AS FAR AS I CAN WALK, Europa Cinemas Label
Karlovy Vary Int. Film Festival
The Serbian feature film AS FAR AS I CAN WALK (STRAHINJA BANOVIĆ) directed by Stefan Arsenijević, has won the Europa Cinemas Label as Best European film at the 55th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, as it was announced today by a Jury of three Europa Cinemas Network exhibitors. 2021 marks the fifteenth time the Europa Cinemas Label has been awarded in Karlovy Vary.
AS FAR AS I CAN WALK (STRAHINJA BANOVIĆ) will now receive the support of the Europa Cinemas Network, with additional promotion and incentives for exhibitors to extend the film’s run on screen.
The jury issued the following statement: “The movie AS FAR AS I CAN WALK (STRAHINJA BANOVIĆ) is an excellent presentation of one of the most defining problems of our times, which is migration. The Europa Cinemas Label Jury fell in love with a story that combines traditional poem with contemporary issues. The young director, Stefan Arsenijević, presents the life of migrants precisely and accurately, yet anybody can relate to the intimate relationship struggles between the two main characters. We value this movie because of its outstanding cinematography, which smoothly supports the message of the story. We were also charmed by the appealing performance of the actors and believe, that the movie has a great potential to speak to various audiences of European cinemas with its strong, deep and emotional narration.”
The Europa Cinemas Label Jury of Karlovy Vary this year comprised Linda Arbanová (Kino Aero, Prague, Czech Republic), Erika Borsos (Budapest Film Zrt., Budapest, Hungary) and Gregor Janežič (Kino Vrhnika, Vrhnika, Slovenia).
Sold internationally by Soul Food Films, AS FAR AS I CAN WALK (STRAHINJA BANOVIĆ) is an Art & Popcorn (Serbia) production, co-produced by Les Films Fauves (Luxembourg), Surprise Alley (France), Chouchkov Brothers (Bulgaria) and Artbox (Lithuania).
The cast includes Ibrahim Koma, Nancy Mensah-Offei, Maxim Khalil, Rami Farah and Nebojša Dugalić. The script is by Stefan Arsenijević, Bojan Vuletić and Nicolas Ducray. Image by Jelena Stanković, editing by Vanja Kovačević, sound by Zoran Maksimović and music by Martynas Bialobžeskis.
Synopsis: Strahinja and his wife, Ababuo, both 28, left Ghana at the beginning of the migrant crisis. They managed to reach Germany but were deported back to Belgrade. Serbia may not be Germany, but Strahinja does his best to start a new life. He works hard to secure asylum, trying out as a football player for a local club and working as a volunteer for the Red Cross. The process, however, is lengthy and Ababuo, a passionate woman aspiring to become an actress in London, feels unfulfilled in their life. One night, a new group of Syrian refugees arrive, on their way to Western Europe. One of them is Ali, a charismatic left-wing activist. Ababuo initially mocks him, but, the very next day, leaves Serbia with him, providing no explanation. Strahinja sets off along the Balkan migrant route for completely different reasons than anyone else: for love.
Stefan Arsenijević graduated Film and TV Directing from the Faculty of Dramatic Arts in Belgrade (Serbia), where he now teaches film directing at the Master studies. His short film "(A)torsion" won the Golden Bear at Berlinale, the European Film Academy Award and was nominated at the Oscars. Stefan directed one of six stories for the project "Lost and Found" that premiered at Berlinale Forum in 2005. His first feature "Love and Other Crimes" premiered at Berlinale Panorama Special in 2008 and later on participated at numerous international film festivals and winning awards. Stefan co-wrote feature film "Practical Guide for Belgrade with Singing and Crying" (premiered at Karlovy Vary 2011) with writer/director Bojan Vuletic who also directed the film. The two cooperated again on the screenplay for Stefan Arsenijević’s second feature AS FAR AS I CAN WALK (STRAHINJA BANOVIĆ).
Press Enquiries: Charles McDonald
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Photo credits "AS FAR AS I CAN WALK": © Maja Medic
Photos credits "Independent Juries Awards Ceremony": © Film Servis Festival Karlovy Vary, a.s.