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Dalibor Matanić: Love Can Prevail in the End

On the seventh day of the 49th International Film Festival - FEST, which is organized by the Belgrade Festivals Centre - CEBEF, on Thursday, May 13, the members of the cast and crew of the film ‘The Dawn’, ‘Life of a Mutt’ and ‘Jazavac pred sudom: With the Badger on Trial’ spoke at the press conference in the Kombank Hall.    

Dalibor Matanić, the director of the film ’The Dawn’, addressed those present at the conference via video: ‘When there was an attack on Capitol Hill in Washington - that is the kind of horror that I wanted to achieve in the film. The horror of the immediate and unknown future, and most of all the horror of repeating some mistakes, which would mean Nazism and fascism in these parts. We see how fragile the world is today. ’The Dawn’ is heading into a smooth, near future, with my film hope that things can change for the better. That love can prevail in the end.’

Tihana Lazović spoke about her role in the film: ‘Ika is a young mother whose child has disappeared, and she is searching for her son, but at the same time she is in search of herself. She fights her inner demons and ignores political extremism, and again there are those who divide us - perhaps in the film more than ever. However, above all, it is a story about family, about love, about forgiveness, and what that even means.’ The popular Croatian actress, who currently lives in Serbia, pointed out that this was actually the first screening of the film in physical space, and that she was looking forward to seeing live for the first time how the audience reacts to Matanić's film.

Tanja Brzaković, the director of the documentary-animated film ‘Life of a Mutt’, said about her personal attitude towards dogs: ‘First there was love. Then I adopted the first dog and got a second one. After that, I set out to make a film. While filming the first story, we came across the mother of five puppies. We could not leave them out in the cold and we tried to find them home. One of them, Seka, stayed with us.’ About the way the film was conceived, she explained: ‘We just came across situations, tried to film them and then underline them dramaturgically. There was a concept of going by the seasons, because their life is conditioned by living outdoors. It was clear that we wanted to have situations from urban areas, as well as environments in which they were left to themselves, however, the situations happened during the filming itself.’

Mark Windon, the director of the film ‘Jazavac pred sudom: With the Badger on Trial’, revealed how he became interested in this important work of Serbian culture: ‘Daniel Kovačević invited me to see the theatrical version, and thus introduced me to the story. It was very interesting to me and universal enough, even though I am not from Serbia or the Balkans. I imagined how I could adapt it in a modern way. After that, I sat down with Daniel and Mihail Laptošević with the idea of turning the story into a film. The original plan was for everything to be low-budget and only for YouTube, yet the film grew and we decided that the judge should be a woman, and then we decided to have three women as judges. The film grew unintentionally, but in the right way.’  

On Friday, May 14, there will be four feature films on the FEST programme, whose cast and crew will bow to the audience after the screening. The premiere of Mark Windon's film ‘Jazavac pred sudom: With the Badger on Trial’ will take place at the Belgrade Youth Centre at 4:30 p.m., while the premiere of the domestic production ‘Loan Shark’ by Nemanja Ćeranić will be in the Kombank Hall at 4:30 p.m. as well. Before this screening, a short film ‘Spark’ by Luka Bursać will be shown. The Serbian premiere of Ivan Ikić's film ‘Oasis’ is scheduled for 7 p.m. in the Kombank Hall, while the audience will be able to watch the premiere of the film ‘The Spring Poem’ directed by Natalija Avramović at 7 p.m. at the Belgrade Youth Centre.