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Documentary about HUMAN and ANIMAL rights from SARAJEVO

KINOFIL engaged documentary about HUMAN and ANIMAL right from SARAJEVO by Damir Janecek AWARDED for the best documentary​!



A feature-length activist documentary Kinofil from director and screenwriter Damir Janeček won THE STJEPAN FILIPOVIĆ award for thebest documentary at The International Film Festival in Opuzen which took place from 20th - 28th August, 2011.

This festival is unique for its courage in dealing with activist topics and screening independent films of European authors. The film selectors consider that there are European authored films which don't have the chance to be shown and regularly distributed because of their uncommercial and critical nature. A total of 77 carefully/chosen films were shown from many EU countries. The festival was supported by the President of Croatia, Ivo Josipović.

Director Damir Janeček from Sarajevo won the award for the best documentary. At the award ceremony he was given the statue of the great Stjepan Filipović- a young man, courageous anti-fascist, symbol of the fight for freedom. The statue represents Stjepan Filipović in with raised clenched-fist arms, wide opened towards the sky and partisan cap on the head, while waiting with dignity his execution on the gallows and not betraying the fight for good, for freedom.

Famous photographs of that act are even displayed in the New York United Nations building! He was born in Opuzen and part of his childhood he spent in Mostar. While bravely fighting against the fascists and Nazis, he was captured by četniks and handed over to the Germans who condemned him to death by hanging because he refused to betray anything. His courage and dignity with those wide-opened and raised arms will be remembered and appreciated from those who know that he was not fighting for ideology, but for peace, love, people and nature. His monument was erected in Valjevo and before that in Opuzen. In 1991, Croatian nationalists blew up the monument in Opuzen. Sadly, since that act of vandalism glorifying violence, primitivsm and unconsciousness, until the moment that the award statue was lifted in the clenched-fist and raised hands of Damir Janaček, Stjepan Filipović was almost pushed into oblivion.

"I want that Stjepan Filipović and the other memorials that represent valuable things and people, yet were stolen, destroyed... are put back in their places, and that with that we beat this terrible primitivism that is just the introduction to something much worse (because when you are destroying someone's statue, you are also destroying what it symbolizes)"

Damir Janeček is the first person in the history of this festival that this award statue has been given to, and he is very proud of that honor and the responsibility it carries. The award was made by the decision of the audience watching the film Kinofil with all their attention on the crowded Opuzen main square.

"I am proud of this award. Especially for it's symbolism. I recived already awards in my life, but I am not interested in them, I think that film is not a sport and that it shouldn't be a competitive thing, but with this award, the recognition from the Karim Zaimović family and his Foundation, is something tremendously valuable for me."

Putting himself in this famous pose, Damir Janeček received ovations from the Opuzen public amongst whom there were also part of the Opuzen authorities (HDZ) which were not very happy to see something connected to Stjepan Filipović.

Janeček thanked and mentioned that he is a film director who empahsizes with and who, with this film, wants to help animals and people (especially those ones that share selflessly, helping and fighting for life), starting with Voltaire`s motto: "Every human is guilty for every good thing which he hasn't done."

"This award is recognition for the film, but also to those without whom many dogs wouldn't have been saved. Primarily with that I mean Silva Beran Ivani�ević and Velimir Ivani�ević (Velja Pas) who were the pioneers of animal protection in BiH (UG SOS SARAJEVO). Unfortunately even in this moment animals continue to suffer. This must come to an end!"

The film Kinofil is the brave feature-length activist documentary from Damir Janeček, producer, director and screenwriter. The film was edited by a great editor Sanjin Stanić, and shot bySrđan Kovačević while splendid and simple music was composed by the violinist Emil Gabrić, and an excellent English translation was made by Vladan Petković. The main protagonists of the film are Velimir Ivani�ević and Silva Beran Ivani�ević who founded the first association for the prevention of animal cruelty <Sos Sarajevo>. Despite many problems, threats, misfortunes, misunderstandings and so on, they are surviving, but unfortunately struggling to this day. Their lives, and the lives of others who are helping less fortunate ones, first of all tortured animals, are threatened by the arrogant and primitive authorities who deny for years to build shelters for animals, while they spend the same or even bigger amounts of money on slaughtering, strangling and other brutal ways of killing animals. And all that without any penalties!

"Sarajevo could have had a contemporary animal shelter for free already 10 years ago, helping to treat war wounds, and giving the warmth of life to new generations, teaching about diversity and through the influence of dogs, helping heal the whole society. With all this, many unemployed veterinarians could have been employed, a safer life for animals and citizens could have been provided, a serene home and food for animals could have been achieved in a very human way. But, the authorities refused to do that for years. It was always important to keep this issue active, they shifted the guilt onto innocent dogs and not onto people, they slaughtered and strangled them, and kept them, and people who were normal enough to be on their side, in pain. I think that more than 15 million Convertible marks were spent during these years and more than 10 thousand dogs were killed for no reason, while many have earned huge money and went unpunished for their atrocities. The situation is not much better today, nobody gets punished, laws are not respected, and those who are for the law, for the state, for the people, are often held as enemies of everything and were called četniks, which is the sign of a great collective schizophrenia. That is why I am begging and calling to resistance all those who are aware and conscious! We all are one. Pain of the other is also our pain."

Special thanks from Janeček and whole festival team, led by the festival director Augustin Zonjić, were directed to the family of their colleague, director Ivica Mu�an in whose house he spent unforgettable Opuzen days, introduced to agriculture, the life of the river, sea, swamp, reservation and reclaimed lands, eels... birds... all in all, to the colorful life of the Neretva riverdelta.

"I will also use this media space to appeal to stop the hunt, especially brutal catching of the eels, that wonderful animal that goes thousands of kilometers away to spawn in the Sargasso sea, so their descendants could come back to Neretva delta. The number of eels is being reduced with each hunt, and because of the dam, eels were notable to go back to their home for the last 30 years. Birds, who are also constant target, are also endangered, and although they are very small, they get high prices on the international market. I believe it is hard to change all habits, but about some things we should really think a bit more, and not wait for "the day of the last eel". "

Due the obligations connected with writing about his work on animals in the film and the perception of it in public, because of trying to influence a film industry and animal life, ethics and bioethics, and his attempts to make the authors in the film industry more aware when they work with animals, Janeček didn't have time to make the film about eels during his short staying in Opuzen. But he has written the scenario that he would like to turn into film one day.

"It is interesting that more than 5 months before, in the moments before I was forced to leave my home town for a while because of the threats to my rescued three-legged dog Ska, sad because of the silence of my colleagues and all the others about this occasion, threats, mistreatments and attacks I went through, sitting in the little apartment that the present authorities are trying to take away from my family, using my sometimes hacked and misused profile on social networks as the sign of resistance and protest, I put for my new profile picture this photography of Stjepan Filipović with clenched-fists and wide opened raised arms."


To support KINOFIL and his endeavor that with this art piece to influence the violence against animals, you can join the Facebook group


For any additional information, arrangements and questions, feel free to contact the author

+385(0)95/800 9424

A big THANK to all the animals and people for the help!

From the heart!

Lijep pozdrav,

Damir Janeček


click photos to enlarge



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