After three successful editions, which proved to be a very productive and important professional start-up for emerging documentary filmmakers from the Balkans, it is our pleasure to announce the upcoming BDC Discoveries 2013 – a project development workshop, aimed at uniting professionals with documentary projects with an international potential, and helping them to get exposed to potential financiers and partners on the European film market.
We are happy to have the support of the MEDIA Programme of the European Union for this year’s edition, which is yet another indication for the importance of BDC Discoveries.
The goal of the Balkan Documentary Center is to contribute to the formation of an active and informed civil society in the region through the development of the independent media and documentary sector. On the Balkans the documentary sector suffers from low level of professionalism, weak technical capacity and no skills of working in the international framework and marketplace. The purpose of the Center is to train and support emerging Eastern European documentary filmmakers and media professionals in international practices, providing know-how and in-house project development.
This year we are taking an even more ambitious step by opening up the workshop to a wider applicant profile, appealing primarily to European professionals aiming at a co-production partnership with the Balkans or working on a Balkan-related topic. In doing so, we believe to add another strategic tool for completion of our mission to make BDC a creative laboratory for linking European professionals and their production with Balkan documentary artists.
The key objective of BDC Discoveries 2013 is to supply documentary professionals with high-quality educational training of non-traditional and in-depth theoretical and practical knowledge in order to secure the necessary level of documentary audiovisual industry.
BDC Discoveries 2013 will take place within three module. welcoming tutors, participants and observers from more than 10 countries:
Module Sofia (6-12 May 2013) is the most intensive session. The first week-long module in Sofia has as a central topic a general script and marketing strategies development. Participants work together with tutors and observers on their own projects, attend lectures, join discussions and case studies. You can read here more about module Sofia. On our Facebook-page there is a rich photo gallery of the event.
Module Prizren (22-25 August 2013 *exact dates to be confirmed), hosted by our partner DokuFest, is focused on preparing the written proposals and the projects’ budgets with decisive feedback sessions, which will be targeted at packaging the projects. A final presentation in front of a jury, consisting of desicion-makers, experts and funders, is being organized, in order to give the participants the pitching experience.
Module Leipzig (28-31 October 2013 *exact dates to be confirmed), hosted by our partner DOK Leipzig, is an important follow-up session, dedicated to the successful exposure of our project to the industry. The Co-production Meeting will be an excellent possibility for the participants to benchmark on the international scene and to see their own projects in context of successful documentary films.
We are happy to announce the selected projects for this year’s edition of BDC Discoveries.
APNEA – THE ART OF NON BREATHING (Croatia)
directed by Bojana Burnac
produced by Iva Tkalec, RESTART
MEET ENVER HADRI (Belgium/Germany/France)
directed by Gilles Coton
produced by Isabel de la Serna, PLAYTIME FILMS
MY GREAT GRANDFATHER, MITA ZDRU, WAS PHOTOGRAPHED BY THE MANAKIA BROTHERS (Romania)
directed by Eliza Zdru
production manager Razvan Cliza
directed by Mihajlo Jevtic
produced by Natalia Imaz, PARABELLUM FILM
RIVER TALES (Bulgaria)
directed by Veselina Dashinova & Aline Helmcke
produced by Mina Mileva & Vesela Kazakova, ACTIVIST 38
TATJANA IN MOTHERLAND (Slovenia)
directed and produced by Miha Celar, ASTRAL FILM
executive producer Saso Kolaric, MANGART PRODUCTIONS
THE WITCH IN THE JAWS OF LIFE (Croatia)
directed by Mija Pavlisa & Senad Zemunovic
produced by Dana Budisavljevic, HULAHOP
Martichka Bozhilova, BDC Director and head of studies, has been producer of AGITPROP since 1999. She has degrees in law, art management, theology and graduated from the European program for producers EURODOC 2005. Her films have represented contemporary Bulgarian cinema on the top film festivals in the world: Cannes, Berlin, Toronto, Sundance, London, Pusan, Moscow, Karlovy Vary, Sarajevo, Rome, Madrid and many others. Among her films are the internationally multi-awarded “Georgi and the Butterflies”, “The Mosquito Problem and Other Stories” and “Corridor No.8″, as well as the first BG omnibus film “15″, “See You at the Eiffel Tower”, and the first original Bulgarian productions for HBO Central Europe – “Concrete Pharaohs” and “Paradise Hotel”. Martichka has also produced renowned “Dad Made Dirty Movies” and “The Boy Who Was a King”. In 2006 Martichka Bozhilova received the International Trailblazer Award, launched by Robert Redford and Sundance Channel at MIPDOC in Cannes for creativity, innovation, originality and breakthrough in the field of documentary cinema. Lecturer at various European workshops and events in the field of documentary cinema. Director of the Balkan Documentary Center (BDC) for supporting documentary filmmakers from the Balkans. Official representative of the European Documentary Network (EDN) in Bulgaria. In 2012 Martichka was ranked on the 49th place in the prestigious selection “100 Most Influential Women” of Bulgarian newspaper “Capital” and in top 7 of the most influential Bulgarian visionaries in the creative sector, according to business magazine “Forbes”.
