HBO Central Europe Acquires Latvian Comedy ‘Samuel’s Travels’ – C&E Europe News in Brief

Latvian Comedy 'Samuel's Travels' Acquired by HBO Central Europe
Courtesy of Jurgis Kmins

“Samuel’s Travels,” directed by Latvian/Armenian filmmaker Aik Karapetian, has been acquired by HBO Central Europe. The deal was signed by the Copenhagen-based LevelK, who picked up international sales rights on the film in September, according to Film New Europe.

The acquisition by HBO Central Europe, with a license period set to start in the autumn, will cover Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Slovenia.

“Samuels Travels,” a darkly humorous story of a lone traveller’s journey gone terribly wrong, is Karapetian’s fourth feature film. The leading roles are played by Belgian actor Kevin Janssens and Latvian actress Laura Siliņa, among a largely Latvian cast.

The film was produced by Mistrus Media of Latvia in coproduction with Polar Bear of Belgium, and it was funded by the National Film Center of Latvia, the State Culture Capital Foundation of Latvia, and the Belgian Tax Shelter fund.

“Samuel’s Travels” had its world premiere at the Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas in September.

‘Vera Dreams of the Sea’ Wins GoEast
The Macedonian minority coproduction “Vera Dreams of the Sea” by Kaltrina Krasniqi was awarded the Golden Lily for best film in the International Competition section of the 22nd edition of GoEast – Festival of Central and Eastern European Film, which wrapped in Wiesbaden on April 25.

The Macedonian documentary project “I Don’t Want” by Hanis Bagashov received two awards in the East-West Talent Lab: the Renovabis Research Grant and the Current Time TV Award.

The festival screened 87 films and more than 200 guests attended. Highlights included the attendance of Polish filmmaker Paweł Łoziński, and Georgian director Lana Gogoberidze, who presented a retrospective of her work.

International Competition
Golden Lily for Film:
“Vera Dreams of the Sea” (Kosovo, Albania, North Macedonia), directed by Kaltrina Krasniqi

Award of the City of Wiesbaden for Director:
Anna Nemes and László Csuja for “Gentle” (Hungary, Germany)

CEEOL Award for Documentary:
“Boney Piles” (Ukraine), directed by Taras Tomenko

Special Mention:
“As Far as I Can Walk” (Serbia, Luxemburg, France, Bulgaria, Lithuania), directed by Stefan Arsenijević

FIPRESCI Award – Feature Film
“Pilgrims” (Lithuania), directed by Laurynas Bareiša

FIPRESCI Award – Documentary
“Boney Piles” (Ukraine), directed by Taras Tomenko

Work-in-Progress Competition
Merck Innovation Award for XR:
“Arctic Recall” (Russia), directed by Anna Tolkacheva

Special Mention:
“If These Streets Could Talk” (Hungary), directed by Barna Szász

East-West Talent Lab
Renovabis Research Grant:
“I Don’t Want” (North Macedonia), directed by Hanis Bagashov

Current Time TV Award (U.S.):
“I Don’t Want” (North Macedonia), directed by Hanis Bagashov

Pitch-the-Doc Award:
“Elena in Deleyna” (Bulgaria), directed by Elena Stoycheva

3sat broadcasting deal:
“Klondike” (Ukraine, Turkey), directed by Maryna Er Gorbach

Krakow Film Festival Announces Lineup
The 15 documentaries selected in the Krakow Film Festival’s international competition section include six productions from the Central and Eastern Europe region. The 62nd edition of the event will be held from May 29 to June 5, and online throughout Poland from June 3 to 12.

The lineup includes titles from Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Bulgaria.

The festival is on the list of events qualifying for the Academy Awards in the short film categories (fiction, animated and documentary), and feature documentary, as well as recommending films for the European Film Awards in the same categories.

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Courtesy of FNE
International Documentary Competition
“1341 Frames of Love & War” (Israel), directed by Ran Tal
“Adamiani” (Japan, the Netherlands), directed by Hirotoshi Takeoka
“Boylesque” (Poland), directed by Bogna Kowalczyk
“En mis zapatos” (Belgium), directed by Pedro Morato
“The Cathedral” (Slovakia), directed by Denis Dobrovoda
“Fragile Memory” (Ukraine, Slovakia), directed by Ihor Ivanko
“Little Axel” (Norway), directed by Fabien Greenberg
“At Full Throttle” (Czech Republic, Slovakia), directed by Miro Remo
“No Place for You in Our Town” (Bulgaria), directed by Nikolay Stefanov
“Beneath the Surface” (Norway, U.K.), directed by Alexander Niakaris Irvine-Cox
“Tolyatti Adrift” (Spain), directed by Laura Sistero
“Reconstruction of Occupation” (Czech Republic), directed by Jan Šikl
“Eternal Spring” (Canada), directed by Jason Loftus
“All That Breathes” (U.S., U.K., India), directed by Shaunak Sen

This article is published in partnership with online news service Film New Europe, which covers film and TV industry news from across Central and Eastern Europe.