28th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

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Docu Talents from the East 2019

Your guide to brand new documentary films in progress from Central and Eastern Europe, a region with a long documentary tradition and a range of remarkable and creative filmmakers who have emerged in recent years. Docu Talents is presented as part of CineLink Industry Days at the Sarajevo Film Festival. Directors and producers of the selected feature-length documentaries will introduce their projects during eight-minute presentations.

Selected Docu Talents from the East projects 2019



Director: Jani Sever
Film length: 88 min
Country: Slovenia
Producer: Nina Jeglič
Director of photography: Mitja Ličen
Estimated date of premiere: February 2020

The documentary combines the three endings of Antigone from Slavoj Žižek’s play, with footage of European history, speeches in the European Parliament, panels from the Davos World Economic Forum, protests in the streets of European cities, political propaganda, artistic works ... and dialogue with the play’s author. By enacting Žižek’s Antigone, the film seeks answers to global social, political and economic questions, presented through choices of Antigone, King Creon and the Chorus. Should our highest priority be respect for state law, or should we follow a moral law, or is there a third choice?

Director's biography
Previously a journalist and for ten years (1996–2006) editor-in-chief of the leading Slovene political weekly Mladina, Jani Sever in 2006 founded the first Slovene independent internet multimedia project, called Vest. His career led him to film production, direction and screenwriting. In 2011 he founded the production company Sever&Sever, which over the past eight years has produced 10 documentaries and directed three.

Production company
Sever & Sever d.o.o.
Trubarjeva 21a, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
nina.jeglic@gmail.com, +38 651 449 933


Director: Alina Gorlova
Film length: 90 min
Countries: Ukraine, Latvia
Producer: Maksym Nakonechnyi
Co-Producer: Ilona Bicevska
Director of photography: Viacheslav Tsvetkov
Estimated date of premiere: November 2019

Fleeing Syrian conflict, young Andriy’s family unexpectedly landed in Ukrainian. Now he helps people in the so-called war-torn ‘grey’ zone himself, as a Red Cross volunteer. He balances between a peaceful and military world, traditional and contemporary lifestyle, neutrality and passionate ideas, keeping or losing his connection with family, spread around the world because of war. Some of them suffer from its consequences, some try to escape and some fight, but all exist in the grey. Will Andriy manage to get out of it, making his first steps in adult life, with all identities lost?

Director's biography
Alina Gorlova is a director and film editor. She was born and lives in Ukraine. She graduated from the Karpenko-Kary Kyiv National University of Theatre, Film and TV. She directs documentaries but also is experienced in making fiction shorts, social and commercialads. In 2016 Alina presented her first feature-length documentary, Kholodny Yar. Intro. It was presented at the Odesa IFF (Ukraine) and Artdocfest (Moscow, Russia). Her second movie, No obvious signs, received four awards at the Docudays festival and an MDR award for outstanding Eastern European movie at the international competition of DOK Leipzig 2018.

Production company
420 6 Bratska st, 04070, Kyiv, Ukraine
nakonechnyi@taborproduction.com, +38 093 424 4919


Director: Luka Papić
Film length: 80 min
Country: Serbia
Producer: Srđa Vučo
Co-Producer: Nevena Savić
Director of photography: Luka Papić
Estimated date of premiere: June 2020

The Box is a documentary film about one of the strangest times in modern Serbian history. After 45 years of communist single party governance in Serbia, in July 1990 other political parties gained legal status. Due to the decades-old single-party system, the opposition naively and comically pioneers its pluralistic beginnings. By using imprecise and subjective memories of protagonists, a humorous prism of the 1990 election media campaign landscape, public gatherings and interviews with presidential candidates, The Box explores the basic nature of politics and questions what actually is democracy.

Director's biography
Luka Papić was born in Vrbas, Serbia in 1989. In 2011, he started studies at HFBK University of Fine Arts Hamburg of arts in the film department. In 2016 he finished MFA studies in the class of Angela Schanelec. He received the Encouraging New Talent Award – a grant (support for graduation plans) – for the best graduation work of 2016 for the short film Grapevines (2016). During his studies in Hamburg, he was supported by a K.H. Ditze grant and the Freundeskreis project development fund. Filmography: Man of Smoke (2017), premiered at DOK Leipzig; Grapevine (2016), premiered at Visions du Réel, Nyon; Without (post production, 2019)

Production company
Cinnamon films
Vladimira Tomanovića 5, Belgrade, Serbia
srdja@bkvfond.org, +381 648 588 574,


Director: Viera Čákanyová
Film length: 73 min
Country: Czech Republic
Producer: Nina Numankadić
Co-Producer: Ivan Ostrochovský
Director of photography: Tomáš Klein, Viera Čákanyová
Estimated date of premiere: November 2019

“Frem” is a word that does not mean anything; a word that just reminds of something, its closest etymological connotation being the Old English word “fremd”, meaning foreign. Trying to create a universal artificial intelligence, we cannot escape anthropomorphic thinking, since we cannot get beyond the limits of our own brains. The film FREM is an attempt to “get beyond” these limits; an attempt to make a non-anthropomorphic film. It is an audiovisual requiem for the Homo sapiens species.

