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Institute of Documentary Film’s Activities

Founded in 2001, INSTITUTE OF DOCUMENTARY FILM (IDF) is a non-profit training and networking centre based in Prague, Czech Republic, focused on the support of Central and East European creative documentary film and its wider promotion.

We work closely with Central and East European film directors and producers and provide in-depth development support for their projects as well as international promotion.

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Ex Oriente Film and East European Forum Projects in Amsterdam

IDFA's FORUM (Nov 22 - 24) includes a number of projects that attended the 2010 Ex Oriente Film and East European Forum. Filmmakers and producers behind Brothers; Dust Dream; Escaping Riga; Phantom Pain Mladic, and Welcome to the Rich Men’s World will join our delegation as observers. The 16th Republic, winner of our IDFA Forum Award, will attend the Roundtable Pitch, and Odessa and Sofia’s Last Ambulance have been directly selected for the Central Pitch. Congratulations!


November 22 - 24, 2010
Amsterdam / Netherlands




The IDFA Forum Award is annually presented at the East European Forum by an IDFA representative. The winner travels to Amsterdam as a Guest Pitch in the Roundtable Pitch section. This year, Laurien ten Houten of IDFA awarded The 16th Republic.


The 16th Republic

Production company: Marina Razbezhkina Studios

16-ya Respublika , Russia, 90 min, DVD, HD, Creative, Social issues

Moscow auto giant ZIL was central to the lives of thousands of workers for more than 80 years, proudly calling itself a 'talent foundry', a 'city within a city' and the '16th republic'. Stalin, Brezhnev, Khrushchev and Gorbachev all travelled in ZIL’s iconic limousines. After a 20-year interval, the plant receives an order for new luxury cars. Three convertibles are supposed to take part in the Victory Parade on May 9, 2010. Few specialists from the elite, previously classified department of Original and Special Automobiles remain, and they are all retired. But the deadline must be met. While the secret division is scrambling to build cars for the Defense Minister, passions are boiling over in other parts of the plant. The convertibles are ready but suddenly the client no longer needs them. The ups and downs in this limousine story are but the tip of the iceberg.




Thanks to the partnership between IDF and the Industry Section at IDFA, selected Ex Oriente Film projects visit IDFA The FORUM as observers.



Production company: Staron Films

Bracia , Poland, 80 min, HD, Creative

The film is a journey through Stalin gulags and European Union salons. It is a story about determination, dreams, obstacles and the power of fraternal love. The film will tell the story of an unusual life of two brothers and their complicated relationship. A pragmatist and a dreamer, water and fire. One painted great maps and the other one – great paintings. Alfons is a painter and an acrobat; the archetype of artist. Mieczyslaw is a cartographer, looking after the house and trying to simpilify his brother’s grand plans.The film revolves around a dream – before he dies, Alfons would like to present his paintings in Brussels. However, on his return from Brussels, Alfons finds out that his paintings had been destroyed in a fire. Once again they are homeless and they have to start all over again. Will they succeed?


Dust Dream

Director: Gorski Maciej
Producer: Braid Monika
Production company: Braidmade Films Ltd, eastart pictures

Dust Dream , Germany, Poland, United Kingdom, 60 min, Digi Beta, Adventure and Sport

Charismatic coach Jagdish Singh and his boxing protégées have garnered success and awards, including the first Olympic medal for India, placing the dusty Indian city of Bhiwani firmly on the international sporting map. Yet controversial training methods remain under scrutiny by suspicious sports authorities with Coach Jagdish excluded from key champion fights. Dust Dream charts Jagdish’s fight for official recognition alongside the personal journey of three of his students – including one of the first female Indian recruits – as they dedicate their lives to the demanding regime of the Bhiwani Boxing Club and the promise of a better future. As Jagdish Singh prepares his boxers to compete at London 2012, he is simultaneously fighting for the recognition of his own name and that of his boxing club.


Escaping Riga

Director: Simanis Davis
Producer: Gaisa Līga
Production company: Mistrus Media Ltd.

