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Cuaron made international waves with his 2001 film Y Tu Mama Tambien before going on to some of Hollywood’s biggest hits, including Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban and Children of Men. Last year’s Gravity won seven Academy Awards, including for best directing and best editing.
Russian director Andrei Konchalovsky will also receive a career tribute at the festival. The festival will showcase films from various phases of his career, including A Lover’s Romance and Maria’s Lovers, as well as the recent The Postman’s White Nights, which won the Silver Lion in Venice last year.
Kustendorf’s lineup will be heavy on selections from Venice, also showcasing Roy Andersson’s A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence, which picked up the Golden Lion, and Words with Gods, a selection of short films about religion. Kusturica premiered his short from the film at Kustendorf two years ago. Other films in the lineup include The Owners by Adilkhan Yerzhanov and Sunstroke by Nikita Mikhalkov.
Each year, Kustendorf brings in young directors from around the world to compete for the festival’s coveted gold, silver and bronze egg prizes. The festival’s shorts competitive program this year will have young directors competing from 15 countries, curated by Dunja Kusturica. The short film jury will consist of British Film Institute CEO Amanda Nevill, Mexican-American film producer Alex Garcia and French producer Claudie Ossard.
Unlike many festivals, the intimate format of Kustendorf allows film students to rub elbows with industry greats at Kusturica’s cozy Serbian village. The two-time Palm d’Or winner was inspired to build the village, which has become a popular tourist attraction, after his 2004 film Life is a Miracle. Every evening, festivalgoers can enjoy a musical program following the film screenings.
This year’s lineup includes blues musician Ana Popovic, Russian cellist Alena Baeva, Romanian folk group Taraf de Haidouks and Moldovian trumpet player Adam Stinga.
The 8th edition of the Kustendorf Film and Music Festival runs Jan. 21-26.
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