Your guide to brand new documentary films in progress from Central and Eastern Europe, a region with a long documentary tradition and a range of remarkable and creative filmmakers who have emerged in recent years. Directors and producers of the selected feature-length documentaries introduce their projects during eight-minute presentations.

DOCU TALENTS FROM THE EAST / 14th Edition / Sarajevo FF

August 15, 2018, 3 – 5 pm, Hotel Europe, Vladislava Skarića 5, Sarajevo


CONTACT / Jarmila Outratová / Head of Industry Office /


Eligible projects
Mid-length or feature-length documentary projects at the production or post-production stage with expected premiere between September 2018 and August 2019.

Eligible countries
Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Serbia, Ukraine

Docu Talent Award
The most promising project received the Docu Talent Award in cooperation with Current Time TV. The award is accompanied by a financial prize in the amount of 5,000 USD.

» Natalia Arshavskaya, acquisitions, Current Time TV, Czech Republic
» Martichka Bozhilova, producer, Agitprop, Bulgaria
» Carine Chichkowsky, producer, Survivance, France
» Marek Hovorka, festival director, Ji.hlava IDFF, Czech Republic
» Tue Steen Müller, film critic, Filmkommentaren, Denmark

» Docu Talent Awards 2018 went to My Granny from Mars and Birthday. See the press release HERE.

One-to-one meetings
Presentation was followed by one-to-one meetings with these experts:

» Aleksandar Govedarica, sales agent, Syndicado Inc. (Canada)
» Marek Hovorka, festival director, Ji.hlava IDFF (Czech Republic)
» Nevena Milašinović, sales agent, Taskovski Films Ltd. (United Kingdom)
» Katriel Schory, Producer and Executive Director of the Israel Film Fund (Israel)



Since 2005, Docu Talents has been a launch pad for a number of documentaries, including Rabbit a la Berlin, Blind Loves, Matchmaking Mayor, The Mosquito Problem and Other Stories, Cooking History, René, FortressPipelineDaniels´s WorldUnder the Sun, FC Roma, Close Relations and The Road Movie.

Each year, festival advisors, distributors, buyers and local as well as international journalists are invited to attend the event. 10 selected projects are presented by the directors and producers in eight-minute presentations, including three-minute trailers. The presentations will be followed by an informal cocktail party and by one-to-one meetings of the presenters with sales agents and festival representatives.

Documentary projects are selected by representatives of the Ji.hlava IDFF.


Selected Docu Talents from the East projects 2018


Director: Aleksandar Mihalkovich
Film length: 72 min
Country: Belarus, Ukraine
Producer: Volia Chajkouskaja
Director of photography: Sergej Kanapljanik
Stage of development: post-production
Estimated date of premiere: November 2018


An old Ukrainian woman is trapped in Crimea, caught between Russia and Ukraine. The film shows how political events affect the life of an ordinary person, a grandmother. Faced with social isolation and loneliness, Babushka has to decide – whether to stay or go.

Director's biography
Aleksandar Mihalkovich is based in Minsk, Belarus. He works on personal long-term filmmaking and photography projects. Aleksandar has several completed short films. Babushka will be his feature-length debut. He has a Master’s in Documentary film Directing from DocNomads (2016).

Producer: Volia Films
» Zalataya Horka 11-38, Minsk, Belarus
» / +375 297 168 171
Volia Films is a production company based in Minsk, Belarus and Tallinn, Estonia. It focuses on producing auteur documentaries with an experimental and creative background. Filmography: The Road Movie (2016) by dir. Dmitrii Kalashnikov, a film edited from dashboardcam videos shot from all over Russia, selected for IDFA First Appearance Competition; Test-730 (2016) by dir. Daria Korol about pots-graduation assignments in Belarus.

Ad Günü

Director: Hilal Bajdarov
Film length: 63 min
Country: Azerbaijan
Producer: Hilal Bajdarov
Director of photography: Hilal Bajdarov
Stage of development: Finished
Estimated date of premiere: October 2018


It is the birthday of a lonely woman (my mother). Her husband died years ago, and her sons abandoned her. She expects only a simple telephone call, but nobody phones. She makes special meals, but nobody visits. She prays all day, but they are not heard.

Director's biography: 
Hilal Baydarov was born in Baku in 1987. In high school, he won national mathematical Olympiads in 2004 and 2005, and at university he led the national informatics Olympiad team in 2011. He earned an M.Sc in computer science in 2013 and went on to study film directing at film.factory in Sarajevo (led by Hungarian director Béla Tarr) in 2014–2015. His first feature film was Hills Without Names (2018). Birthday (2018) is his first documentary film.