Dzimis Rīgā , Latvia, 75 min, HD, Art and Culture, History

Escaping Riga is a cinematic journey, a docu-fiction trying to find answers to the question how the history of the 20th century has influenced people from the same place to lose their childhood illusions of comfort and become totally disillusioned. The main characters of the film are two world-class 20th century geniuses, the British philosopher Sir Isaiah Berlin and the Russian film director Sergei Eisenstein who were born in the city of Riga around a hundred years ago. Blending small everyday episodes of the lives of the two personalities and narrated by the director, the film is a personal interpretation of their life stories in the time period from their first meeting at the beginning of the 20th century to their second and last meeting after two world wars in 1945.


Phantom Pain Mladic

Director: Bahmer Helga
Producer: Winker Erik
Production company: HUPE Film - und Fernsehproduktion GbR

Phantomschmerz Mladic , Bosnia and Herzegovina, Germany, Serbia, 90 min, HD, Personal view, Politics, Society

Ratko Mladic, son of a Yugoslav partisan, former general from Bosnia, Serbian nationalist, responsible for systematic rape, expulsion and incredibly brutal murder...a free man. The Court of Justice in The Hague will be closing the files on Mladic in 2011 at the latest. It is hard for me to think about the man described above and that he still is on the loose. In mid-October I will be giving birth to a son. An alleged murder and war criminal has no place next to baby socks and hats. Or maybe it is exactly the right moment for me to think about the values I want to pass along to my son. My film project Phantom Pain Mladic focuses on the topics of humanity, reconciliation, and justice. The film shows how individuals and their children and even more generations have been suffering under brutal power politics.


Welcome to the Rich Men's World

Director: Ferdek Pawel
Production company: eastart pictures , Kalejdoskop Film Studio

Witamy w klubie bogatych , Poland, 55 min, Digi Beta, Culture, Ecology

Papua New Guinea, Sandaun province. Interior covered with impenetrable forest. A film about the secret murder of wives of the chieftain leads us directly to a conflict of two tribes. Imbiniss people are clearing their virgin jungle and they work with a Chinese corporation to start an oil palm plantation here. They want to have shoes, money, the road and normal houses as people of the modern world. Neighbouring Ossima maintains the traditional lifestyle like thousands of years before. A dispute about the border piece of the jungle is breaking out, and in the background – a dispute over values. Let us see from close up how another fragment disappears from the tropical forest, let us get to know the hopes and conflicts of people who are behind this decision.


Odessa by Florin Iepan and Sofia's Last Ambulance by Ilian Metev, two remarkable projects pitched at the East European Forum, have been directly selected for IDFA The FORUM Central Pitch, Congratulations!

Sofia's Last Ambulance

Director: Metev Ilian
Production company: Nukleus Film, SIA

Poslednata linecka na Sofia , Bulgaria, Croatia, 85 min, Digi Beta, Personal view

A film about the adventures of a doctor, nurse and a driver working in the emergency ambulance service in Sofia. Struggling against an avalanche of absurdities of a crumbling medical system and scarcely earning enough to make a living, these three are trying to save lives. On the backdrop of the social and political afflictions of the EU’s poorest and most corrupt member, we will be guided by our protagonists’ altruism and sense of humour. Throughout Bulgaria, financial support from the EU remains largely ineffective as the country’s state budget is absorbed by a powerful mafia. One of the most tragic casualties of the state is the medical system. After 20 years of capitalism, the number of ambulances in Sofia has dropped from 140 to 13. If you suffer a heart attack you can wait up to 5 hours for an ambulance to arrive. Where are all the ambulances?



Director: Iepan Florin
Production company: Subcultura Production, StarCrest Media

Romania, 52 min, HD, History, Society

In 2009 filmmaker Florin Iepan launched a personal campaign for the ‘denazification‘ of Romania. Based on the darkest moment in the recent history of his country, the massacre from October 1941 when Romanian soldiers, without any German assistance, burned alive more than 22,000 civilians in the occupied town of Odessa, Iepan starts the first public debate about the fascist chapter in Romanian history. This proves a real challenge for the EU and NATO member country, that carefully concealed its crimes against the Jews and Roma people during WWII, and where Marshall Antonescu, the head of the government at that time is considered even today, by the majority of Romanians, as a great patriot and anticommunist leader.


Hana Rezková
+420 777 240 005



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