Levan Koguashvili, director, winner of Golden Pram for Best Feature Film
Director, born in Tbilisi in 1973. Between 1995 and 1999, Levan Koguashvili studied Film Directing at the Russian State Institute of Film (VGIK) in Moscow, where his mentor was famous Soviet director Marlen Khutsiev. In 2007, he graduated from the Tisch School of the Art’s (New York University). His first feature film Street Days was an international success. It premiered at the Rotterdam Film Festival in 2010 and was widely regarded as the beginning of a new wave of the modern Georgian cinema. His second feature film Blind Dates premiered at Toronto and Berlin International Film Festivals and won many awards around the world, including the Zagreb Film Festival.
Christoph Thoke, producer
A German film producer. His films reached 700 festival selections and won 150 awards. He has been working with highly acclaimed directors such as three-time Cannes winner Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne and two-time Cannes winner Bruno Dumont, Apichatpong Weerasethakul and Rachid Bouchareb. Having started as a studio executive at Bavaria Film, Taunus Film, Wiesbaden and at the postproduction giant Cine Media Film, Christoph began to produce through his own company Thoke + Moebius Film. In 2007, he launched Mogador Film (Berlin, Frankfurt, Mainz) from where he is currently producing and financing for the local and international market.
Jessica Woodworth, director
An American-Belgian filmmaker based in Ghent, Belgium. She studied literature and classical theatre at Princeton University, and holds an MA in Documentary Film from Stanford University. Her documentary The Virgin Diaries was nominated for the FIPRESCI Award at the Amsterdam Documentary FF 2002. In 2011, she was president of the jury at the Ghent IFF. With Peter Brosens, she directed and wrote films Khadak (Venice IFF 2006 – Lion of the Future Award), Altiplano (Cannes 2009 – Critics’ Week) and The Fifth Season (Venice 2012 – Official Competition). The three films were screened at over 150 festivals and won numerous awards.
SHORT FILMS AND CHECKERS
Andrei Creţulescu, director, winner of Golden Pram for Best Short Film 2014
A former film critic, Andrei Creţulescu produced the first season of the TV series In deriva (remake of In Treatment) and nine original documentaries for HBO Romania. In 2011, he launched Kinosseur Productions. Creţulescu wrote and directed Bad Penny and Kowalski. Bad Penny won Best Short Award at 12th ZFF, as well as Best Director and Best Actor awards at the European FF of Lille in 2015. His third short Ramona won the Canal+ Award at the Critics’ Week at the Cannes FF and Best Short Award (ex-aequo) at the Transilvania IFF. He has just finished his fourth short film, Seven Months Later, and is currently preparing his first feature, Charlton Heston.
Sata Cissokho, festivals manager
Sata Cissokho joined Memento Films International in 2014 as festivals manager. She is also handling the arthouse label Artscope, most recently representing Chaitanya Tamhane's Court (Lion of the Future and Orizzonti Award at the Venice IFF 2014; India's Entry for the 88th Academy Awards) and Gabriel Mascaro's Neon Bull (Special Jury Prize at the Venice IFF 2015, Honourable Mention of the Jury at the TIFF 2015). She previously worked at the Ney York based independent distribution company Zeitgeist Films and assisted the Tribeca Film Festival's programming department.
Sonja Tarokić, director
Sonja Tarokic holds an MA in Film Directing, and a BA in Literature. She is the author of several short films. On Shaky Ground was screened at Rotterdam IFF and awarded the best Croatian short at Zagreb Film Festival, while her other films (You Bitch!, I’m a Self Made Woman, Smart Girls, Red) were screened and awarded at numerous international festivals, such as Sarajevo FF, Vila do Conde, Angers Premiers Plans, NEXT Bucharest FF, Brief Encounters FF. She works in advertising, runs several film workshops, writes film reviews, and is currently developing her first feature film The Staffroom.
JURY PLUS (YOUNG JURY)
Nino loves movies very much. He loves even more talking about the movies he has seen with his loved ones. If a film is made right, it often leaves him breathless and he watches it wide-eyed. He even gets goose bumps and sometimes he cries. In his own words – it is a fantastic feeling!
He was often told that the knowledge of film would not be of any use to him and that watching films endlessly would ruin his chances for a "real life". And now he gets to be a jury member! He loves questioning and commenting on everything he sees on film. He particularly gets his kicks from dramas with rich plots and "not so obvious" endings.
She loves rating films and commenting on them in the company of her seven-year-old brother, who looks at her in wonder while playing with his toy-cars. She is looking forward to be part of the festival and its jury – the honor that usually belongs to actors is now being given to the generation of the future.
Eva Lotta Čimbur Pukšec
She was pleasantly surprised by the fact that youngsters can finally have a say. She believes she does have something to say. She sees her life as an accumulation of experiences. She collects them just like others collect stamps or banknotes. She is looking forward to participating in PLUS program jury and then storing it into her memory as yet another collectors' item.
She says she does not consider herself a film lover. Rather, she is a filmgoer. She approaches films critically, looking for some advice, suggestion, entertainment or, perhaps, comfort. Sometimes she gets a feeling that films provide her with an insight into their authors' inner world like no other art can do.