Can cinema forge a country? CINEMA KOMUNISTO takes us on a journey through the crumbling remains of Tito’s film industry exploring the rise and fall of the cinematic illusion called Yugoslavia. Using rare footage from dozens of forgotten Yugoslav films, as well as never-seen-before archive from film sets and Tito’s private screenings, the documentary recreates the narrative of a country, the stories told on screen and the ones hidden behind it. Stars such as Richard Burton, Sofia Loren and Orson Welles add a touch of glamour to the national effort, appearing in super-productions financed by the state. Tito’s personal projectionist who showed him films every night for 30 years, his favourite film director, the most famous actor of partisan films, and the boss of the central film studios with secret police links – all tell how the history of Yugoslavia was constructed on the screen.
DIRECTOR BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE:
Mila Turajlic was born in Belgrade, (then) Yugoslavia in 1979. She studied politics and media at the LSE in London, and specialised in documentary filmmaking at La Femis in Paris, and with Academy-Award winner Tony Schwartz in New York. She gained experience working on feature films (“Apocalypto” dir. Mel Gibson, “Fade to Black” dir. Oliver Parker, “Brothers Bloom” dir. Rian Johnson). Her first feature doc “Cinema Komunisto” premiered in the First Appearance Competition at IDFA 2010. It was developed in the Discovery Campus Masterschool, Berlin Talent Campus, ARCHIDOC and the IDFA Academy Summer School. Her first feature documentary, Cinema Komunisto has premiered at IDFA First Appearance and won 10+ festival awards and Focal Award for Best Use of Archival Footage in an Arts Production.