Rada Sesic is a filmmaker, critic, lecturer and curator. Born in Bjelovar (Croatia), lived in Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina), now lives in the Netherlands. Rada collaborates on the programme of two biggest film festivals in The Netherlands: IFF Rotterdam and IDFA in Amsterdam and is on a selection of IDFA’s Jan Vrijman Fundsince its beginning. She is also one of commission members for the Hubert Bals Fund, and head of the Documentary Competition Programme of Sarajevo IFF. Rada is one of tutors of EDN at several international workshop-pitching sessions in Europe and Asia. Served at several juries at the film festivals around the world, including the Joris Ivens Jury at IDFA, Moscow, Krakow, Bombay, Toronto Hot Docs. Since last year is program advisor of DOK-Leipzig for South-East European and South Asian cinema. In the Netherlands Rada directed four films: Room Without a View (1997), Soske (2001), In Whitest Solitude (2001), The Way to School (2007). Her films were awarded at international festivals, screened and bought by MoMa New York.
Paul Pauwels has 30 years experience in the world of audiovisual production as UPM and producer. During the larger part of his career he has combined production and teaching/tutoring. Between 2007 and 2011 he was the director of the “European television and media management academy” in Strasbourg, France. During his active time as a producer, Paul Pauwels was a respected expert on matters of European documentary co-production. He shared his knowledge acting as a tutor and an expert for several organizations in many countries. A strong believer in sharing information, Paul has been the chairperson of the European Documentary Network (EDN) for the maximum period allowed by the statutes. Paul is a member of the General Assembly of the Flemish Film Fund (VAF). He is teaching at the Media and Design faculty in Genk, Belgium and is managing partner in Congoo bvba.
Boris Mitic was born in 1977 in Leskovac, southern Serbia. Lived on a few continents, graduated in mass communication, settled back in Belgrade, fought a war, worked for 5 years for top-level international media, understood some things and dedicated the rest of his life to his family, football and creative documentaries. His three films were shown at 150+ festivals around the world, received 18 awards and were broadcast on 25 international TV channels. Writes satirical columns for Playboy and DOX magazine and lectures at film schools in Europe, China, the US and the Middle East. Started a new 5-year doc project about Nothing. His filmography includes: PRETTY DYANA (2003), UNMIK TITANIK (2004), GOODBYE, HOW ARE YOU? (2009).
Simone Baumann was born in 1963 in Zschopau/Saxony. She graduated from Rostov-upon-Don State University (Russia), where she studied philosophy from 1982 till 1987. After graduating she has been lecturing at the philosophy department of Humboldt University and working as a researcher at the Hegel Institute in Berlin, Germany. At the early ‘90s she started as a production assistant at the domestic politics department of MDR in Dresden, Germany. In the following years she has been a managing director and producer fro Pro7 Network and LE Vision. Since 2003, Simone is board member of AG DOK – the German Association of documentary producers. Since 2005 she is a representative of Eastern Europe for German Films. Since 2009 Simone is head of the German managing committee of the Friends of the German-Russian Film Academy. Last year she started working as an executive producer at Saxonia Entertainment GmbH, Germany.
