Mark Cousins (1)

Source: Jenny Leask

Mark Cousins

UK-Irish director Mark Cousins will receive the honorary Heart of Sarajevo award at the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival this summer (August 11-18).

The festival will hold a special screening of Cousins’ 2022 documentary March On Rome, as part of its Dealing With The Past strand.

Cousins previously visited the city when it was under siege during the 1990s, alongside representatives from Edinburgh International Film Festival. They showed films in support of the residents of the city, at the Obala Art Centar cinema that became the birthplace of the festival.

The experience “showed me why movies matter”, says Cousins. “Most things I’ve done since have been influenced by those scary, inspiring weeks in 1994. Going back to Sarajevo for the first time, after 29 years, will open a dam of emotions for me.”

“I can still learn from the young man I was and, far more so, from the pioneering people in Sarajevo who understood that movies aren’t just a pastime. They are a crucial part of our lives. I’m so grateful.”

The festival has also set up the CineLink Impact Award, a new award as part of its CineLink Industry Days. The award, consisting of €20,000 in kind, is to support the development of an impact campaign for a project in post-production. Projects in the CineLink Work-In-Progress and Docu Rough Cut Boutique strands are eligible for the award, with the winner selected by a CineLink Impact jury consisting of Amy Sheperd, Rory Thost and Faridah Gbadamosi.