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Croatian Audiovisual Centre΄s annual report on the 2014 activities
30 December 2014
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The Croatian Audiovisual Centre (HAVC), released its annual report on 2014΄s activities, "2014 in Croatian Film World: Export, Festival Success Stories and Development of Independent Cinema Network".

Halima΄s Path by Arsen Ostojic

Film Production in 2014

Thirteen Croatian feature fiction films were completed and screened, eight of which benefited from the Centre’s funds. Eleven feature documentary films were completed and screened, as well as one feature experimental fiction and 72 shorts (animated, documentary, experimental and fiction).

Pursuant to the Public Call for Stimulation of Audiovisual Creative Activity in 2014, decisions on co-funding 38 entries were reached, eight of which feature narratives and nine feature documentaries. Artistic advisors proposed these decision to the Croatian Audiovisual Council, convinced that most selected projects have a potential for a successful cinema and festival life. The selected projects mainly include young filmmakers, four co-funded feature fiction films are debuts, four will be directed by women, and one is intended for younger audiences. In different creative categories (development and production), decisions were made to co-finance projects in the amount of HRK 30,064,824.00. Early in 2015, the decision-making process for the 2014 public call second deadline is taking place.

Most of the approved projects ran for production, having already completed all the development stages stimulated by HAVC. The idea to support the projects in all the steps, from the idea to distribution, has become the standard practice. The script development category this year supported 34 projects (18 documentary, 13 fiction, 3 animated), and the project development category supported 17 projects (10 documentary, 7 fiction).

The decisions were also reached on the financing of TV script and project development: the first deadline decided on a total of 20 TV scripts (18 serials and 2 individual) and 15 projects (14 serial and 1 individual), and the second deadline on a total of 15 scripts (13 serial and 2 individual) and 6 projects (for TV serials). These projects were presented at two TV markets to artistic advisor Robert Knjaz and Croatian broadcasters’ editors and producers.

Croatian Film Distribution

By 15 December 2014, Croatian films have sold 99,636 theatre tickets. So far the best rates were scored by the third sequel of the story of Koko, Love or Death, directed by Daniel Kušan, produced by Kinorama and distributed by 2i Film, still in distribution, with 36.738 viewers. The second place, with 23,378 viewers went to the film Handymen, directed by Dalibor Matanić, and the third is Number 55, directed by Kristijan Milić, still listed in theatres, seen by this date by 14,136 viewers.

These Are The Rules by Ognjen Svilicic

International Festival Success

This year Croatian cinema has been more than ever before present at the most important world festivals. These Are the Rules, written and directed by Ognjen Sviličić, won the best actor award in the Horizons section of the Venice Film Festival, followed by the best director award in Warsaw, and Grand Prix in Stockholm and Les Arcs. The short German/Croatian film The Chicken by Una Gunjak (a Sarajevo-born London-based filmmaker), co-produced by Siniša Juričić (Nukleus) has won this year’s EFA for best European short film (60 festivals, 22 awards). The Reaper by Zvonimir Jurić began its festival tour in Toronto’s official competition, followed by Thessaloniki. Cure – The Life of Another by Andrea Štaka and Love Island by Jasmila Žbanić premiered in Locarno. Vis-À-Vis by Nevio Marasović toured 20 international film festivals. Halima’s Path by Arsen A. Ostojić continued its successful festival circuit, and in addition to three previous awards won a total of 31 festival prizes in 2014.

Autofocus, the ironic observational documentary by Boris Poljak, won its first award in Karlovy Vary in the short film category. The feature-length Mitch – the Diary of Schizophrenic Patient won a prize at MID fest in Marseille. Tatjana Božić’s Happily Ever After, On Shaky Ground by Sonja Tarokić, and Mother Europe by Petra Seliškar were shown this year in Rotterdam. Naked Island, Tiha Gudac’s creative project, won the Golden Heart of Sarajevo (for documentary film). Velvet Terrorists, the Slovakian/Czech/Croatian documentary hit, participated in Berlinale’s FORUM section, and the Serbian/FYROM/Croatian/German co-production Monument to Michael Jackson by Darko Lungulov was shown in Karlovy Vary, and the Slovenian/Croatian Inferno in Pusan, Korea. David Lovrić’s animated film Breakdown was shown in Annecy, and this festival organised a stop-motion focus section screening the films Market by Ana Hušman, The Room by Ivana Jurić, The Tiniest by Tomislav Šoban, and Simulacra by Ivana Bošnjak and Thomas Johnson. Clermont-Ferrand screened the animated film Father by a group of authors, and Miran Miošić’s Hidden Talent. Dane Komljen’s Tiny Bird was shown in Spectrum Shorts category in Rotterdam. The Oberhausen Film Festival screened two Croatian films: The Tiniest by Tomislav Šoban and In the Name of the People by Dalibor Martinis. Petra Zlonoga’s Hunger was screened at the Hiroshima Film Festival.