Director's biography
Viera Čákanyová (*1980) graduated from the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava in screenwriting and received a BA from the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague in documentary film. Her films have been presented at international festivals and won a number of awards. Besides working on her own films, she also works as script editor and editor of independent film projects, and makes documentary films for non-profit organizations and television. Filmography: Rupicapra, 2014 (part of the project Slovakia 2.0); Flying Horse, 2014 (part of the project Gottland); Update, 2011; Olda, 2011; Alda, 2009; 100 Days, 2009; Worms, 2007; Piranha, 2007; Under Underground, 2007

Production company
Hypermarket Film
Křemencova 10, 110 00 Prague, Czech Republic
nina@dafilms.com, +420 606 613 058


Director: Polina Moshenska
Film length: 52 / 70 min
Country: Ukraine, Germany
Producer: Natalia Libet
Co-Producers: Polina Moshenska, Michael Sladek
Director of photography: Giorgos Gerasimidis
Estimated date of premiere: September 2019

This is the personal story of Polina Moshenska, the director of the film. She moved from Kyiv, Ukraine to Thessaloniki, Greece to reunite with her beloved. She details the story about the effort it takes to cover a great distance and the obstacles encountered along the way, about the relationship with her Greek husband and her still pulsing connection to Ukraine. The film has the charm of non-powdered faces, uneven walks, family scenes, inner struggles, the search to find necessary words, and dreams set against an unpolished reality.

Director's biography
Polina Moshenska is a Ukrainian filmmaker and visual artist. She has graduated from the National University of Kyiv Mohyla Academy with an MA in Cultural Studies. Her first short documentary, The Bridge, was selected by international festivals all over the world. Her short Tsvetayeva and Mayakovsky (Streets) won the main prize at the 86 Festival of Film and Urbanism in Slavutych, Ukraine in 2016; it has also participated in festivals and programs, such as: East Silver at the 20th Ji.hlava IDFF, Doc Market at Thessaloniki IFF, Portobello Film Festival, Artdocfest, Aegeandocs, etc.

Production company
70A Saksahanskoho Street,
Office 1, Kiev, Ukraine
n.libet@essehouse.com, +38 067 502 2199


Directors: Bálint Révész, Dávid Mikulán
Film length: 90 min
Countries: Hungary, Germany, Croatia
Producer: Viki Réka Kiss
Co-producers: Tobias Siebert, Rea Rajčić
Director of photography: Dávid Mikulán
Estimated date of premiere: November 2019

KIX is a story about Sanyi, a troubled street boy, as he grows from 8 to 18. Over a decade, he turns from a mischievous youth into a public enemy. The film shows the adventures and struggles of the young boy as he hops, skips and jumps his way through the minefield of grown-up society. The film looks at the challenges of existence in urban environments of today’s Europe. When one of Sanyi’s pranks ends in a fatal accident, the experimental action movie turns into a fable. The question is: will he elevate himself above the path society has carved out for him, or succumb to self-destruction?

Director's biography
Bálint Révész is a young director/producer who focuses on the frontier between documentary and fiction. He graduated from the University of Brighton in 2012. His first feature documentary, Granny Project, which was 7 years in the making, received the MDR prize at Dok Leipzig, the Next Generation Award at Taiwan IDFF, received a Doc Alliance nomination, and was featured at Hot Docs, CPH:DOX, amongst other major festivals.
Dávid Mikulán is an intermedia artist who graduated from the Fine Art University, Budapest. As part of his studies he attended courses at Hamburg University of Applied Science - Film and Media Technology and was a participant at the ‘Space of uncertainty’ project touring around Krakow, Budapest and Stuttgart. Amongst numerous group and solo exhibitions, he collaborated with the Conceptual Soundproductions Budapest, Kolibri Theatre and Hungarian State Opera. His multidisciplinary works reflect on how public spaces have an effect on social structures.

Production company
Bártók Béla st 10-12, III/33, 1111 - Budapest, Hungary
viki.reka@elfpictures.hu, +36 70 317 53 74


Director: Jindřich Andrš
Film length: 90 min
Country: Czech Republic
Producers: Miloš Lochman, Augustina Micková
Director of photography: Tomáš Frkal
Estimated date of premiere: November 2019

Tomas lives in industrial Ostrava. His peaceful life is disrupted by the closure of the Paskov mine, where he had worked for over 20 years. Tomas is forced to requalify. After completing the tough programming course, he discovers that his ability to write a working code is not enough. It is far more difficult is to sell himself in a new career. Suddenly, a positive reply comes, and Tomas joins an IT company as a programmer. Now he sits in an air-conditioned office in front of several monitors, writing emails to his colleagues sitting next to him. Meetings, briefings, brainstorming. It is time to ask an unpleasant question. What has he lost?

