News / The Network Imprimer
The Network - 26/11/2012
Europa Cinemas Awards 2012 - Entrepreneur of the Year
The award for Best Entrepreneur of 2012 pays tribute to the commitment of Stefan Kitanov, who for the past 20 years has tirelessly championed the dissemination of European cinema in Bulgaria. Programmer at Dom na Kinoto starting in 1992, he became its director and brought the cinema into the network in 1995. In 2001 he established the company Art Fest, focussing on distribution, production and festival organisation, before returning to head the cinema in 2003. Today Art Fest’s catalogue boasts internationally renowned European films, and the cinema has seen its audiences double in less than ten years.
Foreign acclaim came to Dom na Kinoto with the launch in 2001 of the Sofia International Film Festival. Recognised by the FIAPF, this festival presents first and second films. In 2009, to ensure that these films are seen by the greatest number of viewers, the SIFF expanded to form the Sofia Film Fest for Students, giving youngers free and unlimited access to the films – showing a strong commitment to film education and openness to other cultures. But Kitanov’s desire to share films with ever larger audiences soon took him beyond Sofia. In the same year he launched the Sofia Film Fest at the Coast – screening the best of the SIFF in the coastal cities of Burgas and Varna – and the Sofia Film Fest on the Road. Also going by the name “Operation Kino”, this project is supported by MEDIA Mundus. The fruit of a cooperation between the Sofia, Sarajevo, Cluj and Istanbul festivals, the project seeks to widen the dissemination of European films across Southeast Europe via the Europa Cinemas network.