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Karlovy Vary International Film Festival

Karlovy Vary IFF is the most significant int`l festival, recognized by FIAPF, in the Central and Eastern Europe. Apart from the competitions it brings the unique opportunity to see the newest production and works in progress from the C.E. E


juries of the 53rd Karlovy Vary IFF


Grand Jury

Mark Cousins

Mark Cousins, Irish-Scottish director and writer. His films – including The First MovieThe Story of Film: An OdysseyWhat Is This Film Called Love?Life May BeA Story of Children and FilmI Am Belfast, AtomicStockholm My Love and The Eyes of Orson Welles – are about childhood, cities, recovery, walking, and cinema. They have won a Prix Italia, a Peabody, and a Stanley Kubrick Award and have screened around the world. His books include Imagining Reality: The Faber Book of Documentary and The Story of Looking. He writes for Sight & Sound and Filmkrant and has collaborated with Tilda Swinton on playful film events. His new project is a 15-hour documentary which rethinks cinema.

Zrinka Cvitešić

Zrinka Cvitešić, film, TV, and theater actor, was born in Croatia and began acting on stage at age 13 in a production of Cinderella. She graduated in acting from Zagreb’s Academy of Dramatic Arts. In 2005 she joined the Croatian National Theater, starring in such plays as Romeo and JulietThree SistersWar and PeaceA Midsummer Night’s Dream, and The Threepenny Opera. Her acting career has been honored with numerous awards, with the pivotal role of Luna coming in Jasmila Žbanić’s On the Path (2010); the part earned her a nomination from the European Film Academy and she was selected as a Berlinale Shooting Star for 2010 – one of Europe’s ten best young actors. In 2014 she became the first Croat to win the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a musical (Once). She was recently seen in Woody Harrelson’s Lost in London.

Marta Donzelli

Marta Donzelli, Italian producer, founded Vivo film with Gregorio Paonessa in 2004, and to date they have a catalogue of over 40 titles. Their productions include Michelangelo Frammartino’s Le Quattro Volte – Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes 2010, Emma Dante’s A Street in Palermo (Via Castellana Bandiera – main competition at Venice 2013); Laura Bispuri’s Sworn Virgin (Vergine Giurata – main competition at Berlin 2015) and Daughter of Mine (Figlia mia – main competition at Berlin 2018), Andrea De Sica’s Children of the Night (I Figli della Notte), and Nico, 1988 by Susanna Nicchiarelli, whose picture took Best Film from the Orizzonti section at last year’s festival in Venice.

Zdeněk Holý

Zdeněk Holý worked as an editor for Cinepur film magazine, serving as editor-in-chief in 2007–2010. In his 2005 study “Emptied Narration” he identified the rising tide of minimalist films. In 2008–2012 he was director of the academic press at Prague’s Academy of Performing Arts (AMU). He authored the story for Daniel’s World (Panorama section at Berlin 2015), which he also produced. In 2017 he was producer and script editor for a cycle of popular educational documentaries entitled “Man, That’s Science” and for the experimental film Recovering Industry (2016). In 2016 he was selected to become dean of Prague’s Film Academy (FAMU).

Nanouk Leopold

Nanouk Leopold, Dutch director, graduated from Rotterdam’s Academy of Fine Arts in 1992 and from the Dutch Film and Television Academy six years later. Her debut feature Îles flottantes screened in competition at the Rotterdam IFF in 2001. In 2005 Guernsey was selected for the Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes, while two other pictures, Wolfsbergen (2007) and Brownian Movement (2010), were invited to the festivals in Toronto and Berlin (Forum). It’s All So Quiet opened the Berlinale’s Panorama section in 2013. This year her sixth feature Cobain premiered in the Generation section at Berlin. Last year Leopold directed her first play From the Life of the Marionettes for Amsterdam’s TGA theater group.​

East of the West Jury

Peter Badač

Peter Badač, Slovak producer, is a graduate of Bratislava’s Academy of Performing Arts (VŠMU) and Prague’s Film Academy (FAMU), and he currently teaches at both. In 2010 he studied at Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF in Potsdam, Germany. He received a 2014 Fulbright scholarship and studied at Ohio University in Athens (USA). He founded BFILM, a production company based in Bratislava and Prague where he has produced the features Filthy and Freedomand the shorts Pandas and Untravel. A member of the Slovak Film and Television Academy and the European Film Academy, this year he represented Slovakia as a Producer on the Move at Cannes.