Producer: Ucqar Film
» Cavadkhan 1 / 9 MKR / Baku, Azerbaijan
» / +9942725803
Founded in 2017, Ucqar Film focuses on independent cinema. Knowing the difficulty of making films, it helps from the earliest stages of filmmaking right to the last step.

Boy of War

Director: Cyprien Clément-Delmas, Igor Kosenko
Film length: 80 min
Country: Germany, Czech Republic
Producer: Fabian Driehorst
Director of photography: Ivan Castiñeiras
Stage of development: Post-Production
Estimated date of premiere: October 2018


"Why are you here? Are you mentally sick? Do you want to kill people?" the Ukrainian commander asks Artiom in the recruiting interview in Mariupol. Artiom is 18 and enthusiastic about weapons. He plays war games with his friends at abandoned sites. He considers himself an expert in combat and lives in a bubble that romanticizes war. Artiom believes he is ready to be an elite soldier. But the day he announces he will prove himself by joining the volunteer army fighting Pro-Russian separatists has less effect than he hopes: his friends and family see him as a dreamer.

Directors’ biography:
Cyprien Clément-Delmas and Igor Kosenko met at the ESCAC film school in Spain and have worked on several projects together. 
Cyprien works as photographer and filmmaker and has made several short films and music videos. He also works regularly on social projects, such as “Audiovisuales sin Fronteras” for prisoners or teaching photography to young students in the township of Thokoza outside of Johannesburg.
Igor has been working mainly as a cinematographer on feature films in Los Angeles since he finishing his studies at the American Film Institute in 2012, but he constantly travels to Europe and works in both continents.

Producer: Fabian&Fred
» Simon-von-Utrecht-Str. 85a, 20359 Hamburk, Germany
» / +494033442740, +4917624313418
The studio Fabian&Fred was founded in 2011 by Fabian Driehorst and Frédéric Schuld. They have produced a variety of author-driven experimental, documentary and animation films in Germany and in international co-productions. Their films have won numerous awards and been selected for festivals such as Berlinale, Chicago, Gijon, Hong Kong, Jihlava, Molodist, Oberhausen, Ottawa, San Francisco, Sheffield, Tokyo, Toronto and many others.

Zatancz ze mną tato

Director: Małgorzata Goździk
Film length: 60 min
Country: Poland
Producer: Magdalena Puzmujźniak
Director of photography: Magdalena Bojdo
Stage of development: production
Estimated date of premiere: March 2019


Closeness is essential in family relationships, no matter how old we are. Dance with me, Dad starts in a moment when closeness is lost. An adult daughter comes back to her family house after years of artistic studies. She wants to reconnect with her grumpy, pessimistic father. The film becomes a medium for her to look deeper into their relationship. Taking small steps, she tries to spend more time with her dad. They start doing home repairs together. After a while, everyday talks turn to honest conversations. Soon, the daughter will invite her dad to take classes together in dance – an activity they both have a natural gift for. Will the father approve her attempts?

Director's biography:
Director, painter, performer and traveller; graduate of the Academy of Fine Arts in Cracow, Poland. In her works Małgorzata focuses on meeting with people. For several years now, she has created dance performances in public spaces of European cities. These experiences, connected with her interest in psychology and movement, led her to work with the medium of film. As a result, she made a short documentary film The Cake as her diploma work, which was awarded at International Documentary Festival Okiem Młodych and continues its festival life.

Producer: Big Wave Films
» Dembowskiego 12/71, 02-784 Warsaw, Poland
» / +486 674 809 42
Big Wave Films is a Warsaw-based film production company created by Joanna Zielinska, a producer with over 10 years of experience in international co-productions, recently joined by Magdalena Puzmujźniak, a producer specializing in development. BWF focuses on documentary and fiction projects that bring talented filmmakers together, whose aim is to make films in a collaborative way. BWF is also open to co-productions and providing services.

Медена Земја

Director: Ljubomir Stefanov, Tamara Kotevska
Film length: 87 min
Country: Macedonia
Producer: Atanas Georgiev, Ljubomir Stefanov
Director of photography: Fejmi Daut, Samir Ljuma
Stage of development: Postproduction / Rough cut
Estimated date of premiere: January 2019


The last female beehunter in Europe must save the bees and return the natural balance in Honeyland, when, a family of nomadic beekeepers invade her land and threaten her livelihood. The film is an exploration of an observational indigenous visual narrative that deeply impacts our behaviour towards natural resources and the human condition.

