2 October, Skopje –. We are glad to inform you that after the successful finish of the 38th edition of the International Cinematographers’ Film Festival “Manaki Brothers”, which took place from 23 to 30 September in Bitola, the Manager of the Center of Culture in Bitola, Zoran Dimovski, gave us one of the rooms within the Center at disposal to serve as the Manaki Brothers office over the entire year. We would like to thank him for his will to collaborate and his commitment to the importance of the festival for Bitola and Macedonia.
At this year’s Festival edition we had great attendance of the screenings. The opening ceremony traditionally attracted the biggest crowds, this year with the short film by Milcho Manchevski, “The End of Time”. Milcho was our laureate of the Special Golden Camera 300 for Outstanding Contribution to World Cinema Art and the film “Directions”, a Bulgarian-Macedonian coproduction.
The screenings of the films “Frog”, “In the Fade”, “On Body and Soul” and “When the Day had no Name” were the ones with record attendance this year, along with the Short Film Program, as well as the Student and Mak Point programs.
The hall was not completely full at the closing ceremony of the “Manaki Brothers” because although the Festival have 250 tickets to the Municipality of Bitola, a lot of the guests that the Municipality should have given the tickets to, did not show up, while the Bitola film-lovers were unable to come and greet the laureates, among whom our own Naum Doksevski, Dejan Dimeski and Milcho Manchevski who were presented with awards.
Over 100 film titles – long-feature, shorts, fiction, documentaries, student films, children’s films were screened in the 10 festival program.
We had master-classes of the Laureates of the Golden Camera 300 for Lifetime Achievement: Giuseppe Rotunno and Pierre Lhomme, who, in spite of his age, was our guest in Bitola and spoke about the importance of the cinematographers’ work in cinema art.
The most successful Macedonian film director, Milcho Manchevski, held a master class on the work of the overall film crew, from the moment when the initial idea for a certain film occurs, through the pre-production period, the process of defining the script, choosing the cast and crew, shooting the film until post-production and screening it.
Within the program “First Films First”carried out in collaboration with the Goethe Institute, the world famous cinematographer Christian Berger held a master-class.
In collaboration with the Creative Europe EU Programme, the producer Graziella Bildesheim (Italy) held a lecture focusing on young producers and the challenges they are facing.
Although the regular supporters of the Student Program cancelled their financial assistance this year, the Festival, aware about the importance of this program, decided to finance it from its own budget and somehow managed to put it together after all. The audience had the chance to see screenings of student films from 14 academies in the region, and every screening was followed by an exceptionally fruitful discussion moderated by Gjorgi Pulevski.
This year we also launched the Manaki Monograph which was edited by Robert Jankuloski.
A total of 9 awards were presented at the 38 ICFF Manaki Brothers: two Golden Cameras 300 for lifetime achievement to Giuseppe Rotunno and Pierre Lhomme each. The Special Camera 300 for Outstanding Contribution to World Cinema Art was given to Milcho Manchevski. The Great Star of Macedonian Cinema presented by MFPA went to the Production Company Vardar Film, for their exceptional contribution to Macedonian cinema.
And according to the decisions of the international jury: the Small Camera 300 went to the Macedonian cinematographer Naum Doksevski for the short film directed by Goran Stolevski “Would You Look at Her”. The Special Mention went to the young Russian cinematographer Daniil Fomichev, for the film “How Victor “the Garlic”, took Aleksey “the Stud” to the Nursing Home”. The Bronze Camera 300 went to Dejan Dimeski for the film “Frog” directed by Elmir Jukic. The Silver Camera 300 went to Rainer Klausman for the film “In the Fade” directed by Fatih Akin. The Golden Camera 300 went to the Hungarian Marcel Rev, the cinematographer of “Jupiter’s Moon”.
This year, the festival marked several jubilees: 100 years since the establishing of ARRI, the company from the motion pictures industry founded in Munich in 1947; 90 years since the birth of Dimitrie – Ruli Osmanli, a film, theater and television director from Bitola, 70 years since the founding of the state production company Vardar Film, and 35 years of EFA and 25 years since the founding of the European Federation of Cinematographers IMAGO.
In the festival press-center an exhibition was organized – homage “Giuseppe Rotunno’s Corner” with a photo-gallery and in commemoration of the two other jubilees – 70 years since the founding of Vardar Film and 65 years since the first Macedonian feature film “Frosina. In collaboration with the Cinematheque of Macedonia we organized exhibitions of photos and film posters.
The festival lasted 8 days, a total of 25 press-conferences were held with the participation of more than 50 guests and festival organizers. 120 domestic journalists, camerapersons and photo-reporters got accreditations for the festival, and this year we also had a record number of accredited foreign journalists.
We would like to thank the Film Agency, the MFPA, the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Macedonia, and all the supporters and sponsors who recognized a creative partner in our festival, the Cinematheque of Macedonia, the National Theater – Bitola, the Center of Culture – Bitola, the media, the Bitola Archive, the Festival Director Blagoja Kunovski – Dore, the Artistic Director of the Festival, Gena Teodosievska, the entire festival team, the volunteers, and most of all the loyal Bitola audience who we will meet next year too.