When setting up her company HiFilm Productions in 2004, Ada Solomon had already gained substantial experience as a filmmaker. With HiFilm, Ada has produced award-winning shorts by Cristian Nemescu (Marilena From P7), Radu Jude (The Tube with a Hat) and Paul Negoescu (Renovation), debut features by Melissa de Raaf and Razvan Radulescu (First of all, Felicia) and documentaries by Alexandru Solomon (Cold Waves), among others. She is the initiator of the NexT Film Fest in Bucharest and the Romanian coordinator for EAVE, and was presented by EFP as a Producer on the Move at the Cannes International Film Festival in 2011.
Alba is one of the most critically acclaimed, internationally renowned, Italian actresses of her generation. Starring alongside BAFTA winning actress Tilda Swinton in Luca Guadagnino’s I Am Love and Saverios Costanzo’s The Solitude of Prime Numbers gave her well-deserved recognition. At the 2012 Berlinale she could be seen in the lead role in Doris Dorrie’s Luck and she recently starred in the Venice Film Festival Golden Lion Award nominated Dormant Beauty, directed by Marco Bellocchio. At the Berlinale 2009 she was presented by EFP as Italy’s participant of Shooting Stars – Europe’s Best Young Actors.
Anamaria Marinca (Shooting Star 2008) is an internationally regarded and multi-awarded actress who made her silver screen acting debut in 2007 as the lead in Cristian Mungiu’s Golden Palm-winning drama 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days. She then worked with Radu Muntean on Boogie and with Julie Delpy on The Countess. She played one of the main parts in Storm by Hans-Christian Schmid which was selected for the 2009 Berlinale Competition. Marinca has since also starred in several US productions such as Europa Report by Sebastian Cordero, Look, Stranger by Arielle Javitch and Fury by David Ayer. She also had leading roles in BBC hit dramas, The Missing with James Nesbitt and River with Stellan Skarsgard. Presently, she is based in London.
Ankica Juric Tilic (PRODUCER ON THE MOVE 2009, PRODUCERS LAB TORONTO 2010 from Croatia)
is a producer with more than 20 years of experience in the film industry. She founded her production company Kinorama in 2003 and has since produced – together with her two partners – more than 20 feature films, several TV series and a number of shorts. Her latest films include this year’s Croatian Oscar entry, the award-winning family drama QUIT STARING AT MY PLATE (2016). Prior to that, she also produced the Croatian candidate for the Oscar in 2015, THE HIGH SUN, which won more than 30 international and national awards, including the Jury Prize in Cannes. The Croatian producer is a graduate of EAVE and a member of ACE and the European Film Academy.
Antoneta Kastrati is a Kosovo born filmmaker based in Los Angelos. After surviving the war in the late 1990s, she picked up a camera and began making award winning documentary films and shorts that addressed unexplored issues of post-war society. She holds a master in journalism and communications and completed directing studies at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles. Her first narrative feature film project, ZANA, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and was nominated as Kosovo's entry for the 2020 Oscars.
New York based Casting Director, Avy Kaufman has worked with directors Ang Lee, Robert Redford, Steven Spielberg, Ridley Scott, Michael Mann, Jodie Foster, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Wong Kar Wai and many others on numerous acclaimed films. She was awarded an Emmy for the pilot of Showtime's Damages and received Emmy nominations for HBO's Empire Falls and The Night Of. Other honors include Casting Director of the Year (Hollywood Film Festival 2005), several Artios awards from her colleagues and inclusion in Variety's 2018 New York Women's Impact List.
Bernard Michaux is a Luxembourgish producer best known for the critically acclaimed "Collective" by Alexander Nanau, which received Oscar nominations as Best Documentary Feature and Best International Feature in 2021. He studied film production at the Academy of Television and Film Munich and subsequently founded Lucil Film, which merged with Samsa Film in 2015. Samsa has produced many national and international award-winning feature films and TV-shows including "Tel Aviv on Fire" by Sameh Zoabi, "The Restless" by Joachim Lafosse and "Where is Anne Frank" by Ari Folman. Michaux has been honored with the Luxembourg Film-Award, a Cinema Eye Honors Award for Outstanding Achievement, and was nominated for the Independent Spirit Awards. He is an EAVE and ACE graduate and a member of the European Film Academy.
When talking about ambitious internationally renowned producers, Bettina Brokemper, CEO at Heimatfilm is one of the most successful of her generation. In addition, since 2001 she is also Managing Director of Zentropa International Cologne and has co-produced several Lars von Trier films, most recently Nymphomaniac and Melancholia. Her credits also include the 2010 Berlinale winner, Bal – Honey by Semih Kaplanoglu. Bettina Brokemper is a member of the European Film Academy and German Film Academy and in 2008 was awarded with the ‘Prix Eurimages’ for Outstanding European Co-production. In 2006 she was presented by EFP as a ‘Producer on the Move’ at Cannes.