Film Incentives and Screen Tourism Potential

In 2014, eight projects that applied for the incentive scheme earned the rebate right in the amount of 20 per cent of the total expense accrued in Croatia. These are international productions from France, Sweden, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Germany, USA and Switzerland. In 2014 their total expense amounted to nearly HRK 90 million (around € 11.5 million), which is more than the previous two years together. The expected return on the investment in these eight projects will amount to HRK 16.8 million (€ 2.2 million).

In addition to the globally popular HBO series Game of Thrones (season five), which is being filmed in Croatia for the third year now, the French high-budget TV serial The Borgias (season three) is shot in Croatia for Canal+, as well as the Swedish TV series The Lost Treasure of Aquila for SVT; BBC’s Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell; and NBC Universal’s DIG, an American serial due to be launched in March 2015. Besides high-profile TV serials, in 2014 Croatia served as the location for the Dutch/Croatian film Full Contact, directed by David Verbeek; the German TV film Winnetous Weiber directed by Dirk Regel, and fiction film Wait for Me, the Swiss/FYROM/Irish/Croatian co-production directed by Mitko Panov.

Velvet Terrorists by Peter Kerekes, Ivan Ostrochovský and Pavol Pekarcík


In 2014 the regular distribution of independent Croatian cinemas listed 35 Croatian feature fiction films and minority co-productions. Screenings in smaller towns contributed to their overall rates; for instance, Gangster of Love acquired most of its profit in independent cinemas.

This year we employed different methods of strengthening relationships between cinema operators, joining them in common initiatives, working on education and promotion of independent film programmes. These activities included charity screenings of The Brave Adventures of a Little Shoemaker and Hives, at more than 20 independent cinemas, and for the first time animation lovers from other towns and cities had a chance to enjoy a selection of films screened at Animafest.

Also, late in summer, the first congress of independent cinemas KIN-KONG took place in Zadar, organised by the Croatian Audiovisual Centre in association with Avvantura Film Festival – Filmforum Zadar Matchmaking with the support of the City of Zadar and Zadar County. The congress gathered the managers of independent Croatian cinemas, film industry representatives from relevant European organisations, all with the aim of networking and exchanging ideas. KIN-KONG also formally stimulated the cinema operators to join – in November the Independent Cinema Network was established, gathering 27 independent cinemas from 24 towns. 

The year ended with the second Short Film Marathon, including 29 independent cinemas across Croatia. The Marathon screened 66 titles with a total of 42 short Croatian films that successfully participated at local and international festivals. 

Source: Croatian Audiovisual Centre official site
  Cure - The Life of Another
  Halima`s Path
  Gangster of Love
  Love Island
  Velvet Terrorists
  Monument to Michael Jackson
  Mother Europe
  Happily Ever After
  The Brave Adventures of a Little Shoemaker
  Number 55
  The Reaper
  These Are the Rules
  Naked Island
  Mitch – The Diary of a Schizophrenic Patient
  Dalibor Matanic
  Ognjen Svilicic
  Darko Lungulov
  Jasmila Zbanic
  Daniel Kušan
  Sinisa Juricic
  Arsen Anton Ostojic
  Boris Poljak
  Tihana Lazovic
  Andrea Staka
  Zvonimir Juric
  Nevio Marasovic
  Sonja Tarokic
  Petra Seliskar
  Tatjana Bozic
  Kristijan Milic
  Kinorama Film Production
  Croatian Audiovisual Center (HAVC)
  Nukleus film d.o.o.
  An Overview of the (New)* Croatian Cinema
  Croatian Audiovisual Center Grants 2013
  Croatian and French Governments Signed the Co-production Agreement
  2014: A Balkan cinema year in numbers!
  Croatian Audiovisual Centre on Facebook
  Croatian Audiovisual Centre on Twitter
  Croatian Audiovisual Centre Official Site
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