55th TIFF: Agora Awards


The curtain dropped on the Agora section of the 55th Thessaloniki Film Festival with the presentation of the awards for the 10th edition of Crossroads, TIFF’s Co-Production Forum, and for the Agora Works in Progress. The awards were revealed and presented in a festive ceremony that took place on  Friday, November 7, 2014 at the Electra Palace hotel. Festival director Dimitri Eipides attended the ceremony.
In her opening speech, Head of Crossroads Marie-Pierre Macia thanked Mr Eipides, the entire Agora team and the sponsors and supporters of this year’s edition. Ms Macia presented the awards and congratulated all participants in the 2014 Agora section, adding she was very pleased with the quality of all the competing projects.
For the fifth consecutive year, Graal Post Production House handed out a co-production award to one of the participating projects in the Works in Progress section of Agora. The winning project will receive post-production services worth 70,000 euros. The winner in this category was Suntan, a film directed by Argyris Papadimitropoulos and produced by Phaedra Vokali(Marni Films, Greece). The members of the jury of the Agora Works in Progress – Konstantina Vonorta (producer, Graal S.A., Greece), Arnaud Gourmelen (programmer,  Directors' Fortnight, France) and Gabor Greiner (sales agent, Films Boutique, Germany)- stressed that they had a hard time choosing the winner among the many excellent candidates and added that they are eager to see Suntan in cinemas.
The award for the 10th Crossroads Co-Production Forum was presented next. Thirteen film projects took part in this year’s edition of Crossroads. The jury, consisting of  Ewa Puszczynska (producer/Opus Film, Poland), Elise Jalladeau (producer/Audiovisual Attachee of the Embassy of France in Greece, France) and Thania Dimitrakopoulou (sales agent/Match Factory, Germany), handed the award to Kids From The East, a film project directed byAramisova (produced by Michal Kracmer, Cinedix, Czech Republic – Slovak Republic). Greek post production company 2|35 presented Kids From The East with the co-production award (visual and audio), while the Producer Network of the Cannes Film Festival granted an accreditation to the winning producer to participate in the upcoming Producers Network 2015. Explaining the rationale of their decision, the jury commented that the wining project impressed jurors with “its lively and playful cinematic approach.” Jurors also said that this special approach will enrich the long tradition of Czech cinema, which was represented in Crossroads for the first time.
 Kids From The East (directed by Aramisova and produced by Michal Kracmer, Cinedix, Czerch Republic – Slovakia) also won a scholarship for script development by the Mediterranean Film Institute’s Script 2 Film Workshops.
For a fourth consecutive year, the French consulting firm Initiative Film will provide its expertise to one Greek project taking part in Crossroads. Representing the firm,Isabelle Fauvel, who presented the awards, said: “It was a difficult choice for us and because all projects were very good, we decided to hand out two awards.” Ark, directed by Aristotelis Marangos and produced by Vasilis Chrysanthopoulos (plays2place productions, Greece) was the winning project, while Initiative Film presented a citation, accompanied by a consulting session, to the Greek project A Pack of Sheep, directed by Dimitris Kanellopoulos, and produced by Konstantina Stavrianou (Graal Films) and Elina Psykou (Guanaco).