Cassandra Han is an American casting director for feature films and television series. She has been based in Europe for 17 years, and specializes in crossing over between the Italian, German, US and UK markets. Recent credits include the Netflix series Curon, produced by Indiana and directed by Fabio Mollo and Lyda Patitucci and Crescendo, an award-winning arthouse feature directed by Dror Zahavi and inspired by a real-life youth orchestra composed entirely of Palestinian and Israeli musicians. Her Ötzi and the Mystery of Time, produced by One More Pictures in association with RAI Cinema, won Best Film at the 2018 Giffoni Festival. Italian casting credits include: Ford v. Ferrari (four Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture), directed by James Mangold for Twentieth Century Fox and with Matt Damon, Christian Bale, and Remo Girone as Enzo Ferrari; the popular ongoing Netflix series Barbarians, produced by Gaumont and directed by Barbara Eder and Steve Saint Leger; and A Hidden Life by Terrence Malick (Cannes 2019). Other recent credits include UK casting for ARD/Degeto's Little America, produced by FFP New Media and directed by Dror Zahavi and Roberto Faenza's Resilient, produced by Jean Vigo. Regional casting work includes and Narziss und Goldmund by Stefan Ruzowitsky, Amelie rennt (German Film Award 2018, Berlinale 2017) and La Corrispondenza, directed by Giuseppe Tornatore. Cassandra started off in casting back in New York in the 1990s, working with Sheila Jaffe and Georgianne Walken. She also worked for one of Broadway's top commercial producers, Richard Frankel. Other theater experience includes three summers at the Tony Award-winning La Jolla Playhouse and two seasons at the Opera Company of Philadelphia. Cassandra was a founding member of Ethan Hawke's New York-based theater company, Malaparte. Cassandra holds an MFA in acting from Trinity Repertory Company, and a BA from the University of Pennsylvania. She is a member of the Casting Society of America (CSA), the International Casting Directors Network (ICDN) and the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
His credits include many acclaimed European co-productions such as Before the Rain by Milcho Manchevski and No Man's Land by Danis Tanovic (Academy Award in 2002). In 2003, he founded the Paris-based production entity "A.S.A.P. Films", together with his fellow producer Marc Baschet and the director Danis Tanovic with whom he continued producing several remarkable films such as Hell and, most recently, Cirkus Columbia. Recently he worked with Aktan Arym Kubat on The Light Thief, Marion Hänsel on Black Ocean and Benedek Fliegauf on Womb.
photo © Dejan Vekicc
Based in Athens, Constantine Giannaris works as an independent filmmaker in the UK and Greece. Several of his films have been screened at international film festivals and forums. His first UK feature 3 Steps to Heaven competed in Cannes’ Director’s Fortnight in 1995. The following films have all been selected for Berlinale sections: From the Edge of the City (Panorama-1999), One Day in August (Competition-2002), Hostage (Panorama Special-2005) and Man At Sea (Panorama Special-2011). His new feature film Spring Awakening is in post-production.
A film writer since 1987, Damon Wise is currently a Contributing Editor with Empire magazine and an advisor to the BFI London Film Festival's Thrill strand. As a writer he has had his features, interviews and reviews published in many UK publications, including The Times, Financial Times, The Guardian and The Observer, as well as other film magazines such as Sight & Sound and the short-lived Neon. As well as covering set visits and junkets, he is a regular attendee at key international film festivals, including Sundance, Cannes, Venice and Toronto. In 1998 he published his first book, Come By Sunday (Sidgwick & Jackson), a biography of British film star Diana Dors.
is one of the most experienced producers from his region. Together with the directors Damjan Kozole and Metod Pevec he established the production company Vertigo in 1994. Here more than 40 feature films have been realized, including the multi award winning An Episode In A Life Of An Iron Picker (2013) by Danis Tanović, Circles by Srdan Golubović and I Am From Titov Veles (2007) by Teona Mitevska. Danijel Hočevar has been selected as one of “Variety’s Ten Producers To Watch”. He is a voting member of the European Film Academy, a member of the selection jury of Nipkow Programm and a member of the pedagogical team of EAVE and MidPoint.
began as a film critic in the early 1970s, writing on international cinema for magazines such as "Films & Filming" and "Monthly Film Bulletin" and the yearbook "International Film Guide". In 1998 he co-founded the Far East Film Festival in Udine, Italy. For 20 years, he was the chief international critic of the trade paper "Variety", during which time he also co-ordinated the annual Variety Critics' Choice selection at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival. He is currently the chief film critic for the Hong Kong-based website "Film Business Asia".
photo © Kiva
Dome Karukoski is one of Scandinavia's most acclaimed directors. His latest film is Tolkien - a biopic of renowned author J.R.R. Tolkien. Karukoski's films have received 38 nominations for the Finnish Film Award and he himself has been nominated six times and awarded the prize for best director twice. He is the only Finnish director ever to win all the main Finnish national film awards (Best Film, Best TV-Show and Best Commercial). Karukoski's first film Beauty and the Bastard (Berlinale 2006) was awarded the Norwegian Film award Amanda for the Best Nordic Debut of the year. Of his later films Home of the Dark Butterflies and Tom of Finland were chosen as Finnish candidate for the Academy Awards.
