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All filmmakers selected for HBF Script and Development Fall 2018

48th International Film Festival Rotterdam

23 January - 3 February 2019

Rotterdam, 13 November 2018

IFFR’s Hubert Bals Fund announces selection for fall 2018

Celebrating 30 years of supporting film

International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR)’s Hubert Bals Fund (HBF) has selected eleven film projects for its Script and Project Development Scheme, which together will receive €115,000. Among the selected titles is a new work by Apichatpong Weerasethakul entitled Memoria.

To celebrate its 30th anniversary, the fund is supporting three filmmakers who have built up a special connection to HBF over the years, in recognition of their continued dedication to creating quality cinema. They are Apichatpong WeerasethakulLisandro Alonso and Benjamín Naishtat. Weerasethakul presented his unique immersive experience SLEEPCINEMAHOTEL at IFFR 2018. Tilda Swinton is among the cast for his new project, Memoria

Alongside these familiar names, IFFR is supporting seven promising new filmmakers within HBF Bright Future, including Prantik Basu, Aboozar Amini and Sara Ishaq. These filmmakers represent a wide regional spread, and four of them are women.

Marit van den Elshout, head of IFFR Pro: “This autumn we’re supporting a remarkable selection of projects on their way to completion, seven of which are first or second feature films. As we’re celebrating the 30-year existence of HBF, we are reminded once more of the importance of supporting cinema in parts of the world where filmmakers are not always free to express themselves as they please.”

This is particularly evident in the case of Oleg Sentsov. He remains locked up in a Siberian prison and will be supported for his dystopian film Numbers in collaboration with Akhtem Seitablaev.

Also among the filmmakers selected is Indian filmmaker Prantik Basu, whose short film Sakhisona won a Tiger Short Award in 2017. His first feature-length project Dengue will tell the story of an unlikely romance set in Calcutta. Afghan documentary filmmaker Aboozar Amini has previously screened two films at IFFR and now receives support for his first fiction film Ways to Run, about a 16-year-old apprentice bus driver in Kabul. His recent Kabul, City in the Wind is the opening film of International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam on 14 November 2018. Yemenite filmmaker Sara Ishaq is another documentary filmmaker supported in a first foray into fiction. Her film The Station will tell the story of a 15-year-old girl managing a women-only petrol station in war-torn Yemen.

All titles selected for the HBF Script and Development Scheme, Fall 2018:

Bright Future (upcoming filmmakers with their first or second feature film)

  • Dengue, Prantik Basu, India
  • Do Fish Sleep with Their Eyes Open?, Nele Wohlatz, Argentina/Brazil
  • From Guiné, Caroline Leone, Brazil
  • Raja's Early Summer, Zi Gao, China
  • The Station, Sara Ishaq, Yemen/Jordan
  • This Is Not a Burial, It's a Resurrection, Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese, Lesotho/South Africa
  • Ways to Run, Aboozar Amini, Afghanistan/Netherlands

Voices (filmmakers who are more advanced in their careers)

  • Eureka, Lisandro Alonso, Argentina/France/Brazil/Netherlands/Germany/Spain/USA
  • Memoria, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Colombia/Thailand/UK
  • Numbers, Oleg Sentsov in collaboration with Akhtem Seitablaev, Ukraine/Poland
  • La rosa de cobre, Benjamín Naishtat, Argentina

About HBF

The Hubert Bals Fund of International Film Festival Rotterdam provides financial support to remarkable feature films by innovative and talented filmmakers from Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and parts of Eastern Europe. Since the fund’s establishment in 1988, more than 1,100 projects have received support. Each year, a rich harvest of films supported by the HBF is presented at IFFR and various major festivals around the world. Three titles previously supported by HBF have already been selected for IFFR 2019.

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About International Film Festival Rotterdam

International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) – one of the largest cultural events in the Netherlands, and one of the biggest audience-oriented film festivals in the world – offers a high quality line-up of fiction and documentary feature films, short films, exhibitions, performances, masterclasses and talkshows. IFFR actively supports new and adventurous filmmaking talent through numerous industry initiatives including co-production market CineMart, through the BoostNL and Propellor initiatives, its Hubert Bals Fund and Rotterdam Lab. IFFR takes place from Wednesday 23 January to Sunday 3 February 2019. More information can be found at IFFR.com.

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