The 13th edition of When East Meets West came to an end after three intense full days of pitching sessions, works in progress, labs, talks, meetings and hugs. During the closing award ceremony, the WEMW Co-Production Forum Jury consisting of Darya Bassel (Moon Man), Pierre Dallois (Ciclic Centre-Val de Loire), Gordan Matic (Film Center Serbia) and Elma Tataragic (Sarajevo IFF) announced the three top winners of this year.
The debut feature “Still Life with Ghosts” by Enrique Buleo received the Film Center Serbia Award (a € 5.000 prize). The film is produced by Quatre Films (Spain) and Ikki Films (France) and tells of ghosts and humans in a small village in rural Spain who do whatever they can to resolve their problems and have no qualms about relying on each other to do so.
The documentary “It’s Not a Full Picture” by Maryna Stepanska received the € 5.000 cash prize Ciclic WEMW Award (granted by the French Centre-Val de Loire Region). The film is produced by JS Films (Ukraine) and follows some Ukrainian filmmakers whose lives changed entirely with the Russian war. Some are at the frontline, some volunteering or trying to take care of their kids, but everybody is reflecting on the picture that the war reveals.
The documentary “2m2” by Volkan Uce received the new ArteVideo Co-Production Award (a € 5,000 prize). The film is produced by Menuetto Film (Belgium) and reflects on the fundamental choice after a life between two countries and two cultures: the 2 square metres of soil where a Turkish immigrant in Belgium wants to be buried.
Thanks to the partnership with a large network of international training programmes and markets, several other major awards were announced: the Spanish director Carol Rodríguez Colás, selected at WEMW with her project “The Gang” (produced by Maria Carla del Rio Betancourt, Fasten Films), was awarded the EWA Network’s I HAVE A DREAM Award for Equality & Inclusion of the value of € 1.000 ; whilst Ukrainian producer Julia Sinkevych (JS Film), selected at WEMW with the project “It’s Not a Full Picture” was awarded a scholarship to attend the EAVE Producers Workshop; the Armenian director Inna Sahakyan received the DAE Talent Development prize, in cooperation with the EFM; Tekla Machavariani, producer of “Milk and Honey” (Nushi Film, Georgia), and Anna Khazaradze and Nino Chichua, producers of “9 Month Contract” (1991 Productions, Georgia), will receive free badges for the Cannes Marché du Film Producers’ Network. The Pop Up Film Residency Award was given to Suad Gara, director of “Hotel Diana” (Astar Productions, Azerbaijan) and the new #DocsConnect Taskovski Training Award was assigned to the documentary “(Not) Just a Matter of Time” directed by Daniela Reyes Gutiérrez and produced by Martha Ceballos (Medio de Contención Producciones, Colombia).
On to the two WEMW works in progress sections targeting films at the post-production stage: the 2023 international jury of Last Stop Trieste, composed of Martina Droandi (Autlook Film Sales), Tereza Keilova (HBO Europe) and Freddy Olsson (Göteborg IFF), assigned the HBO Europe Award (a € 1,000 cash prize) to A Day, 365 hours, the Turkish/Croatian project by director Eylem Kaftan and producer Zeynep Koray (ZKF, Turkey and CAF, Turkey, Croatia).
This year the international jury of This is IT, the work in progress section dedicated to films co-produced with Italy or produced by the WEMW spotlight territories, was composed by Remi Bigot (Semaine de la Critique), Vincenzo Bugno (Berlinale World Cinema Fund/TFL), Wouter Jansen (Square Eyes) and Giancarlo Chetta (Laser Film). The jury assigned the LASER Film Award to the Croatia, Italy, Slovenia co-production Fiume o Morte! by Igor Bezinović.
Regarding First Cut+, the works in progress targeting feature films that previously took part in a First Cut Lab workshop, the international jury consisting of Esra Demirkiran (TRT), Stefan Ivančić (Locarno Film Festival) and Daniel Vadocky (Pluto Films) assigned the TRT Prize, worth € 5.000, to My Magical World by Elvin Adigozel (Azerbaijan).
Last but not least, the Italy-Baltic Development Awards for Co-Production, delivered three cash prizes for a total award of € 30,000 granted by the Ministero della Cultura (MiC), Estonian Film Institute, Lithuanian Film Centre and National Film Centre of Latvia. The Italian majority awarded the project Altrove – Elsewhere, directed by Iacopo Di Girolamo, produced by the Italian company Teleaut Produzioni, while the Estonian company Film Tower was awarded with € 15.000.
Two Baltic majority co-productions received € 7.500 each: the project The Child, directed by Linda Olte and co-developed by Latvian company Trickster Pictures, Italian company Albolina and Lithuanian company Afterschool Pictures; and the project “Concrete music”, the musical directed by Saulius Baradinskas and co-developed by Lithuanian company Viktorijos filmai and Italian company Lumen Films.
The first full onsite edition of WEMW after the pandemic context drew to a close with a slate of unexpected numbers: 750 registered participants from over 50 countries, of which over 500 joined us on-site while more than 200 online. Over 700 scheduled individual meetings – both physical and digital – with more than 100 decision makers and 20 business angels.
WEMW CO-PRODUCTION FORUM AWARDS
Film Center Serbia Development Award
Still Life with Ghosts
by Enrique Buleo (Spain)
Quatre Films (Spain), Ikki Films (France)
Ciclic WEMW Award
It’s Not a Full Picture
by Maryna Stepanska
JS Films (Ukraine)
ArteVideo Co-Production Award
by Volkan Uce
Menuetto Film (Belgium)
EWA Network’s I HAVE A DREAM Award for Equality & Inclusion
Carol Rodríguez Colás (Fasten Films, Spain)
EAVE Producers Workshop scholarship
Julia Sinkevych (JS Film, Ukraine)
It’s not a Full Picture
#DocsConnect Taskovski Training Award
Daniela Reyes Gutiérrez & Martha Ceballos (Medio de Contención Producciones, Colombia)
(Not) Just a Matter of Time
DAE Talent Development prize, in cooperation with the EFM
Inna Sahakyan (Bars Media, Armenia)
Shakespeare Goes Armenia
Marché du Film Producers Network
Tekla Machavariani (Nushi Film, Georgia)
Milk and Honey
Anna Khazaradze and Nino Chichua (1991 Productions, Georgia)
9 Month Contract
Pop Up Film Residency Award
Suad Gara (Astar Productions, Azerbaijan)
LAST STOP TRIESTE
HBO Europe Award
A Day, 365 hours
by Eylem Kaftan
ZKF (Turkey), CAF (Turkey, Croatia)
THIS IS IT
This Is IT Laser Film Award
Fiume o Morte!
by Igor Bezinović
Restart (Croatia), Videomante (Italy), Nosorogi (Slovenia)
ITALY-BALTIC CO-DEVELOPMENT AWARDS
Altrove – Elsewhere
by Iacopo Di Girolamo
Teleaut Produzioni (Italy), Film Tower (Estonia)
by Linda Olte
Trickster Pictures (Latvia), Albolina (Italy), Afterschool Pictures (Lithuania)
by Saulius Baradinskas
Viktorijos filmai (Lithuania), Lumen Films (Italy)