Dorka Gryllus (Actress and Shooting Star 2005 – Hungary)
became a superstar in her native country at the age of 20 with her role in András Sólyom's School of Senses, being named Best Actress at the 2005 Hungarian Film Week for her performance in Robert A. Pejo's drama Pallas Pashamende. The same year, she was selected as one of the European Shooting Stars at the Berlinale. Since then, Dorka has worked on international projects such as Irina Palm by Belgium's Sam Gabarski as well as German film and TV productions, ranging from Fatih Akin's Soul Kitchen to the ZDF two-parter Schicksalsjahre. She received two Best Actress awards for her performance in the Hungarian film Demimonde last year. Dorka has just completed shooting Bridge of Sighs by János Szász, together with former Shooting Star Zsolt Nagy.
Eduardo Noriega (actor and EUROPEAN SHOOTING STAR 1999 from Spain)
first studied music and piano, followed by acting lessons in his home town of Santander in Northern Spain. In 1992, he moved to Madrid to attend The Royal Spanish School of Drama from which he graduated in 1996. It was whilst there that he first met such newcomer directors as Alejandro Amenábar and Mateo Gil and started appearing in their short films. His career took off when he starred in Amenábar’s feature film debut, the surprise hit THESIS (1996), followed by OPEN YOUR EYES (1997) where he played alongside Penelope Cruz and received a Goya nomination for his performance. Since then, he has starred in films by Guillermo del Toro (DEVIL’S BACKBONE, 2001) and the Spanish blockbuster THE METHOD (2006). Following his GQ Award as “Actor of the Year”, he made two films in the USA: Brad Anderson’s TRANSSIBERIAN and the political thriller VANTAGE POINT. In subsequent years. Noriega has played alongside the likes of Sam Shepard, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Stephen Rea. In 2017 he stars in Àlex de la Iglesia’s PERFECT STRANGERS and in the thriller LA BOYA shot in the Dominican Republic.
has been one of the most popular Swedish actresses for the past 15 years. She has starred in over 50 feature films and TV productions and has played in over 20 stage productions at the Royal Dramatic Theater in Stockholm and the Stockholm City Theater. On the big screen she was successful in a number of popular Scandinavian films such as Kopps and Göta Kanal 2 and in the award-winning film Storm. Since 2008, Eva stars as the crime inspector Maria, in the internationally renowned Swedish crime series Maria Wern. The series contains 14 movies shown both as feature films and on TV.
is presently one of Germany's most eminent film and television actresses. She has appeared in German films like Aimée & Jaguar, Gripsholm, Hilde and The Door as well as international productions, including Love Actually opposite Hugh Grant. In television, she made an impression in such productions as Das Wunder von Lengede and Margarete Steiff. In 2010, Heike Makatsch made her stage debut at the Centraltheater in Leipzig. She played the role of Jane in "Paris, Texas", staged by Sebastian Hartmann and based on the film of the same name by Wim Wenders. In 2011, she was cast in the role of Aunt Polly in the first German cinema adaptation of Tom Sawyer under the direction of Hermine Huntgeburth. Heike Makatsch was honoured for her roles with, among others, the Bavarian Television Prize, the Golden Camera and the Bambi.photo © Nela König
Ingvar Sigurdsson, a graduate of The Icelandic Academy of the Arts in 1990, is one of Iceland's most respected actors, with an extensive background in classical and contemporary theatre, international films and TV series. He has also written and produced several films. Sigurdsson has been honored with numerous awards and recognition for his acting, including seven Edda Awards as Best Actor; The European Film Award as Best European Actor - People's Choice for his lead role in Angels of the Universe (2000); and selection as a European Shooting Star in 1999.
Director / screenwriter Jan Komasa's films have premiered or been honored in Berlin, Cannes, Venice, Tribeca, Toronto, Palm Springs and Chicago. His multi-award winning film, Corpus Christi, was nominated for an Oscar as Best International Film and in 2020 The Hater won Best Film at the Tribeca Film Festival. Komasa has also directed documentaries, including The Flow and the acclaimed box office hit, The Warsaw Uprising. He is a member of the American Film Academy and Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters. He has been honoured by the Polish Film Academy as Best Director and Discovery of the Year as well as having received their Best Film statuette twice. omasa is a lecturer at the National Film School. Łódź; an expert for the Polish Film Institute; and participates on academic panels / symposiums at notable international universities.
