The Council of Europe has become the partner of the Sarajevo Film Festival and sponsor of the 'Heart of Sarajevo' award for the best feature film.

Since 1988, the European Support Fund for the Co-production and Distribution of Creative Cinematographic and Audiovisual Works, or Eurimages, has worked within the Council of Europe to promote the European film industry by encouraging the production and distribution of films and fostering co-operation between professionals. As of 2005, Bosnia and Herzegovina has also been a member of Eurimages.

Being very active in South-Eastern Europe, the Council of Europe considers that the Sarajevo Film Festival, as a meeting point of the regional film industry, is a natural choice for promoting its activities, recognising mutual goals to educate people through films, to support artistic creation and the freedom of expression through film making, and to promote its values of cultural diversity and mutual respect.

The Council of Europe also recognises that directors from South-Eastern Europe whose films are selected for the Sarajevo Film Festival, have been choosing themes that correspond largely to the Council of Europe's values, most dealing with social commentary and human rights.