The first screening of the Cannes selected film by Mina Mileva and Vesela Kazakova will be on the Sofia Summer Fest's film screen
This September the remarkable directors and producers' duo Vesela Kazakova and Mina Mileva will lead the prestigious „Giornatte degli autori“'s jury, part of the oldest film festival in the world - Venice Film Festival. Right after that they will present in person their latest film „Women Do Cry“ in front of the 25th Sofia Film Festival's audience - this event will be part of the open-air festival screenings at the Sofia Summer Fest's territory.
An exceptional success for Bulgarian cinema was the participation of „Women Do Cry“ in Cannes' „Un Certain Regard“competition programme and according to the Screen International's ranking, composed according to the critics' oppinion, the Bulgarian-French co-production was among the six most popular films in Cannes 2021, and the main characters - Sonja (Maria Bakalova) and Lora (Ralitsa Stoyanova) were published on the cover of "Le film francais".
„Women Do Cry“ tells the stories of five women from an average Bulgarian family, who are trying to defend themselves in a country torn by homophobia and prejudices. A mother stork is shot down from a chimney. A woman suffering from postnatal depression nearly jumps off a balcony. A girl has to deal with the stigma of HIV. A mother looks for magic in the lunar calendar. Fragility and absurdity in this contemporary Bulgarian family are set against the backdrop of violent anti gender-equality protests.
The roles in the film are entrusted to Maria Bakalova, Ralitsa Stoyanova, Katia Kazakova, Bilyana Kazakova, Vesela Kazakova, Iossif Surchadzhiev, Rositsa Gevrenova, Diana Spasova, Dobriela Popova. The script was made by Bilyana and Vesela Kazakovi and Mina Mileva, the cinematographer is Dimitar Kostov, and the producers are the companies „Activist 38“ and „Ici et La productions“, represented by Christophe Bruncher, who is also one of the producers of „Cat in the Wall“. Mina Mileva draws attention to the fact that his participation gives them „security and confidence in the presentation of films on the world stage“. Olivier Père from Arte France Cinema is also a co-producer of „Women Do Cry“, and the film was made with the support of the Bulgarian National Film Center, ARTE France, EURIMAGES, Ile de France.
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Mina Mileva and Vesela Kazakova from the production company "Activist 38" created two documentaries, received controversially due to the political charge of the stories - "Uncle Tony, the three fools and DS" and "The beast is still alive", as the festival premiere of the second film was in the program of Sofia Film Fest, and the screening took place in the plenary hall of the former Party House - an emblematic move with a serious message. Mina and Vesela's debut feature film "Cat in the Wall" started at the Locarno competition in 2019 - nominated for the Golden Leopard Award, and in 2020 won the award for best Bulgarian feature film at Sofia Film Fest and was selected by the European Film Festival. Academy. He has participated in 5 A-category festivals. The film won the International Critics Award at the Warsaw Festival 2019, the Audience and Youth Jury Award at the Tarkovsky Mirror Festival in Russia, and the best debut at the 2019 Bulgarian National Golden Rose Festival.
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„Women & Hollywood“: Describe the film for us in your own words.
Mina & Vesela: A colorful piece of contemporary Bulgaria that captures the power, baldness, and beauty of women.
„Women & Hollywood“: What drew you to this story?
Mina & Vesela: As with our other films, it was the desire to unveil stuff swept under the carpet. We wanted to give voice to emotions locked deep inside for decades. The story was constructed fluidly, in the process of making this film itself, which was more like a physiological study than a film.
German psychologists claim that, generally, trauma can be dealt with only 25 years after traumatic events take place. It is a bit like Communism — only now, 30 years after the changes in Bulgaria, are people starting to discuss the past.
Despite the personal element in our film, we’re glad we managed to find a convincing structural frame.
…Mina and Vesela joked that they have a strictly regulated working process. Mileva started her career as an animator, working in Bulgaria and the U.K., so it makes sense that she’s responsible for the visuals. Meanwhile, Kazakova, an award-winning actress, is in charge of the sound. She said, “I need to hear the film. Mina’s the eye and I’m the ear.”
The duo has a similar division when it came to creating the screenplay. “I write and she plays in the middle of the room as if I am watching live theater,” laughed Mileva as Kazakova chimed in, “I verbally express myself fast, she writes it down.” But credit is also due to Kazakova’s twin, Biliana, who conceived the story by drawing on personal elements from her life. Biliana also wrote a first draft of the script that earned the Bulgarian subsidy...
Here's what is said in the invitation to Mina Mileva and Vesela Kazakova from the film festival in Venice, offering them to become the head of „Giornate degli Autori“'s jury for 2021:
Young, passionate and determined, showered with critical acclaim the world over, Vesela Kazakova and Mina Mileva are a formidable directing and producting duo that put Bulgaria in the international spotlight from 2013 to 2021.
„Mina Mileva and Vesela Kazakova are women, activists, feminists, and filmmakers, - declared „Giornate degli Autori“'s Artistic Director Gaia Furrer. - We are thrilled they accepted to lead the jury of „Giornate degli Autori“, because today more than ever we need both filmmaking and activism. We need people who can challenge boundaries through cinema, and open up new paths. In their work we have discovered a vital, daring mix of public and private, of individuality and collective rights, of form and substance. Mina and Vesela's cinema is empathetic, smart, provocative, angry, ironic, alive and deeply honest. A list of values that I hope will also apply to the films we have selected for this year's competition at „Giornate degli Autori“.
Do Not Miss the Bulgarian premiere of the film „Women Do Cry“ in 25th Sofia Film Festival's programme on September 15!
We wait for you at the open air cinema at Sofia Summer Fest's territory!
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София Филм Фест се осъществява с подкрепата на Столична община и е част от Календара на културните събития на София.
Основни съорганизатори и партньори са Министерството на културата, ИА „Национален филмов център“ и Програма „Творческа Европа МЕДИА“ на Европейския съюз.
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