4th KinoKino Festival Only a Month Away!
The end of February is a special time for the youngest film lovers: a time for a festival tailor-made to their needs, KinoKino, the International Film Festival for Children which makes cinema a special and different experience. The fourth festival edition will take place between 20 and 24 February at Zagreb’s Europa Cinema, with a plenty of film titles, workshops and different events for children and their parents. The main competition presents an overview of the most important recent feature films for children from all over the world, and off-programmes include a selection of short films, a special section of Classics with Guests in which, for this occasion, famous personalities from the cultural world are choosing their favourite films. The festival will also include a very popular section First Time at the Cinema – a line-up of fiction and animation films intended for pre-schoolers who are about to experience big screen movie watching for the first time.
As far as the competition is concerned, we are proud to announce one of the most important films for children in the past few years, The Witch Hunters by Serbian director Raško Miljković. The Witch Hunters is a story about a lonely boy Jovan who suffers from cerebral palsy, whose life radically changes with a new classmate, Milica, who will help him experience what he thought was impossible. The film premiered at the prestigious TIFF Kids, garnering the main award. The streak continued at the probably most important children’s film festival in Europe, in Zlín, winning the best leading role award and, shortly afterwards, conquering the world and most of the prominent children’s film festivals.
A special film about a special girl comes from Africa, more precisely from Kenya. Supa Modo premiered at Berlinale and speaks about nine-year-old Jo, a big fan of action films, who has two great wishes – to become a superhero and make a film with herself in the leading role. Only in a fantasy world can Jo forget that she is terminally ill and bed-ridden, but everything turns upside down when the whole village unites to convince her that her superpowers are real and makes her happy until the very end. Supa Modo, award-winner at countless festivals, from Durban to Edinburgh, is a film that reminds us that even when they abandon us, little heroes like Jo continue to inspire.
This year’s professional jury consists of Marjo Kovanen, a film educator from Finland, director Čejen Černić (The Mystery of Green Hill), and writer Olja Savičević Ivančević (Adio kauboju, Pjevač u noći, Nasmijati psa). Our Finnish guest will take this chance to convey the local experience of film education at schools, from preschool to high school levels, aiming to foster film literacy among schoolchildren. Like every year, a children’s jury consisting of five primary schoolers will be choosing the best film, and all the spectators will take part in deciding the audience award. We invite all the interested primary schoolchildren age 12 to 15 who wish to be part of the children’s jury to enter the open call. All it takes is sending a cover letter and a list of 10 favourite films with a short explanation at firstname.lastname@example.org. The application should include the contact of the parents or caretakers (first and last name, phone and email). The open call closes on 30 January.
For decades one of the most faithful visitors of Europa Cinema, Petar (the director) and Vesna Krelja (the screenwriter), often seen inseparable in the front rows, will select a film they believe is a must-see for all generations for the section Classics with Guests. After the screening, Petar and Vesna will have a chat with the young audience to find out if the old films still have the same impact on the upcoming generations.
A series of children’s workshops will take place during the festival to make their time at the cinema filled with learning and entertainment. The director of a successful screen adaptation about the adventures of a boy named Koko, The Mystery of Green Hill (Golden Arena for best debut), and jury member Čejen Černić will host a workshop under the name First Steps in Filmmaking, whose participants will get a task to create an original story, and the result of their joint creative effort will enter Croatian Audiovisual Centre’s open call for script development, which might lead to making a new Croatian children’s film!
Like last year, a film poster design workshop will be organised in association with designer Andrea Sužnjević from the award-winning design studio Šesnić&Turković. The final product will be a poster for one of the titles in this year’s main programme. Another event is the workshop From Cinema to Classroom: a workshop of teaching about short film, intended for teachers, educators, librarians and all other employees in the education and training sector. Since the workshop sparks great interest year after year, this year’s edition will have more visiting speakers. The open calls for this and other workshops will be announced soon, so keep an eye on our official festival website!