Iris Elezi

Iris Elezi, Albanian filmmaker, studied film criticism, anthropology and women’s studies before completing film production studies at NYU in 2001. Her feature debut Bota (2014) premiered in the East of the West competition at KVIFF, subsequently garnering eighteen international awards and representing Albania at the Academy Awards in 2016. Along with US archivist Regina Longo and cineaste Thomas Logoreci, Elezi co-founded the Albanian Cinema Project, an initiative to preserve Albania’s film heritage. As of October 2017 she is the director of Albania’s Central State Film Archive.

Myriam Sassine

Myriam Sassine, Lebanese producer, majored in audiovisual studies at the Lebanese Academy of Fine Arts (ALBA) and received a master’s in cinema research from the IESAV Institute at Beirut’s Saint Joseph University. She worked in development for Lucky Monkey Pictures (USA) and Abbout Productions (Lebanon). In 2013 she began producing both dramas and documentaries for Abbout Productions. She is the COO of Schortcut Films, a firm dedicated to coproducing international features. Sassine cooperated on setting up the Maskoon Fantastic Film Festival, the first modern genre film festival in the Middle East, and serves as its executive director.

Dounia Sichov

Dounia Sichov, actor, editor, and producer, was born in Paris as a stateless refugee. She has appeared in the movies of Catherine Breillat, Mikhaël Hers, Denis Côté, and Abel Ferrara. She has edited the work of Andrew Steggall (Departure), Mantas Kvedaravičius (Mariupolis), and Sharunas Bartas (Frost). Her company The Addiction produced Abel Ferrara’s Alive in France and Denis Côté’s A Skin So Soft (this year at KVIFF). She is currently directing a documentary about the history of transgender identity and producing Jonathan Caouette’s latest picture.

Andrei Tănăsescu

Andrei Tănăsescu, festival programmer and curator, is based in Toronto and Bucharest. After getting a degree in film studies from the University of Toronto, he co-founded the Romanian Film Festival Toronto. He completed a master’s degree in literature at the University of St Andrews in Scotland with a thesis on Gilles Deleuze and Romanian cinema. Since 2010 he has been part of the programming team at the Toronto IFF, as well as a regular collaborator with the Berlinale, the Bucharest International Experimental FF, and Bucharest’s American Independent FF.

Documentary Film Jury

Raúl Camargo

Raúl Camargo, Chilean festival programmer and professor, joined the programming team of the FICValdivia festival in 2007, becoming its artistic delegate three years later and its director in 2014. He has written articles for respected periodicals, including La FugaFuera de CampoOtros Cines, and Hambre Cine. He contributed to the work El novísimo cine chileno (2011) and is at present working on his first solo book, focusing on the affiliations and changes in perspective between Latin American films from the last century to the current one. He lectures in film history at a number of Chilean universities.

Mohamed Siam

Siam, film director, has received grants from Sundance, World Cinema Fund, CNC, and Doha Film Institute, among others. His pictures have been presented at IFFs in New York, Karlovy Vary, and Nyon, and he was awarded Best Cinematography at the Journées Cinematographiques de Carthage festival. His latest feature documentary Amal, included in the KVIFF program this year, was selected to compete at the 2017 IDFA and opened the festival to boot. Two years ago his movie Whose Country? screened in the documentary competition at KVIFF. Siam is an alumnus of many prestigious film institutions, such as Sundance Labs, IDFA Academy, La Fémis, and La Fabrique des Cinémas du Monde in Cannes.

Diana Tabakov

Diana Tabakov, head of acquisitions and film programming, works for Doc Alliance Films, an international VOD platform that brings together seven key European documentary film festivals (CPH:DOX, DOK Leipzig, FIDMarseille, Jihlava IDFF, Docs Against Gravity FF, Visions du Réel, Doclisboa). She studied philosophy and sociology at Charles University in Prague and documentary film at University of the Arts London. In the UK she worked at various film festivals, including Sheffield Doc/Fest where she was involved in film selection.

Nonstatutory Juries:


René Marx

Marita Nyrhinen

Alejandra Trelles

Ecumenical Jury

Michael Otřísal

Milja Radovic

David Sipoš


Stefan Dobroiu

Natascha Drubek

Nenad Dukić

Europa Cinemas Label Jury

Daira Āboliņa

Simon Blaas

Balázs Kalmanovits

Jan Makosch



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About Karlovy Vary International Film Festival

Karlovy Vary IFF is the most significant int`l festival, recognized by FIAPF, in the Central and Eastern Europe. Apart from the competitions it brings the unique opportunity to see the newest production and works in progress from the C.E. Europe.

Karlovy Vary

Czech Republic

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