The Transilvania International Film Festival’s (TIFF) main prize went this year to Spanish film-maker Rodrigo Sorogoyen’s Stockholm as the week-long festival came to a close on June 8.

The second feature also picked up the Best Performance Award for leads Javier Pereira and Aura Garrido at the gala awards ceremony on Saturday evening (7).

Almost lost for words as he accepted the prize on the stage of Cluj’s National Theatre, an elated Sorogoyen (pictured) said that these were the film’s first international awards.

Stockholm previously earned best actress and new screenwriter honours in Malaga last year and a Goya this year for Pereira.

TIFF’s international jury including Chicago Film Festival director Michael Kutza, NFTS director Nik Powell and Hungarian film-maker Janos Szasz, presented their Best Directing Award to Poland’s Tomasz Wasilewski for his second feature Floating Skyscrapers and the Special Jury Award to Bulgaria’s Maya Vitkova for her debut Viktoria, which had its world premiere at Sundance in January.

Special mentions went to Iranian film-maker Amir Toodehroosta’s Paat and Noaz Deshe’s Italian-German-Tanzanian co-production White Shadow.

Other awards included the FIPRESCI Prize for John Michael McDonagh’s Calvary for a film from the Eye For An Eye sidebar, and the Young Francophone Jury Prize to Michel Gondry’s Mood Indigo.

The evening also saw UK-based producer-director Uberto Pasolini picking up his second Audience Award from the Cluj festival: five years ago, his film Machan had been voted the most popular film by the TIFF festival-goers and this year it was the turn of Still Life.

Accepting this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award, Polish director Krzysztof Zanussi, who turns 75 this month, said he hoped this didn’t mean that his career was over and recalled that Chicago’s Michael Kutza had bestowed this honour on him when he was still only in his 40s.

Meanwhile, US actress Debra Winger promptly renamed her Career Achievement Award on stage by placing one of the Save The Big Screen red stickers on the trophy.

Donations to the crowdfunding campaign to raise €7,000 to clean up Cluj’s former Film Warehouse and transform it into a new open-air screening venue were being accepted at the festival and at

Romanian Days honours

The brand new Romanian features premiered within this year’s Romanian Days failed to ignite any great enthusiasm within the visiting international guests, a fact reflected in the award-winners selected by the juries.

Fittingly in the run-up to the World Cup this week, the award for Best Feature Film went to Corneliu Porumboiu’s The Second Game, which premiered in the Berlinale Forum last February, while Tudor Cristian Jurgiu’s The Japanese Dog was named Best Debut.

Iulia Rugina’s Dying From A Wound Of Love was named Best Short Film, with a special mention going to the actress Sofia Nicolaescu in Radu Jude’s It Can Pass Through The Wall, which premiered in Cannes last month.

Transilvania Pitch Stop

Speaking before announcing the two winners of this year’s new TIFF initiative, the Transilvania Pitch Stop (TPS), jury member Katriel Schory said that the five projects presented had been “very interesting, inspiring and exciting. We were really impressed by the stories and by the quality of the way they were prepared and presented.”

Schory and his co-jurors Nadia Dresti and Annamaria Lodato reached unanimous decisions on both awards, giving the development award to Daniel Sandu’s first feature Father Moves Mountains and the post-production award to Cristi Iftime’s debut Maritza.

The Romanian Days three-day marathon programme of open and closed screenings and special events also included presentations of Dominique Nasta’s in-depth analysis of Contemporary Romanian Cinema and a DVD box set of films by Radu Gabrea.

International guests attending this year’s edition of the Romanian Days ranged from such producers as Cedomir Kolar (A.S.A.P. Films), Martichka Bozhilova (Agitprop), Elie Meirowetz (Ez Films), and Elvira Geppert (Geppert Productions), through sales agents Pierre Menahem (mpm film), Youn Ji (Autlook Film Sales), Philippe Tasca (Outplay), Xavier Rashid (Film Republic)  to festival and market organisers from Berlin, San Sebastian, Wiesbaden, Cottbus, Vilnius, Odessa, Arras, Sarajevo and Rotterdam and representatives of film institutions from Serbia, Bulgaria, Croatia, among others.


Mutu United with Wasilewski
Internationally renowned Romanian cinematographer Oleg Mutu is now attached to Tomasz Wasilewski’s next feature United States Of Love, which is set to begin shooting at the start of 2015.

Distributor-producer Manana will produce the Polish film-maker’s third feature, which was pitched to potential partners at this year’s CineMart and the Berlinale Co-Production Market.

Mutu’s credits include the Palme d’Or winner Four Months, Three Weeks, Two Days, Sergei Loznitsa’s In The Fog, and Loznitsa’s contribution to The Bridges Of Sarajevo in Cannes last month.

Lazarescu reunited with Filmallee
To date, Silent River (Apele Tac) by Anca Miruna Lazarescu has picked up more than 78 awards around the globe, making it the most successful German short of all time.

Lazarescu is now reuniting with Filmallee’s David Lindner for her debut feature project Neulich Die Reise Mit Vater, which is set in 1968 during the Prague Spring.

This week, her feature debut received €200,000 production funding from the film fund of the new German State Minister for Culture & Media, Monika Grütters.

Moldova to launch film fund
Moldova is expected to have its own CNC-style national film body “in a few weeks”, according to Moldovan producer Dumitru Marian who spoke exclusively to Screendaily during this week’s Romanian Days in Cluj.

The second reading of a new cinema law passed the Moldovan Parliament last week as part of a full reset of film financing in Moldova, and it should not be long before the film funding institution is in place later this year.