Jan Lumholdt (Writer/Critic – Sweden)
has been a regular contributor and reviewer for the renowned Stockholm daily Svenska Dagbladet since 2001. He studied Literature and Film History at the University of Lund. Among his publications are "Lars von Trier: Interviews" (University Press of Mississippi, 2003) and "Harriet Andersson" (Alfabeta, 2005), for which he was awarded the Jurgen Schildt Award for excellence in cinema writing. Lumholdt is the chairman of The Swedish Association of Film Critics and a member of the Swedish Oscar Committee.
Award-winning director Jasmila Žbanić was born in Sarajevo where she is currently based. Her credit list includes Grbavica, winner of the Golden Bear at the 2006 Berlinale and On the Path which screened in Competition at the 2010 Berlinale and starred Zrinka Cvitešic, Croatian Shooting Star 2010. She is a graduate of the Academy of Performing Arts in Sarajevo. In 1997, together with her friends, she founded the Artist’s Association “Deblokada” where she produced, wrote and directed several documentaries, video-art works and shorts, including Participation, Lost and Found and Red Robber Boots.
Jina Jay’s credentials include Steven Spielberg’s War Horse (starring David Kross, German Shooting Star 2009), Ralph Fiennes’ Coriolanus (with Lubna Azabal, Belgium Shooting Star 2004), Stephen Daldry’s The Reader ( with David Kross, German Shooting Star 2009) and Anna Karenina by Joe Wright, starring the 2011 Shooting Stars, Alicia Vikander (Sweden), Domhnall Gleeson (Ireland) and Bill Skarsgård (Shooting Star, Sweden 2012). More recently she has worked with Michael Winterbottom, Susanne Bier and Anton Corbijn. Jina Jay is a member of the American Academy and BAFTA and is on the 2012 Jury for the BIFA’s.
Katarína Krnáčová is EAVE graduate and Producers on the Move participant, Vice-President of the Slovak Film and Television Academy and a voting member of European Film Academy. Krnáčová was delegate producer of the family drama Little Harbour, a Slovak-Czech co-production awarded with Crystal Bear at Berlinale 2017 for the Best Film in Generation Kplus. She previously worked on the short film Thanks, Fine by Mátyás Prikler that premiered at Cinéfondation in Cannes 2010, followed by Prikler's feature Fine, Thanks that premiered at IFF Rotterdam 2014 and Slovakia 2.0. Krnáčová also worked on Mira Fornay's My Dog Killer, that won the Tiger award at IFF Rotterdam in 2013 and was the Slovak Oscar entry.
Leo Barraclough serves as international features editor at Variety, where he assigns articles about the international film and TV business, as well as writing numerous news and features stories himself. He also edits many of Variety's e-Show Dailies. He previously served as one of the magazine's international correspondents, covering U.K./Ireland, Germany, and Central and Eastern Europe. Prior to joining Variety, he was features editor, and then managing editor of Screen International. He started in film and TV trade journalism at Moving Pictures International, where he was news editor and then deputy editor. He is a member of BAFTA.
Levan Akin is a Swedish filmmaker of Georgian descent, whose work often plays on class and gender. His award- winning films include AND THEN WE DANCED, which premiered in Cannes at the Director's Fortnight and was Sweden's official entry for the Oscars in 2019. The film also received multiple honors at the Swedish Guldbagge Awards including Best Film, Best Script, Best Photography and Best Leading Role. Akin's other films include THE CIRCLE (Berlinale, 2015) and CERTAIN PEOPLE (Tribeca FF 2012), as well as several series, most notably REAL HUMANS. Akin is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. He is currently working on his next feature, PASSAGE, set in Georgia and Turkey with production set for 2022.
has been a Casting Director for three decades, in New York and Los Angeles, a member of the Casting Society of America and a founding member of the International Casting Directors Network (ICDN). Working in American and European films such as Peter Weirs The Way Back, Gilles Paquet-Brenners Sarah's Key, Jennifer Lynchs Surveillance, Kenneth Lonergans You Can Count on Me, Douglas McGraths Nicholas Nickleby, and Jodie Fosters Little Man Tate, she is now producing Shirin Neshats and Shoja Azaris film Paradise and Kim Spurdocks Kin which just received the Chris Columbus Award. She is also the Breakthrough Performer Director in the Hamptons International Film Festival.
Lucinda Syson (Casting Director – UK)
started her career as a casting director 25 years ago after graduating in French and Linguistics. Her training under Priscilla John began with films like Alien 3 and Seven Years In Tibet. Her first film as casting director was Udayan Prasad's Brothers in Trouble, and Lucinda has since worked with such filmmakers as Luc Besson (Fifth Element), Christopher Nolan (Batman Begins), Alfonso Cuarón (Children Of Men), receiving an Artios nomination for Matthew Vaughn's 2010 film Kick-Ass. She is a member of the International Casting Directors Network and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Lucy Bevan, who trained with Casting Director Mary Selway, has most recently cast the upcoming major studio productions: Cruella for Disney, Death on the Nile for Fox, and Cats for Universal as well as The Good Liar by Bill Condon with Ian McKellen and Helen Mirren. Further film credits include: Ready Player One by Steven Spielberg, Murder on the Orient Express, All Is True and Cinderella by Kenneth Branagh, Snowden by Oliver Stone, Beauty & The Beast and Mr Holmes by Bill Condon, Fury by David Ayer, The Hundred Foot Journey by Lasse Hallström, Maleficent by Robert Stromberg, and Before Midnight and Me & Orson Welles by Richard Linklater. TV credits include: A Christmas Carol and Collateral for BBC.
