VOLOGDA, Russia — The 17th edition of the Sarajevo Film Festival opens July 23 with a program rich in world and international premieres, and eight feature films competing for a prize purse that totals nearly $60,000.

The festival has established itself as a leading regional industry focus since it was founded in 1995, while the city was still under siege in the Balkans civil war.

Its industry sidebar — co-production platform CineLink — has become a key draw for producers from the wider region.

The festival opens with a gala screening of Hungarian director Bela Tarr’s Berlin Silver Bear Award winning film “The Turin Horse.”

“The program has never skewed younger than this year, as we are bringing seven debut films and just one second-feature film,”

said Elma Tataragic, festival program director.

Competition lineup features the world preem of “A Trip” (directed by Nejc Gazvoda, Slovenia), “Amnesty” (Bujar Alimani, Albania-Greece-France), “Ave” (Konstantin Bojanov, Bulgaria), “Blurs” (Aldo Tardozzi, Croatia), “Breathing” (Karl Markovics, Austria), “Broken Mussels” (Seyfettin Tokmak, Turkey), “Loverboy” (Catalin Mitulescu, Romania-Sweden) and “Wasted Youth” (Argyris Papadimitropoulos, Jan Vogel, Greece).