The 49th International Film Festival – FEST Officially Opened at Sava Centre

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The 49th International Film Festival – FEST was officially opened. The Belgrade Victor Honorary Awards for Outstanding Contribution to Film Art were presented.


On Friday, May 7, in the Sava Centre, the 49th edition of the International Film Festival – FEST was officially opened, which is being organized by the Belgrade Festivals Centre – CEBEF. At the opening, after a minute of silence for all those who died of the COVID-19 infectious disease, In memoriam video of Hadži Aleksandar Đurović was shown, dedicated to film artists who passed away in the last year, after which the Belgrade Victor Honorary Awards for Outstanding Contribution to Film Art were presented. After the ceremony, the film ’The Dig’ directed by Simon Stone, starring Carrey Mulligan and Ralph Fiennes, premiered on the big screen.


Borislav Anđelić, the doyen of film criticism and former artistic director of FEST, presented the award to our director Puriša Đorđević.


On the occasion of receiving the award, the legendary director Puriša Đorđević said: ‘It is lovely that FEST is with us again, and in a way – it is good that I am with you too. I was born in 1924 on St. George's Day, in Čačak. Since then, I have shot many streets, many cities, many faces. I tried to express in my films what I could and could not do. And don't get angry, I'm in the middle of making another film.’


The current artistic director of FEST, Jugoslav Pantelić, presented the Belgrade Victor award to actor Rade Šerbedžija, and before that he referred to this year's edition of the Festival: ’May is not the usual time for FEST, but it is good that we are together. We have ten days ahead of us during which we will meet, talk and exchange experiences about the programmes that are held throughout Belgrade. I am sure that at this FEST you will discover some new filmmakers, remind yourself of some films that inspired you and those you trust, and that among the younger audience in all halls of FEST, there will be those who will represent the art of film in the future. Be brave and see those films that you have never heard of – it may happen that those films will be the ones you will remember this year by.’



Actor Rade Šerbedžija addressed the audience at the Sava Centre with the following words: ’I am proud to be a part of this superb cinema of the South Slavs, who used to be called Yugoslavs. As well as a part of this FEST, a festival that originated in 1971 at a time when Yugoslav film was one of the liveliest and most recognizable in the world. Led by the directors and film workers who founded such a magnificent festival in the middle of Belgrade. And that was the Black Wave film, those were the masters of the seventies, to whom our great Puriša Đorđević also belongs, then Žika Pavlović, Makavejev, Saša Petrović, Žilnik, and all those divine actors who participated in their films. I am happy to be a small part of that golden age of film. ’ At the end of his speech, Šerbedžija added: ’Congratulations to these boys and girls who are making a new start and a new festival – a new FEST, in these difficult times, what is terribly important for this beautiful city of Belgrade.’


At the closing ceremony of the Festival, the Belgrade Victor award will be presented to the set designer Miljen Kljaković – Kreka.


The International Film Festival – FEST will be held for the 49th time from May 7 to 16, 2021, organized by the Belgrade Festivals Centre (CEBEF) in the halls of Sava Centre, Kombank Hall, Belgrade Youth Centre and Cineplexx Galerija Belgrade, and will screen more than 70 premieres of films of the latest world, European and domestic cinema in seven selections. This year's festival is held under the slogan ‘Back to the Future’ with the intention of contributing to the revival of cinema screens and the return of film audiences to cinemas, as the largest and widely known film event in the country and the region.


Tickets for FEST are on sale at the box office of Sava Centre (B entrance from Vladimir Popović Street), Kombank Hall, Belgrade Youth Centre and Cineplexx Galerija Belgrade. Additionally, tickets for screenings in the Sava Centre, Kombank Hall and Belgrade Youth Centre can be purchased online, via the website, as well as at all Ticket Vision outlets.


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