21 September, Bitola – At a convenient cocktail party at the Hotel Epinal on 20 September, the awards that are being given for the first time this year were presented – for the best engaged documentary film, awarded by the Municipality of Bitola, and for the best film according to the audience from the Makpoint program.

The three-member jury which decided upon the best documentary film, gave the award to the film For Sama by the director and cinematographer Waad al-Kateab and the director Edward Watts, describing it as an intimate and epic journey in times of war, through the eyes of a journalist. Using the camera, the journalist has captured the dramatic moments in Aleppo, Syria, and the suffering of the innocent people during the dreadful bombings and the war assaults on the city.

-Together with the major of Bitola, Natasha Petrovska, we decided to introduce this award to the festival, because in that way we continue the tradition of the Manaki brothers, who were the first documentarists of these areas. I hope that this approach and attitude towards their work will stay as a legacy for the ones to be part of this festival in the future and that they will nurture the documentary film, Gena Teodosievska, director of the festival, said.

In the Makpoint program, which showcased the newest Macedonian authors, the audience voted after every screening and, according to their votes, the film Skopje 2020 by the director Radovan Petrovic and the cinematographer Andrei Lembanov won.

-We decided to introduce this award and in that way to include the audience in the festival and the film world even more. I hope that the award will motivate the young Macedonian film professionals to continue their work and to be part of the Makpoint program, Ana Vasilevska, selector of the program, said.