BH. FILM FESTIVAL
Association of Filmmakers of Bosnia and Herzegovina is the initiator, the founder and main organizer of the Festival of Films from Bosnia and Herzegovina, which takes place during Sarajevo Film Festival. This Festival has been initiated in 2003 when a major turn occurred in film production: after many years of a production silence 6 films were finalized: 3 features and 3 short films. This created the basis for a three-day event during 9th edition of Sarajevo Film Festival, which was the perfect platform for the promotion of BiH film, primarily because of the presence of its guests and film professionals. The spectators and the guests of the Festival recognized its significance and all screenings were sold out.
The festival was successfully organized in 2005, 2007 and 2009 and because of increasing number of short, animated, documentary and fiction film in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and because of the public interest (both local and international), it was obvious that the grounds for an annual event were created. For all the mentioned reasons, in July 2010, the festival also became one of the official programs of Sarajevo Film Festival and its fifth edition was held. In this edition 6 feature films were shown, but also 10 documentaries, 11 short and animated films, and the festival hosted over one hundred filmmakers from the entire country.
In 2011, BiH Film Festival has presented 63 BiH films. BiH film production in 2011 is noted for a record number of documentaries: 26 of them were screened at the Festival. In order to promote young filmmakers from Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Festival also screened 18 student films from Sarajevo Academy of Performing Arts, Sarajevo Film Academy and Banja Luka Academy of Arts. Festival also held several special screenings, including special screening of short films by Ivica Matić.
Festival held in July 2012 presented entire annual film production, but also a special program for Srebrenica Memorial Day. For the first time the student program was competitive and a three-member jury awarded student films with three awards: Best BH. Student film Award, Special Jury Award and Special Mention. Jury awarded student films in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 with the same three awards, and starting with 2014 this program screened also student films from Faculty of Drama and Film Arts from Bijeljina. Also, it is important to notice that last year’s festival screened record number of 76 BH films and this year’s edition screened 75 films.
The aim of the Festival remains the same: to promote filmmakers, directors, screenwriters, actors and other professionals from Bosnia and Herzegovina, and to encourage national film production and distribution. Through all these years, the BiH Film Festival was organized with the help of Sarajevo Film Festival and with support of Film Fund Sarajevo who become long term partners of the event recognizing the importance of the project.
The BiH Film Festival has also followed this development and growth of BiH cinema as it serves as a platform open to all BiH filmmakers. It connects young talents from Sarajevo, Banja Luka, Bijeljina, Tuzla, and it is also open to foreign productions about Bosnia and Herzegovina and to films by Bosnian authors living and working abroad.