This year’s Febiofest will be kicked off with a difference this year, as organisers announce they have changed the opening ceremony program to support Ukraine.
A special screening of The Voice of the Young Ukraine will be free and available to the general public, and support is being initiated throughout the festival for the colleagues working amidst the turbulent events in Kiev and Odessa.
As part of its opening ceremony on March 20th including The Voice of the Young Ukrainian, at 8p.m. in Halls 1, 2, and 7. It’s comprised of films by students of the Kiev National University of Theatre, Cinema and Television of Karpenko-Kary. The collection of the work of the youngest Ukrainian film generation culminates in direct testimony to the Ukrainian revolution. Some of these filmmakers have ended up in prison. Two of them, director Alexander Scerbak and cameraman Mykyta Panisov, will be the guest of the screening together with director Michail Gerasimovic Ilyenko, who is also the creator of The One Who Has Passed Through the Fire, and Fucza, who has become one of the heroes of Maidan. “I didn’t want to just watch the news. I had to react. I want the Ukrainians filmmakers to feel our support,” explains the festival’s president, Fero Fenic, on why he initiated the special Ukrainian evening.
The guests of Febiofest also plan to visit some of their close ones, who are currently hospitalized in Prague with their injuries from Maidan. The screenings are free, with limited seating capacity of each hall.
The program director, Stefan Uhrik, is also one of the six festival directors who have addressed the colleagues in the European film industry with an appeal to support their Ukrainian colleagues, especially at festivals in Kiev and Odessa. “Dear directors, offer your film to your Ukrainian colleagues for free and go support Ukraine personally. Film institutes, please arrange guests and shipping of the film copies at your own expense,” says the appeal, among other things. Apart from Febiofest in Prague, the other festivals participating are IFF Warsaw, Helsinki, Tallinn, Sofia, and Cluj (Transylvania IFF).
The screenings of the Official Opening Films – Jim Jarmusch’s Only Lovers Left Alive and Andrzej Wajda’s Walesa: Man of Hope – remain by invitation only.
IFF Prague – Febiofest, March 20th – 28th, 2014, Cinestar Anděl