Director's biography: 
Ljubo Stefanov
Born 1975 in Skopje. Over 20 years of experience in development and realisation of communication concepts (promotional, public awareness campaigns), production of documentaries and videos, generally devoted to projects related to environmental issues and human development. Working for clients such as UN agencies, Euronatur, Swisscontact, etc. Previous films: Documentary films The Noisy Neighbours (2005) and Lake of Apples (2017).
Tamara Kotevska
Born in 1993, in Prilep, Macedonia. She won the “BEST BALKAN FILM” international film award in official competition at the Tirana International Documentary Film Festival with her graduation documentary “STUDANTS” (49’). With the first professional documentary Lake of Apples (2017), supported by UNDP (as writer and co-director) she won the awards: Festival National Nature Namur in France; Prix de l'environnement, honourable mention at the International Film Festival Innsbruck; the Perseus award at T-Film festival in Czech Republic.

Producer: Trice Films 
» ul. Mihail Chakov 7a, 1/28, Skopje, Macedonia
Trice Films’ core activities focus on supporting innovative and creative ideas from artists working all around the world with a high emphasis on raising the production standard threshold. The expression of ideas and concepts using pure documentary form and unbiased storytelling is among the things that Trice Films will always encourage.

Jan Jedlička: barevné stopy krajiny

Director: Petr Záruba
Film length: 75 min
Country: Czech Republic
Producer: Alice Tabery
Director of photography: Miroslav Janek
Stage of development: production
Estimated date of premiere: July 2019


Jan Jedlička lost the landscape of his youth. The political situation after 1968 forced him to emigrate. He settled in Switzerland and found his artistic home and topic in the Maremma area of southern Tuscany. The film aims at mapping a 40-year-long journey during which this solitary artist searched for his own way to pronounce a landscape, to express it in its essence. A characteristic feature of Jedlička’s works is earthiness. He collects colourful rocks from which he produces pigments that he uses in his paintings. The pictured landscape thus becomes also the means (the pigments) of its image.

Director's biography:
Petr Zaruba graduated from the Faculty of Natural Sciences, Charles University and Department of Documentary Film at FAMU. He works as a film director, a cinematographer and a researcher of film archives (Burning Bush by A. Holland, Golden Sixties by M. Šulík, Dissidents by R. Zylberman, Operation Anthropoid by J. Buzková). In his previous films, he focused on artists Adriena Šimotová (Of the Near and the distant) and Jiří John (Fruits Falling of Itself) and topics related to nature and landscape (On the Edge). He directed also documentaries with historical themes (Sonderaktion Prag).

Producers: CINEPOINT s.r.o. – Alice Tabery (Czech Republic); Česká televize – TPS Petra Kubici (Czech Republic); Mammut Film – Ilaria Mallagutti (Italy); Box Productions – Elodie Brunner (Switzerland)
» CINEPOINT s.r.o., Pod Vinicemi, 710/13, 16500 Prague, Czech Republic
» / +420 732 883 260
An independent film production company founded in 1990. Alice Tabery joined CINEPOINT in 2011 in order to develop and produce creative documentaries and author films in international co-productions. Films: New Life by Adam Olha (2012), Eva Nová by Marko Škop (2015), Epidemic of Freedom by Tereza Reichová (2017). Other projects: Nomad Meets the City by Anji Clubb (in postprod.), August 1968: Reconstruction of an Occupation (in prod.) and others.

Maia – Portret cu mâini 1999 - 1905

Director: Alexandra Gulea
Film length: 80 min
Country: Romania
Producer: Ana Maria Pirvan
Director of photography: George Chiper
Stage of development: production
Estimated date of premiere: August 2019


My grandmother dies at the age of 93 in a building located on the Victory of Socialism boulevard and is born in the Macedonian mountains under the Ottoman Empire. Her journey as a Romanian woman stretches throughout the 20th century. The research of her particular destiny, which is decisive for my evolution on today's territory of Romania, in the context of the great historical events of the last century, constitutes a film that shows the dramas between great and "small" history – the individual dramas. Maia, is a tribute to those anonymous people, transformed in heroes by our love.

Director's biography:
Alexandra Gulea (1970, Bucharest, Romania) graduated cum laude in 1997 from the École nationale supérieure des Beaux Arts in Paris. After participating in several painting exhibitions, she studied documentary film at Munich Film School and since 1999 has directed documentary shorts and films and a feature film. She also worked as an editor on several movies.

Producer: Anchor Films
» Bucharest, Romania
» / +407 430 113 60
Anchor Films is a boutique production company based in Romania, with one office in Bucharest and another in Beirut, focused on talent development, and debut and established filmmakers with vision.

