There are less than two months left until the moment when the movie screen will be raised under the starry sky of Sisak for the ninth time in a row, and the visitors of this year’s Star Film Fest can expect a series of films in competition, screenings in the OFF program, workshops and good music. As every year until now, the main part of the program is dedicated to films of all genres in competition for the star awards that will be decided by this year’s jury.

Mateja Štefinščak graduated from the Media Technician School at the Electrical Engineering School in Varaždin. During her high school days, she attended the animation film school VANIMA where she also created her first animated film, with which she received her master’s degree in New Media at the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb. She studied 3D animation and narration for half a year as part of Erasmus in Belfast at the Ulster University and made several educational short animated films.

Lana Barić graduated in acting from the Academy of Performing Arts in Sarajevo and in 2011 she was accepted into the Drama Department of the Croatian National Theater in Zagreb. She starred in more than 40 plays and as many film and television productions. She wrote several scripts for short films and the script for the feature film Tereza37 for which she received the Golden Arena for the best script at the Pula Film Festival. The film won another 5 Arenas, including the one for the best film and a total of 18 awards at more than 30 festivals, and was also the official Croatian candidate for the Oscar award.

In 2011 Bojan Mrđenović graduated from the undergraduate studies in art history and information sciences in Zagreb. In 2012 he graduated from undergraduate and in 2015 from graduate studies in film and TV camera at the Academy of Dramatic Arts in Zagreb. Today, he teaches art subjects at the same department. He works in the field of photography and film, and is also the winner of the University of Zagreb Rector’s Award and the Marina Viculin Award for the development of photographic creativity. He is the author of several short films, and as a cameraman he collaborates with numerous directors of the younger and middle generation, mostly in the field of documentary films.

The films will be judged by Ivan Milosavljević, whose film Blue Border won the awards for the best documentary and regional film and for the best editing at last year’s edition of Star Film Fest. Ivan graduated in film editing at the Faculty of Dramatic Arts in Belgrade. As a VFX artist, assistant editor and editor, he worked on a dozen feature films and documentaries. He has been engaged in production since 2014, when he founded his own production house. He is the producer of the feature-length documentaries Noise Addict and The Desert House, as well as the short-length documentaries Oranges Bloom Outside and Blue Border which is also the first film he directed.

The fourth member of the jury is Karlo Vorih who graduated from the School of Graphics, Design and Media Production after which he enrolled at the Academy of Dramatic Art majoring in Film and TV directing. Since 2018, he has been leading film workshops for elementary, high school and editing workshops as part of the Blank_film incubator and the FROOOM film summer school. In 2021 he graduated with a degree in film and television directing and enrolled in a master’s degree in feature film directing. He co-directed the short movie Hana, Hano, Hanice. In 2020, he directed the short documentary Mila. Autumn of our Summer is his final undergraduate film that won the Zagreb Film Festival 2021 – Golden Trolley for the best short film and the Croatian Film Days 2022 – the award for the best film.

This year, the jury awards prizes for the best documentary film, the best feature film, the best experimental film and the best animated film. Also for the best regional film, the best editing, the best photography (camera) and the best student film. But don’t forget that it’s not all up to the jury either, because the special star award for the best film according to the audience’s opinion will be given by you!

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