Sarajevo Film Festival 2017: What’s In It For Young People

The 23rd edition of the Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF), one of the biggest film festivals in Southeastern Europe, has kicked off on Friday, the 11th August. The day after, on 12th August, the Youth Initiative for Human Rights in Bosnia and Herzegovina (YIHR BiH) has launched Docu Corner, a place for debate and reflection on films screened as part of the Documentaries Competition Programme at the Film Festival.

Each year, Docu Corner hosts young people from the Western Balkans region (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro and Kosovo) and other parts of Europe and gives participants the opportunity to discuss issues raised in the movies screened, mostly human rights-related. This is a part of the Competition Programme of Documentary Film, which presents and promotes the best and most recent documentary productions from Southeastern Europe and the Southern Caucasus.

Docu Corner

Besides Docu Corner, SFF offers plenty of other programs targeted at young people.

Within the TeenArena program, Teen Arena Films are characterized by situations from the experience of growing up, mutual relations between society and teenagers, the obstacles this population group encounters, and how it overcomes them and learns how to form its own critical standpoint and opinion.

TeenAction is a project designed for young filmmakers, who are given a chance to present their work at SFF for the fifth year in a row. It offers teenagers from Bosnia and Herzegovina an opportunity for creative expression through making short films on the topics that confront their age group. By participating in the TeenAction competition, teenagers have the opportunity to win one of the sponsors’ awards and within the TeenAction meets Punk Cinema programme show their work to the TeenArena audience during the Sarajevo Film Festival, as well as to the audience of the Operation Kino “traveling” project in BH cities throughout the year.

Writer, producers, and directors from Bosnia and Herzegovina – who must be under the age of 20 – were selected through an open call. The required submission is a short movie (not longer than 7 minutes and made within the last 2 years) with a special focus on the lives and problems of young people in today’s society.

Furthermore, the Competition Program – Student Film has been introduced to promote student films that originate from regional schools, faculties, or academies. This programme makes available a new platform for young and talented future film professionals at the very beginning of their careers. It features fiction, documentary, and animated films up to 60 minutes, produced as a part of the educational process at one of the regional film schools, faculties, or academies. 

As an educational and networking platform for young filmmakers, the SFF once again confirms its status as the leading film festival in the region. Stay tuned for many more SFFs to come.

Photo: Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF)


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