Macdara Kelleher is the Managing Director of Fastnet Films, one of Ireland's most successful production companies and Founder of leading Irish distribution outfit, Wildcard. He serves on the board of Screen Producers Ireland. Among his recent successes is the Irish box office #1 hit, BLACK'47, which premiered at the Berlinale (2018). Other productions include Mammal (2015), and Strangerland (2016), both of which premiered at Sundance. His most recent production is Nightflyers, the new George R.R Martin TV series from NBC-Universal and Netflix.
belongs to the most prominent Polish filmmakers and covers a broad spectrum working as screenwriter and producer as well as documentary and feature film director. She has been honoured with several awards, including the Teddy Award for In The Name Of at the Berlin Film Festival and the Silver Leopard Award at the Locarno Film festival for 33 Scenes From Life. Malgorzata Szumowska was twice nominated for the European Film Awards for Happy Man and Stranger. Her movie Elles, featuring Juliette Binoche and Anaïs Demoustier, French SHOOTING STAR 2010, was sold to over 40 countries.
Award-winning producer Maria Ekerhovd hails from Norway and founded her production company, Mer Film, in 2011. Prior to that, Ekerhovd had the honour of winning Norway's only Palme d'Or in Cannes with Bobbie Peers' short film, Sniffer (2006). Her most recent productions include Itonje Søimer Guttormsen's Gritt, which premiered at Rotterdam; The Innocents by Eskil Vogt, which launched in Un Certain Regard at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival; and Gunnar Vikene's box office hit, War Soldier, the 2023 Norwegian entry for the Oscars. Ekerhovd was the Norwegian co-producer on Jonas Poher Rasmussen's triple Oscar nominee, Flee, which was awarded best documentary at the European Film Awards. In 2021, Ekerhovd was honoured with the Eurimages Co-production Award at the European Film Awards.
Academy Award-winning Marleen Gorris has a large range of internationally acclaimed films on her list of credits. In 1996, Antonia's Line won her various prizes such as the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. Her subsequent films have also been critically acclaimed, including The Luzhin Defence (UK), Mrs Dalloway (UK), starring Vanessa Redgrave, Carolina (USA) with Shirley MacLaine, Within the Whirlwind (German co-production) starring Emily Watson. Marleen Gorris is currently preparing two films set in the Netherlands. In addition, she works as a consultant for feature films for the Dutch Film Fund.
Marta Donzelli is one of Italy’s most successful producers of independent films. With “Vivo Film”, established in 2004 together with Gregorio Paonessa, she has produced more than 30 titles to date. Many of her films have been selected and awarded at the most prestigious international film festivals, including Sworn Virgin by Laura Bispuri (Berlinale Competition 2015), A Street In Palermo by Emma Dante (Venice Competition 2014), Le Quattro Volte by Michelangelo Frammartino (Cannes, Director’s Fortnight 2010). In 2011 Donzelli participated in “Producers on the Move” at Cannes. She is a member of the Editorial Board at Donzelli Publishing House.
Matt Mueller (Film Critic – UK) is a London-based film journalist with considerable and award-winning achievements in the industry. He has served as the editor on two British film magazines - Total Film and Premiere's UK edition - and seen his writing published in The Guardian, The Sunday Times, The Independent, Entertainment Weekly, Screen International, GQ and Empire.
A contributing editor for Total Film and Wonderland magazines, he continues to profile some of the biggest names in the business whilst also covering the film world as a respected industry pundit.
... is one of the world's most successful cinematographers. He shot
more than 80 feature films and worked with the greatest directors in
Germany and the US, amongst them Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Martin
Scorsese, Mike Nichols, Francis Ford Coppola, Robert Redford and
His best known films are THE MARRIAGE OF MARIA BRAUN (1979), The Color of Money (1986), Broadcast News (1987), The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989), Goodfellas (1990), Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992), Outbreak (1995), Gangs on New York (2002) and The Departed (2006).
He got three »Academy Award Nominations« for his films. In 2006 he
was the first German to receive the »American Society of
Cinematographers International Achievement Award« - the most important
award for a non-American cinematographer. In December 2007 the European
Film Academy awarded Michael Ballhaus the EUROPEAN ACHIEVEMENT IN WORLD
CINEMA 2007 - Prix Screen International.
