Introducing Sarajevo Film Festival’s Special Award for Promoting Gender Equality

Given the size and scope of the Sarajevo Film Festival programme, which showcases around 230 films each year, we want to put the spotlight on female filmmakers’ debuts. Although other Sarajevo Film Festival awards are linked to specific competition programmes covering the region of Southeast Europe*, films and directors eligible for the SPECIAL AWARD FOR PROMOTING GENDER EQUALITY are not limited to Competition strands and include other programmes and territories as well, provided that the film is the director’s first feature film. The selection will cross sections and genres (both fiction and documentary feature films are eligible). Films coming from following strands are eligible: Competition Programme – Feature Film, Competition Programme – Documentary Film, In Focus, Dealing with the Past and Kinoscope. This award is a continuation of the activities by which Sarajevo Film festival contributes to the establishment of equality in the film industry: The Sarajevo Film Festival is a signatory of the 5050X2020 Gender Parity Pledge which advocates equal possibilities for women in film industry. The pledge was signed at the 24th Sarajevo Film Festival in 2018. Because of its long term advocacy for gender parity and diversity in the film industry, the Sarajevo Film Festival had the privilege to host last year’s fifth Audentia award ceremony for the best female director, founded by Council of Europe’s Eurimages fund to promote gender equality in the European film industry. Moreover, in this year’s Competition Programme – Feature Film, out of 10 films, eight have been directed by women. In Competition Programme – Documentary Film out of 16 films, 6 have been directed by women. A separate three-member jury will screen all eligible films and the award will be presented at the official Sarajevo Film Festival Award Ceremony. The award pool is set to 7500 euros. 

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