Director's biography
Jindřich Andrš is currently in his final year of study in the Documentary film department at FAMU. He is mainly focused on directing documentary films. As a director, he has received several festival awards for his short film The Last Shift of Tomas Hisem in which a coal miner records his last shift on a hidden camera attached to his helmet. The film could be considered as a prequel for Andrš’s upcoming feature debut A New Shift, where follows the same protagonist for another 2 years.

Production company
moloko film s.r.o.
U Vorlíků 367/3, 160 00 Prague 6, Czech Republic
milk@molokofilm.com, milos@molokofilm.com, +420 603 477 707


Director: Filip Jacobson
Film length: 52 min
Country: Poland
Producer: Karolina Galuba
Director of photography: Filip Jacobson
Estimated date of premiere: August 2020

A portrait of Europe from the outside - from the perspective of Japanese tourists. Recorded on their holiday videos. Found footage allows a deep reflection and serves as a distorted mirror. It will be contrasted with observations on Europe described in the Japanese travel literature, diaries and blogs. How does Europe look from the outside? What happens when it’s not perceived as multinational and diverse; when all those complicated elements of the European identity get mixed and confused?

Director's biography
Filip Jacobson is a filmmaker and visual artist who makes social observation documentaries. He completed his graduate studies at Lodz University, and further developed his film education at Gdynia Film School and will finish his postgraduate studies at the Academy of Media Arts Cologne. He was an exchange student at EICTV in Cuba, participated in various workshops: Berlinale Talent Campus, EsoDoc, GoShort Talent Campus, Polska Doc. Recently, he was giving film classes at Gdansk University at the Culture Studies Department and at School of Form in Poland. He received the Golden Dove at DOK Leipzig in 2016.

Production company
Furia Film
Zaruskiego 27b/16, 81-577 Gdynia, Poland
karolina.galuba@furiafilm.pl, +48 600 22 33 87


Director: Andra Tarara
Film length: 75 min
Country: Romania
Producers: Anamaria Antoci, Anda Ionescu
Director of photography: Andra Tarara, Ion Tarara
Estimated date of premiere: November 2019

A common passion and a debilitating mental disorder bring a daughter and her father together and apart, in front of the camera. While their relationship unfolds, a more complex discussion and social dynamics take shape, touching upon the inability to communicate, the transmission of trauma through generations, education and personal development, and stigma of mental illness. A series of dialogues alternate with daily life sequences, brought to us either from present reality footage or from the father’s VHS archives.

Director's biography
Andra Tarara is a documentary film director, camera operator, editor, video artist, photographer and archivist. She is a UNATC graduate in Film and Television (2016) and has a master’s degree graduate in Visual Anthropology from SNSPA in Bucharest (2018). She is interested in a collaborative approach of the artistic process on subjects such as personal stories pertaining to wider social, political, and historical mechanisms. A Death in My Family (Transylvania IFF 2018) is her first film as a director, a short documentary filmed on 35mm + digital, which she also shot and edited.

Production company
Tangaj Production
12-14 Constantin Budisteanu, C1 Building, 1st floor, apt.11, Bucharest, Romania
anamaria@tangajproduction.comanda@tangajproduction.com, +407 401 556 02


Director: Margit Lillak
Film length: 90 min
Country: Estonia
Producer: Johanna Trass
Director of photography: Mihkel Soe, Margit Lillak
Estimated date of premiere: November 2019

We follow a newly formed eco-community from 2014 with blissful beginnings to their apocalyptic collapse in 2019. A group of adults together with kids steps out of society as we know it, deconstructing the basic pillars of life - from nuclear family to relationships and education. Narrative structure shapes itself around the founders of the commune, two strong emancipated women who fall into a power struggle triggered by a love triangle. Families split, friendships are compromised. The director has been closely involved in the community processes with intimate access to strong emotional scenes.

Director's biography
Margit Lillak graduated from the Estonian Academy of Art as a set designer in 1999. In 2002, she graduated from the Royal Holloway College in UK with an MA degree in screenwriting. After that, she started her collaboration with Allfilm. She has directed several short documentaries out of which Pastacas was awarded the main prize at the EstDocs Film Festival competition in Toronto. In 2012 she directed her first full-length documentary, 40+2 weeks, as a first-person film about her own pregnancy and childbirth. The Circle is her second full-length film.

Production company
Allfilm OÜ
Saue 11, Tallinn 10612, Estonia
johanna@allfilm.ee, +372 672 9070



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