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Miljen Kljaković Kreka: The Belgrade Victor Award is the Crown of My Past Work

On the ninth day of the 49th International Film Festival - FEST, organized by the Belgrade Festivals Centre - CEBEF, on Saturday, May 15, set designer Miljen Kljaković Kreka, winner of the Belgrade Victor honorary festival award, Slobodan Ivetić, director of the documentary ‘Kreka: Lovac na snove’ (Kreka: Dreamcatcher) which will be shown at the closing ceremony of the Festival, as well as the film's producer Jadranka Blanuša spoke at the press conference.   

Miljen Kljaković Kreka spoke about what the awards mean to him: ‘There have been so many of them in my life, yet this award is special. In a way, it represents the crown of my past work. It awakens sentimental moments in me in relation to FEST as well. I remember that almost 50 years ago, from the balcony of the Trade Union Hall, I watched the first screenings and the opening of FEST. At that time, I did not even dream that I would become a filmmaker, and now, after so many years, I am receiving an award from that same festival. That is wonderful.’

Kreka then referred to the documentary about him and his work: ‘I watched it in different phases. It is very interesting, and it is good that one such film will remain as a legacy and a story about film scenography, which unfortunately has never been brought to the fore, but has always been drawn to the margins of every film. And it is a very important element and an important factor.’

One of the greatest scenographies that Miljen Kljaković Kreka did in his career was for the film of the legendary Iranian director Majid Majidi about the Prophet Muhammad. ‘It is one of the rare scenographies that has practically remained. These were replicas of entire cities, Mecca and Medina from the 6th and 7th centuries, and it would have been a pity if that decor had disappeared. It now serves as a tourist attraction in Iran and behind it stands the Iranian government, which supported the film as well. I am glad that, after eight years, I found everything as it was before,’ Kljaković recalled.

Slobodan Ivetić, the director of the film, said about his work on the film: ‘We have known each other for more than 20 years, thus I am very well acquainted with his work. We had dozens of hours of material, his private videos, and we had to choose the most interesting ones that would be in the function of the story. That was important to me - that the story has its classic dramaturgical beginning and end. I patiently collected and merged the materials so that we could get a picture of Kreka, his talent, work, and monumental scenographies.’  

Jadranka Blanuša, the producer of this film, described what fascinates her most about Miljen Kljaković Kreka: ‘I have always been intrigued by this miraculous talent, this responsible man. You see a perfectionist, who creates everything from scratch. Then you see him in a relaxed jam with Johnny Depp. He easily makes acquaintances and friendships.’

The film ‘Kreka: Lovac na snove’ will be premiered at the closing ceremony of FEST on May 16 at 7 p.m. in the Kombank Hall, when the Belgrade Victor Honorary Festival Award for Outstanding Contribution to Film Art will be presented to Miljen Kljaković Kreka. On that occasion, the Festival awards in the Main Competition Programme and the FEST Focus selection, the Nebojsa Djukelic Award for Best Regional Film, as well as the Milutin Colic Daily Newspaper Politika Award for Best Serbian Film will be presented.