Aleksandar Manic was born in former Yugoslavia and moved at the age of 10 to Germany, where he studied philosophy at the Cologne University, moving on to FAMU in Prague. His graduation film Shooting Days – Emir Kusturica directs Underground premiered at IDFA and was nominated for the Joris Ivens Award. Picked up by Jane Balfour Ltd., the film was subsequently sold to TV stations in a number of countries. Since 1996, Aleksandar Manić has focused on making documentary films mainly concerned with Balkan-related and human rights topics, often combining the comical with the tragic. He has made films for both cinema and television, including The Walls of Kosovo – a province at war, The Orphans of Enver Hoxha, and The Shutka Book of Records.
Melody Gilbert is an award-winning independent documentary filmmaker and educator, whose work is noteworthy for featuring a rare intimacy with her subjects as she unearths previously hidden worlds. She works mostly solo, querying her subjects from behind the camera, giving voice to ordinary people with extraordinary stories. She has the uncanny ability to get people to open up and reveal their innermost thoughts, whether it’s the family of a child who can’t feel pain, a couple who gets married at the world’s largest shopping mall, a former vice president of the United States or a physically healthy person who desperately wants to become an amputee. She has directed, shot, produced, filmed (and sometimes edited) five independent feature-length documentaries since 2002: Married at the Mall (2002) Whole (2003) A Life Without Pain (2005) Urban Explorers: Into the Darkness (2007) Fritz: The Walter Mondale Story (2008).
Stefano Strocchi is an Italian documentary producer and director. His first documentary film as author/director titled OVERBOOKED was produced in 2007 by Stefilm in co-production with ITVS International (USA), and premiered in 2008 on PBS World. Stefano Strocchi has been the producer for multiple documentaries, and has worked with such channels as Discovery Channel Europe, ZDF/ARTE, WideAngle/PBS and National Geographic Channel. In 2007 he founds his own production company MOVE Productions, with which he has developed several documentary projects, including Almost Married by Turkish-Italian director team Fatma Bucak and Sergio Fergnachino, and the interactive web project From Zero, an online platform webcasting daily episodes from the mountainous Italian region of Abruzzo, which focuses on its recovery from the huge earthquake it suffered.
Guillermo Carreras-Candi is a filmmaker, producer and programer from Barcelona. He studied History and Sound before graduating at the Catalan film university (ESCAC-UB) where he specialized in Documentary Film. Since 2002 he started a constant relation with the Balkan region where he lived in 2006 and made his graduation film Tragovi (2010) and the video exhibition Eho Tragova (2011). He is currently collaborating as a programer with the Pravo Ljudski Film Festival Sarajevo, where he also leads the creative documentary school. He collaborates with Dokufest Prizren (Kosovo), tutoring the film workshop “Skhola e Filmit Documentar”. As a producer he has been mainly focused on the new media territory, producing new video and documentary formats for the Spanish online music and cultural magazine PlayGround where he leads the audiovisual area since 2008 and has directed several productions in partnership with well know international music festivals such as Sónar, Primavera Sound or Unsound.
Pavlina Michailova doesn’t have the patience to paint an entire door but she won’t think twice about volunteering in an AIDS orphanage in Africa or jumping over walls into people’s gardens to search for bird traps in Cyprus. Pavlina’s first job was wife of a diplomat and her latest is scriptwriter. She is also doctor of medicine, editor, master of environmental studies, volunteer, publisher, world traveler, author of “Trace of a Rhino” which in 1996 was the first documentary book about Zimbabwe written by a Bulgarian. Her second book “The Great Cleansing” was published with the financial support of the European Parliament and was awarded first prize for green journalism in 2012. She wrote the scripts for six documentaries about wildlife and nature protection in Bulgaria which were broadcast by the Bulgarian National Television. She is a member of FIJET (International organization of traveling journalists and writers), Union of the Bulgarian journalists, Balkani Wildlife Society, Bulgarian Aikido Association.
Yana Kostova is a librarian at the National Film Archive working on projects for the Odeon Cinema, Sofia. She has MA in art history and theory from the National Academy of Fine Arts and has specialized Arts management at the International Center for Cultural Management, Salzburg and curatorial practices in contemporary art at the ICA, Yerevan. She has carried out an internship at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice and worked as assistant curator at Kunsthaus Graz, collaborating with KiZ Kino Royal, Graz, as well as the Michelangelo Pistoletto Foundation in Italy among others. She is currently studying primary school education and volunteering at the Artist Foundation by the ‘P.R. Slaveykov” Orphanage in Sofia.