23 - 31 AUGUST 2013, PRIZREN


Cold is not an issue when you’re warmheartedly welcomed!


by: Eroll Bilibani

While sitting at the Istanbul airport and waiting for my connection flight back home, I used this time to reflect on the experiences from this years edition of Tampere Film Festival that was held in Tampere, Finland from 6-10 March 2013.

The first thing that comes to my mind when thinking about the way the festival is managed, is its diversity and a remarkable energy of the organizers and their devoted staff. As our team there went in a large group, Aliriza, Nita and myself apportioned the meetings and went separately to screenings in order to benefit as much as possible from the entire event.

It is my first time there, which gave me a chance to meet some good old friends and make few new ones.

The evening of arrival to the bus station and searching for our hotel, while hauling our luggage was an experience on its own. Later we get instructions from Marika from the guest service on how to get there, and once we are settled in the cozy hotel, Mikko Sorrela helps us with finding the “after-the-screening-places”. We go to Telakka and meet Ujkan Hysaj, young Kosovar filmmaker, whose short film “Kolona” is part of the international competition. Later, a large group of very happy and relaxed people arrive, I see familiar faces: Jing, Jukka-Pekka, Karen, Alexei are all there. At this point we realize to have missed the famouTampere Film Festival Sauna Party!

I really have to admit that everything was running like a well-oiled machine. Under the dedicated direction of Jukka-Pekla Laakso and Juhani Alanen, the entire festival events ran smoothly. TFF Staff were very efficient, always smiling and willing to assist, even if they had to walk you personally from one place to the other.

The next day starts really early, and the meeting point is the market and the guest centre, as a point where guests would come to check their emails, watch films on the market computers, or simply get their share of screening tickets for the day. Its also a place where everyone is proudly display their work, including us!

We carried a large number of last year DokuFest catalogues and DVDs of the Human Rights Film Factory with six short documentaries by young Kosovar filmmakers.

At the guest centre I first met with John Canciani from Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur, we chat and decide to get photographed together, and have our photo placed later on the Who is Who board. The mingling and short meetings start, and you get carried away only to realize that its time to go to the cinema and attend the screenings you got tickets for.

When it comes to program, I was lucky to attend screenings of some of the awarded films. The Argentinian Asesinato en Junìn (Murder in Junín) by Andrew Sala got the best fiction category prize, while Anar miveh behesht as (Pomegranate Fruit Paradise), an Iranian fiction by Teymour Ghader got the diploma of merit. The very same program screened Polish film Matka (Mother) by Lukasz Ostalski that won the audience award for Best International Film.

In addition to national & international competitions, the Main Program of Tampere Film Festival offers a wide variety of special programmes. This year the audience of Tampere Film Festival undertook a cinematic journey with the focus on the Philippines and China experience, but also bringing some flavours from India and Vietnam.

The main prizewinners are nominated to EFA and Academy Award and selection is done carefully making all screenings really interesting and diverse.

Screenings I attended gave you the flavour of great experimental films. It was programed very carefully and the flow of the films would take you to this great journey of emotions, as they appear on the cover of the catalogue and program.

There is one particular event that I really enjoyed, was the Night of Trash! Staged at Klubi & Pakkahuone in Tullikamari great atmosphere (photo included), amazing people and cool program of films.

Overall, a great Festival, recommended to all film-lovers!

It is amazing how cold doesnt become an issue when you are warmheartedly welcomed!

And this is how you get welcomed to Tampere Film Festival.

the Night of Trash! Staged at Klubi & Pakkahuone in Tullikamari