The jury will feature Hungarian artist Eniko Eszenyi, whose accomplishments include a Critics’ Award and other prizes for best actress and director. She has performed in over fifty films. As soon as she graduated from the University of Drama, Film and Television in Budapest, she obtained an engagement at Hungary’s biggest theatre. Before long she was taking lead roles and creating her own programme, and in 1992 she became the theatre’s director. Since then she has been offered numerous positions at home and abroad, and she has worked in places such as Prague, Bratislava and even Washington, D.C. Another member of Art Film Fest’s main jury will be German curator, dramaturge and film festival director Heiko Fischer. She has worked as project manager of Film Festival Cottbus as well as Braunschweig International Film Festival. She is the founder and current director of the Neisse Film Festival, which has since 2004 been held where the borders of Germany, Poland, and the Czech Republic meet. She has also functioned as the programme curator for the German film club Kommunales Kino Cottbus, and since 2000, for the Polish film festival Lubuskie Film Summer as well. The juror’s bench will also welcome American critic and publicist Jay Weissberg. Living in Rome since 2001, he is an expert on Italian cinema. In 2003 he became a part of the team at the prestigious magazine Variety, where he is their resident critic of Italian film. His articles have also appeared in the specialised periodicals Sight and Sound and Senses of Cinema. He regularly takes part in numerous panel discussions and is invited to festival juries throughout Europe.
Arriving from the neighbouring Czech Republic, actor and director Jan Kačer will grace the festival jury as well. In 1960 he graduated from the direction department of the Theatre Faculty at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. While still a student he worked at Ostrava’s P. Bezruča Theatre. His first leading film role was given by the Oscar-winning directors Ján Kadár and Elmar Klos, in the novel-based film Death Is Called Engelchen.
In the 1960s and 70s, he was a founding member of Prague’s Činoherní Klub. There he functioned as director, with plays such as The Cherry Orchard, The Inspector General and The Lower Depths under his belt. As an actor, he appeared as Raskolnikov in the play Crime and Punishment. At the end of the 1970s, he became a member of E. F. Buriana Theatre in Prague and of Ostrava’s Státní Divadlo. He also made guest appearances at other theatres, and even directed at Oslo’s National Theatre. From 1990 to 1997, he directed plays at the National Theatre in Prague. And over the course of his career, Jan Kačer hasn’t avoided film or television either.
Slovakia will be represented in the five-member international jury by actress, singer and globetrotter Dorota Nvotová. At the tender age of six, this daughter of actress Anna Šišková appeared in the television film Tajomstvá pod viečkami (Secrets Under Lids), directed by Juraj Nvota, and in the fairy-tale Sleeping Beauty, directed by Stanislav Párnicky. As a nine-year-old, she acted in the children’s musical Bambi, and at ten in Astorka Theatre. She has been shooting films since she was fourteen. She has performed in the films Orbis Pictus, Landscape, Girlie, Coal Tower, A Matter of Life and Music. She was a member of the Czech-Slovak musical collective Overground, where she sang, while also singing as a member of the cult group Slobodná Európa, known by the nickname “Whisky”. Later she set off on her solo career. Among Art Film Fest’s most diverse sections is the Competition of Short Films. The section’s draw lies in the variety of its line-up, which will offer more than forty new releases from Iceland and New Zealand to Chile and the Phillippines. The award for best short film is coupled with a monetary prize of five-thousand euros for the director of the winning film, which will be decided by a three-member international jury, including distinguished Polish film historian and theorist Jadwiga Glowa, who holds the position of professor at Jagiellonian University. She already has a wealth of experience serving in film festival juries in many corners of the globe. One of her fellow-jurors will be Romanian screenwriter and director Adrian Sitaru. For his 2007 short film Waves, he won a Golden Leopard at the Locarno Film Festival and an award at the Sarajevo festival, in addition to over twenty other prizes. The picture even made it into the Official Competition of the 2008 Sundance Festival.
In 2008 he completed his first feature-length film, Hooked, which was selected for festivals in Venice and Toronto, screened at the Bratislava International Film Festival and awarded at festivals in Palm Springs, Thessaloniki and Buenos Aires. Slovakia will be represented by animator, director and producer Ivana Zajacová. She graduated from the Animation Department of the Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts in Bratislava, where she currently teaches. Her bachelor’s project To Know received the jury’s recognition at the 2000 Cineteca Bologna festival in Italy, and was included in the official corporate presentation KODAK Talent 2000 at Cannes. Her graduation project, NAZDRAVÍČKO! (Gesundheit!), which she co-directed with Jozef Mitaľ, was awarded with the 2006 Sun in a Net National Film Award in the Animated Film category. Holding positions from animated actress, designer and animator to production, she has co-operated on pictures by a variety of filmmakers, such as Today is My First Date from director Boris Šíma and Pik a Nik from director Martin Snopek. In 2006 she established a company focusing on the production of animated films, and has since worked on various projects as producer. The first title produced by her company, director Ivana Šebestová’s Four, was premiered in December 2007, and has since then amassed numerous international awards. ———————————————————————————————————– Organizers: ART FILM, n.o., FORZA Production House Co-Organizers: the Town of Trenčianske Teplice, the Town of Trenčín, Health Spa Trenčianske Teplice
The Festival is made possible through the financial support of the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic.
General Sponsors: AquaCity Poprad, zdravotná poisťovňa Dôvera
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