Crna svadba

Director: Dragan Nikolić
Film length: 80 min, 52 min
Country: Serbia
Producer: Jovana Nikolić
Director of photography: Dragan Nikolić
Stage of development: Development
Estimated date of premiere: October 2019

The Black Wedding is a film about facing loss, based on the story of three generations of women who were involved in the same black wedding – a secret marriage ritual between a dead and a living person.

Director's biography:
Director, screenwriter and DOP of documentary films The Undertaker (IDFA 2013), The Caviar Connection (IDFA 2008) and National Park (IDFA 2006). Co-screenwriter of Run Rabbit Run¨, which won first prize at the Cannes Film Festival (2003).

Producer: Prababa Production
» 153 Boul. Zoran Djindjic ap. 25, Belgrade, Serbia
» / +381 60 0250009
Prababa Production (orig. Prababa produkcija) is an independent production company, specialised in creative documentaries, and based in Belgrade, founded in 2007 by Jovana and Dragan Nikolić. Prababa Production has produced "The Undertaker" (2013), "The Caviar Connection" (2008) and "National Park" (2006). These films have in total been shown at 80 film festivals (incl. IDFA 2013, IDFA 2008, IDFA 2006) and received 18 awards.

La Pecora Rossa

Director: Sara Tirelli
Film length: 90 min
Country: Romania, Italy
Producer: Ioana Turcan
Director of photography: Sara Tirelli
Stage of development: Postproduction
Estimated date of premiere: October 2018


The Red Sheep portrays the life and work of Maria Vittoria Backhaus, a famous 70-year-old Italian fashion photographer and granddaughter of Mussolini. Maria Vittoria will rediscover her revolutionary story as she creates a new photographic endeavour focused on the most significant and personal periods of her life, strongly linked to the political and cultural history of Italy.

Director's biography:
Sara Tirelli (Italy) is a filmmaker and artist whose work lays along the border between art and cinema. She received her MFA in Visual Arts at the Faculty of Human Science at University of Bologna, Department of Art, Music and Performing Art in 2003 and in the same year she obtained her Filmmaker Diploma at Scuola Civica di Cinema e Nuovi Media, Politecnico di Milano. She is currently working on a VR installation within the Artist in Production Residency at Kostepidemin thanks to the Borås Museum of Modern Art, Iaspis, Kultur i Väst, Region Västra Götaland, and the Swedish Arts Grants Committee.

Producer: Madera Creation, Studioset Production
» I.D Mendeleev nr 2, Bucharest, Romania
» / +40742606326
Originated as a symbiosis of skilled freelancers and former studios such as Dementor, WeAreOm and more recently FrameBreed. STUDIOSET is a full house production company, or better put – an innovative convergence of attitudes, skills and crafts towards highly qualitative audio-visual works.

VIVA VIDEO, VIDEO VIVA: Československý obraz elektronický

Director: Adéla Komrzý
Film length: 75 min
Country: Czech Republic
Producer: Vít Komrzý
Director of photography: Jakub Halousek
Stage of development: production
Estimated date of premiere: May 2019


The film happens to be directed by the granddaughter of Radek Pilař, the well-known creator of beloved Czech children’s animated series such as Rumcajs, who was somewhat less well known as a pioneer of video art in Czechoslovakia. The documentary brushes the dust off of those old VHS cassettes to get a glimpse of early electronic images in our country and uncover the previously unmapped history of pre-revolution Czech video art. Decades later all “videists” (Skala, Vasulka and others) still share their enthusiasm, obsessive curiosity, and futuristic visions about the use of new technologies for artistic expression.

Director's biography:
Adéla Komrzý (1992) first studied the History of Art at Charles University before switching to study documentary film directing at FAMU. She’s currently on an internship at Filmuniversitaet Konrad Wolf in Babelsberg (directing). Her latest feature film “Teaching war” (68min), a BA project, was produced in cooperation with prominent Czech documentarists Vít Klusák and Filip Remunda (Hypermarket Film), Czech Television and FAMU. Her film was featured at international film festivals in Europe and Russia. In 2018 she was selected to participate in Berlinale Talents.

Producer: Universal Production Partners
» Žitomírská 7/489, 101 00 Prague 10, Czech Republic
» / +420 602 231 942
Universal Production Partners was established in 1994 and has since become one of the largest Visual Effects and Post Production Houses in mainland Europe, with offices in Prague and Budapest. Currently, UPP offers complex Visual Effects and Postproduction services for completing top-quality feature films, television projects, commercials and videos all at one convenient location.