Mijke de Jong (Director/Writer, The Netherlands)
has shown great social engagement in her work over the past 25 years: starting with her co-authored feature film debut, LOVE HURTS (1992), which won the Special Jury Prize in Locarno, through to her latest film, LAYLA M. (2016). The much-lauded drama about the radicalisation of a young Muslim growing up in Amsterdam is this year’s Oscar entry from The Netherlands. De Jong’s international breakthrough came with the award-winning film, BLUEBIRD (NL 2004), which premiered in Toronto and won the Crystal Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival 2005. Her other outstanding works include JOY (NL 2010), which received the Best Feature Film Award in The Netherlands.
Mode Steinkjer (critic/editor, Norway)
works as a film critic as well as the Arts Editor for the renowned daily Norwegian newspaper Dagsavisen. He had written about film, the arts and art since the mid-1980’s for several major newspapers in Norway, as well as running his own music show at the national radio NRK, before becoming a staff writer and Arts Editor at Dagsavisen. As a renowned film critic, Steinkjer has served on several juries, including the FIPRESCI Jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 2017 and twice at the Berlin International Film Festival’s FIPRESCI jury, in 2013 and 2015. Steinkjer is the chairman of The Norwegian Association of Film Critics and a member of the Norwegian Oscar Committee. He is also a voting member of the European Film Academy.
is casting for French and European productions and already worked with some of Europe’s most respected directors. Her credit list includes Lucy and The Family by Luc Besson, Les Garçons et Guillaume, à table! by Guillaume Gallienne, Mr Morgan's Last Love by Sandra Nettelbeck, Sa Majesté Minor by Jean-Jacques Annaud, Paris, Je t'aime by 20 directors and The Bourne Identity by Doug Liman. Nathalie Cheron is member of the International Casting Directors’ Network (ICDN) and of the Association des Responsables de Distribution Artistique (ARDA).
Nicole Schmied (casting director and ICDN member, Austria)
started her career as an assistant director for film and television in 1979. From 1999 onwards, she worked as a casting director and, in 2005, founded her own company, covering popular TV shows as well as feature films for cinema and television. Since then, Nicole Schmied has cast Austrian and international co-productions, including the latest film by the renowned Austrian director Stefan Ruzowitzky, the award-winning thriller COLD HELL (2017), and the similarly acclaimed THE PEOPLE VS. FRITZ BAUER (2015) by the German director Lars Kraume. Her portfolio also includes the mystery western DARK VALLEY (2014), starring Sam Riley, and the transgender drama ERIK. WELTMEISTERIN (2017) by Reinhold Bilgeri.
Pandora da Cunha Telles (Producer – Portugal)
started her career in film production in 2001 at Filmes de Fundo and was selected as one of EFP's "Producers on the Move" in Cannes in 2004. In 2009, Pandora established the production company Ukbar Filmes together with Pablo Iraola, producing Vicente Alves do Ó's Florbela, winner of six Sophias (Portuguese academy awards). Her latest productions are The Bridges of Sarajevo (2015), which screened at Cannes' official selection, and The Train of Salt and Sugar by Licinio Azevedo, which premiered in Locarno. At the moment Pandora is finalizing Ukbar's latest features, The Surge by Daniela Thomas and Joaquim by Marcelo Gomes. Pandora is currently the president of APCA (Portuguese Association of Producers of Cinema and Audiovisual).
Dutch casting director Rebecca van Unen works both nationally and internationally from offices in Amsterdam and Antwerp. She started off in 1999 and since then, has had the opportunity to cast a diverse mix of critically acclaimed projects both nationally and internationally with credits that include Winter in Wartime by Martin Koolhoven and Layla M by Mijke de Jong. Recent projects include Matthijs van Heijningen's Forgotten Battle, Do Not Hesitate by Shariff Korver and Jamila Žbanić's Quo Vadis Aida which was nominated for an Oscar as Best International Film and won Best Film, Director, Screenwriter, and Actress at the 2021 European Film Awards. In 2015 van Unen won the Subtitle Fest Angela Award for Outstanding Achievement in Casting. She is a member of the International Casting Directors Association and the European Film Academy.
René Ezra is a Danish producer who has produced a wide variety of film and TV-series. René Ezra has produced big commercial successes and award-winning films, including May el-Toukhy's Queen of Hearts (2019) and the Oscar-nominated film A War (2015), directed by Tobias Lindholm.
Rie Hedegaard has cast films for some of the most exciting Danish and international film directors working today, amongst them Lars von Trier (Dancer In The Dark, Breaking The Waves), Thomas Vinterberg (The Celebration, Submarino), Anders Thomas Jensen (Men & Chicken), Ole Christian Madsen (Itsi Bitsi, Flame & Citron), Christoffer Boe (Sex, Drugs & Taxation), Per Fly (Pelle, the Conqueror II) and Mikkel Nørgaard (The Keeper Of Lost Causes). Since 2002, she has taught at the Danish Government Acting Schools and is a member of the ICDN.
