personally, every good film fulfills and inspires me, especially every newcomer we discover who brings a new voice, expression, and stamp to the world of cinema,” said artistic director Marko Grba Singh.

At the conference, domestic and international competition programs were presented.

“The artistic director of the festival, Marko Grba Singh, draws attention to the Serbian competition program, which includes twelve films, among them award-winning and young domestic authors. The festival opens with the film ‘Warmth’ by Dragan Jovićević, and other films in the selection include ‘How To Be Slobodan’ (Nikola Polić), ‘Prison Beauty Contest’ (Srđan Šarenac), ‘The Garden Cadences’ (Dane Komljen), ‘The Tempest of Neptune’ (Katarina Stanković), ‘Novi Sad Remembrance’ (Aleksandar Reljić), ‘Joymakers’ (Jelena Radenović), ‘When I Grow Up Again’ (Jovana Avramović), ‘Minel’ (Tara Gajović), ‘Heterotopia’ (Nikola Nikolić), ‘Exit Through the Cuckoo’s Nest’ (Nikola Ilić), and ‘Walks That Won’t Happen’ (Mina Simendić).”

“As every year, we are proud of the original, brave, and diverse films by domestic authors. In the Serbian competition program, we will have twelve films: seven feature-length and five short films. Regarding premiere status, we have eight world premieres and four regional premieres,” concluded Grba Singh.

Igor Stanojević, the festival selector, announces ten films in the international competition program: ‘Sundial’ (Liis Nimik), ‘Once Upon A Family’ (Sead Šabotić), ‘La Reine’ (Nikola Klinger), ‘In Silence and Clamour’ (Clément Roussier, Hadrien Mossaz), ‘Mud’ (Ilya Povolotsky), ‘Rising Up at Night’ (Nelson Makengo), ‘Kumva’ (Sarah Mallégol), ‘Tedious Days and Nights’ (Guo Zhenming), ‘Tzipora and Rachel Are Not Dead’ (Hadar Morag), and ‘Dreaming Dogs’ (Elsa Kremser and Levin Peter).

“I am extremely proud of this program, its truly international nature, and the aesthetic and ethical integrity of the works it contains. Since the international competition program of Beldocs shifted its focus towards new authors and aesthetics, through its films, we have encountered a series of remarkably impactful directors, and the same goes for this year’s selection. What delights me the most is that the films come from various places and significantly differ from each other. There isn’t just one prescribed aesthetic; each of them is so thoroughly and eccentrically its own,” emphasized Stanojević.

“With the intention of deepening our understanding of certain social phenomena and events that deeply affected us in the previous year, we invited philosopher Srećko Horvat as a guest curator of this year’s Beldocs special titled ‘Survival is Not Enough’; we will not focus so much on the question of whether our species will survive, but rather what kind of society we want to live in,” added Prohaska Marković.

In addition to the special ‘Survival is Not Enough’, this year’s Beldocs will also feature a focus on Czech cinema in collaboration with one of the most significant documentary film festivals, Ji.hlava, and the Czech Center in Belgrade, as well as a screening of the film ‘This (Esto)’ presented by the New York-based documentary institute Union Docs. Like in previous years, Beldocs festival aims to empower young voices and provide education in the field of film and media literacy through the Teen program and MiniDoc workshops. As part of the XR exhibition: immersive reality, Beldocs will once again showcase the latest achievements in global production performed in contemporary artistic media through state-of-the-art technology. Additionally, this year Beldocs is launching a new program in collaboration with the Association of the Video Game Industry of Serbia called Play.Docs.

Thanks to numerous collaborations with world and European film festivals and many stakeholders in the international audiovisual industry, Beldocs has positioned itself as the main gathering place for film professionals in this part of Europe. As part of the Beldocs Industry Days program, a series of workshops, masterclasses, pitching sessions, and other activities aimed at developing new films and networking film experts will be held.
The sponsors of the prize fund are the Film Center of Serbia in the Serbian competition program, DOX TV in the International competition program, the EU Delegation to Serbia for the EU Audience Award for the best European documentary film in the competition program, and Al Jazeera Balkans, CurrentTime TV, and the Film Center of Montenegro for the best projects within the Beldocs Pitching Forum.

Beldocs is realized with the support of the European Union through the Creative Europe MEDIA program, the Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Serbia, the EU Delegation to Serbia, the Film Center of Serbia, the Film Center of Montenegro, MEDIA Desk Serbia, the Embassy of Spain, the Goethe Institute, the Austrian Cultural Forum, the French Institute, the British Council, the Polish Institute, the Czech Center Belgrade, the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO), the Central European Initiative, the Hemofarm Foundation, CurrentTime TV, Al Jazeera Balkans, and DOX TV.

About Beldocs
Beldocs, one of the leading international documentary film festivals in this part of Europe, takes place every May in Belgrade. Founded in 2008, this year it will feature 13 program sections, over 100 premieres, during the eight days of the festival, which are screened at 8 locations. The Beldocs festival awards 6 prizes in four competitive programs. In addition to film screenings, it organizes a series of panels and Master Class lectures, and within the Industry activities, cash prizes are awarded for the development of future films. Every year, it gathers over 150 international experts in the audiovisual industry, authors, and producers. More than 200 partners in Serbia, the region, and Europe support the work of the Beldocs film festival. A creative team of over 20 members organizes the Beldocs festival, including experts in film, design, and art. Since 2017, Beldocs has been a partner in European projects: #europeanfilmchallenge, AVA Doc, Moving Cinema, Young4Film, and is a member of the European Documentary Network. More information at www.beldocs.rs.

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