Kenyan project selected for Boost! initiative


The Hubert Bals Fund, CineMart and Binger Filmlab have chosen film projects by Kenya’s Hawa Essuman (whose first film was the Tom Tykwer-supported Soul Boy), Adrian Biniez (Uruguay) and Nikola Ljuca (Serbia) as the first selections in their new joint initiative, “Boost!’ The filmmakers will be offered coaching in the Binger On Demand programme. The projects will subsequently be presented at CineMart 2012.

As of 2011, the Hubert Bals Fund, CineMart and Binger Filmlab have joined forces in organising a special coaching trajectory for Hubert Bals Fund supported film projects. Each year, five projects selected for HBF Script and Project Development support are offered the opportunity to further develop their project at Binger Filmlab, as part of their Binger On Demand programme. At Binger Filmlab, the filmmakers are offered coaching – based on the specific needs of the project and filmmaker – focused on the further development of their film projects.

During the upcoming International Film Festival Rotterdam, the Boost! projects by Essuman, Biniez and Ljuca will be presented at the 29th CineMart (29 January – 1 February 2012), where they will be offered special pitching and project development sessions prior to taking one-to-on meetings at the co-production market.

Djin, Hawa Essuman’s second feature film project, is set in a sleepy seaside town that is about to be roused by Djin, the wind that stirs people’s deepest emotions and blows every 40 years. Essuman’s first film Soul Boy received Hubert Bals Fund support for post-production and saw its world premiere during IFFR 2010 as part of the theme section Where is Africa. German director Tom Tykwer supported Essuman in making SOUL BOY based on the script that Tykwer wrote together with Nairobi-based writer Billy Kahora. SOUL BOY took the Dioraphte Audience Award for Best Hubert Bals Fund supported film of IFFR 2010.

Adrian Biniez’s second feature film project EL 5 DE TALLERES (CENTER HALF OF TALLERES) tells about 35-year old Paton, who plays soccer in the third division team. His last months as a professional soccer player force him to think about his life in a new way and what his life after soccer may look like.

Biniez’s feature film debut GIGANTE (GIANT) received Hubert Bals Fund support for script and project development in 2006, was coproduced by Dutch IDTV/Motel Films as part of the HBF Plus scheme and took the Silver Bear at its Berlinale 2008 premiere.

In HUMIDITY, Nikola Ljuca’s first feature film project, the wife of a successful young man has suddenly disappeared. Assured that she will come back, the man returns to his work and friends. But, maybe she is just the first of the dominoes to collapse.

Serbian filmmaker Ljuca works in film and television as casting director as well as video artist for theatre and art projects. He won several international and domestic awards for his short film THURSDAY.

Ljuca’s script for HUMIDITY was developed during the Berlinale Script Station 2011.


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