Rüdiger Sturm has been covering the film industry in its various creative and economical aspects for more than 20 years. His work has been featured in a great number of German-speaking and international magazines. Sturm also functioned as co-author of the book Oliver Stone – La vita è una questione di centimetri (together with Marco Spagnoli) and contributed to the volumes about Paul Verhoeven and Roman Polanski in the Conversations with Filmmakers book series.
Sara Serraiocco, born in Pescara, made her acting debut in 2013 in Cannes Critics' Week winner, SALVO, where she won the Italian Golden Globe as Best Actress and the Nastro d'Argento as Best New Talent. In 2015, she was cast in Lamberto Sanfelice's CLORO, which screened at the Sundance Film Festival and the Berlinale. This was quickly followed with the lead in Marco Danieli's WORDLY GIRL, which won her the National Film Critics' Award as Best Actress. Next up, her role in Mauro Mancini's NON ODIARE (2020 Venice Film Festival) was recognized with the Nastro d'Argento as Best Supporting Actress. Her TV work includes a recurring role in Counterpart (2017-2019) opposite Academy Award winner J. K. Simmons. In 2016, Serraiocco was honored as a European Shooting Star.
Simone Bär (Casting Director – Germany) numbers among the most respected European casting directors. After founding the "Casting Studio" in Berlin in 1990, she has worked both nationally and internationally with the finest directors. Her list of credits includes films by the German directors Christian Petzold (Yella), Tom Tykwer (Three) and Marc Rothemund (Man tut was man kann). Moreover, she was responsible for the German casting on Roland Emmerich's Anonymous, Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds and Stephen Daldry's The Reader. In 2002, Simone Bär received the German Casting Award at the Cologne Conference.
Tara Karajica is a Belgrade-based film critic and journalist. Her writings have appeared in Indiewire, Screen International, Variety, Little White Lies and Film New Europe, among many other media outlets, including the European Film Academy's online magazine, Close-up. She is a board member of NISI MASA as well as a member of the Online Film Critics Society and the Women Film Critics Circle. In February 2018, she launched Fade to Her, a magazine about successful women working in Film and is a regular at film festivals as a film critic, moderator and jury member.
Macedonian born Teona Strugar Mitevska started as a child actor, trained as a painter and graphic designer and studied film at NYU. She directed her first short, Veta, in 2001 and her award winning feature debut, How I Killed a Saint, in 2004. She followed this up with several features, most recently, God Exists, Her Name is Petrunija. In 2016, Mitevska set up SISTERS AND BROTHER MITEVSKI with her siblings and has co-produced The Wild Pear Tree, Nightlife and Sieranevada. In 2018, France's Ministry of Culture awarded her the Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.
Thierry Chèze is film editor at the renowned French cinema magazine “Studio Ciné Live” since it launched in 2007. At the Paris based monthly magazine he is in charge of spotlighting new talents in French cinema. He is also a regular collaborator on various TV shows including Ca Balance à Paris, a weekly cultural magazine on Paris Première channel and Le Cine-Club on France 2. Since 2010, Thierry Chèze is the voiceover of the Cannes Film Festival’s closing ceremony and the Cesar ceremony. In addition to journalism, Thierry Chèze is also directing documentaries about acting.
Thure Lindhardt (Actor and SHOOTING STAR 2000 – Denmark) is one of the most critically acclaimed Danish actors of his generation. He garnered international recognition with various films, including Into the Wild (Sean Penn) and two films by Danish director Ole Christian Madsen: Nordkraft and Flame & Citron for which he was nominated as “Best Actor” at the Bodil Awards and the European Film Awards in 2008. In the US, Thure attracted attention with his role in Angels and Demons by Ron Howard. Known in Germany for Love in Thoughts (Achim von Borries), he soon will be seen in the German feature Formentera by Ann-Kristin Reyels, as well as the Bulgarian production The Island (Kamen Kalev).
Timka Grin was born in Sarajevo, and is an international casting director with a notable list of acclaimed films to her credit. She has cast feature films, shorts and TV series, many of which went on to win awards, such as her most recently completed production, MURINA, winner of the Caméra d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival this year. She is a member of Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), European Film Academy (EFA), Casting Society of America (CSA) and is currently Chair of the International Casting Directors Network (ICDN). Grin feels she has gained her most valuable professional experience through her work with such renowned directors as the Dardenne brothers, Jean-Luc Godard, Danis Tanovic, Aida Begic, Jasmila Zbanic, Marion Haensel and Marco Bellocchio, to name a few.
Tobias Kniebe is the film editor for Germany’s highly respected newspaper, Sueddeutsche Zeitung. Kniebe studied Journalism, Philosophy and Political Science at Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich. Aside from his work as a film critic, he has made documentaries for Bavarian Television, co-written the feature film Fremder Freund with Elmar Fischer (2003) and published a study of Germany’s military resistance movement against Hitler, “Operation Walküre” (2009). In 2010, Kniebe received the prestigious Reporterpreis Award for his profile of maverick German film director Klaus Lemke.
Madrid native Verónica Echegui's career took off after a leading role in Bigas Luna's acclaimed I am Juani, earned her a Best Emerging Actress nomination at the 2006 Goya Awards. She then starred in many Spanish-language features including El patio de mi cárcel, for which she was nominated as Best Leading Actress at the 2009 Goyas. In 2012, she won her first Gaudí Award for Katmandú, a mirror in the sky and followed this up with featured roles in many international films. At the 2021 Goya Awards, Echegui was nominated for her work in And my heart goes, Boom! and made her debut as writer/director with Tótem Loba, winning a Goya for best short film at the prestigious festival. In a busy 2022, Echegui took on leading roles in the thriller Objetos, a Netflix series Intimidad, Cesc Gay's Stories not to be told (TIFF 2022) and is currently in production on a new project.
Vesela Kazakova is a multi award-winning actress, who graduated both in acting and producing in Bulgaria. Her leading roles in films like Odkratnati ochi (2005) and Prima Primavera (2009) received prizes for Best Actress in Bulgaria and abroad, including a Silver George Award at the Moscow Film Festival. Following her acting career, Kazakova set out to create socially and politically charged work with her production company Activist38 which she co-founded with Mina Mileva. Their internationally acclaimed documentaries have provoked an outcry in Bulgaria and put institutional pressure on the duo. Their first fiction film Cat in the Wall premiered in competition at Locarno Film Festival in 2019.
Xavier Koller (Director – Switzerland)
initially worked as an actor and director for theatre, television and commercials before making the short fiction film Fano Hill in 1969. His feature debut, Hannibal, premiered in the Directors' Fortnight in Cannes in 1973. In 1991, Koller received the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film for Journey Of Hope and has since been based in Los Angeles, working on such English-language features as Squanto, A Warrior's Tale and Ring Of Fire. He has returned to Europe to shoot such films as Gripsholm, Einer wie ich (Someone Like me), Die Schwarzen Brüder and, most recently, Little Mountain Boy (Schellen-Ursli), based on the classic Swiss children's book.
Yun-hua Chen is an independent film scholar, critic, and curator and holds a PhD in Film Studies from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. She writes academic articles and film reviews in English, Chinese and German. Her articles can be found in Directory of World Cinema, Journal of Chinese Cinemas, Film International, Cinephilia and several edited volumes. Her monograph Mosaic Space and Mosaic Auteurs: Alejandro González Iñárritu, Atom Egoyan, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Michael Haneke, funded by Geschwister Boehringer Ingelheim Stiftung, was published by Neofelis Verlag in Berlin in 2017. She has also worked as festival director at dokumentART, an annual film festival in Neubrandenburg, Germany. She has been a jury member at many international film festivals including Filmfest Hamburg, IFFMH, Beldocs and DOK Leipzig.
Every year EFP appoints a jury of prominent industry figures (director, producer, actor, casting director, film journalist) to select Europe's best young actors from a variety of up-and-coming acting talent from all over Europe.
This year the jury consists of the Polish director and screewriter Jan Komasa, whose films have premiered or been honored in Berlin, Cannes, Venice, Tribeca, Toronto, Palm Springs and Chicago. His multi-award-winning film, Corpus Christi, was nominated for an Oscar as Best International Film. He is joined by award-winning producer Maria Ekerhovd founder of the Norwegian production company Mer Film. Her most recent productions include The Innocents by Eskil Vogt, and Gunnar Vikene's War Soldier, the 2023 Norwegian entry for the Oscars. Ekerhovd was also the Norwegian co-producer on Jonas Poher Rasmussen's triple Oscar nominee, Flee, which was awarded best documentary at the European Film Awards. Spanish actress and former European Shooting Star Veronica Echegui caught the eye of the industry and public with films such as I am Juani and Katmandú, a mirror in the sky which earned her a Goya nomination in 2006 and her first Gaudí Award in 2012. Most recently, Echegui can be seen in a leading role, inter alia, in Cesc Gay's Stories not to be told (TIFF 2022). Dutch casting director Rebecca van Unen has cast a diverse mix of critically acclaimed projects with credits that include Winter in Wartime by Martin Koolhoven and Layla M by Mijke de Jong. Recent projects include Matthijs van Heijningen's Forgotten Battle and Jamila Žbanić's Quo Vadis Aida which was nominated for an Oscar as Best International Film and won Best Film, Director, Screenwriter, and Actress at the 2021 European Film Awards. Rounding out the jury is Variety's international features editor Leo Barraclough who also writes for the publication and edits many of their e-Show Dailies. Prior to joining Variety, he was features editor, and then managing editor of Screen International. He started in film and TV trade journalism at Moving Pictures International, where he was news editor and then deputy editor.
Combining their diverse expertise in the various fields of the creative filmmaking process, the jury will select the ten most talented and internationally diverse young actors and actresses from the candidates who have been nominated by their respective EFP member organisations for the upcoming edition of EUROPEAN SHOOTING STARS.
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