29th Sarajevo Film Festival begins in Bosnia

29th Sarajevo Film Festival begins in Bosnia

Surprise guests, celebrity appearances mark red carpet in Sarajevo

By Talha Ozturk

BELGRADE, Serbia (AA) - The 29th Sarajevo Film Festival (SFF) began Friday in the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina with Slovenian director Nenad Cicin-Sain's Kiss the Future.

The opening ceremony was held at the National Theater with major celebrities from the world of cinema taking to the red carpet parade.

The SFF will run until Aug. 18, and viewers worldwide can watch more than 230 films from 70 countries.

Kiss the Future, a documentary movie, showcases the struggle of Sarajevo citizens and how aid worker Bill Carter's determination resulted in enlisting U2 and drawing the world’s attention to the Bosnian war.

It follows the city's alternative scene, which uses music and art to provoke change and attract world attention. A post-war U2 concert celebrated the city's hard-won victory against nationalism.

The arrival of surprise guests and film crew members Bono and The Edge from the U2 rock band marked the screening of the opening film.

The U2 stars arrived with their wives Ali Hewson and Morleigh Steinberg, along with model and activist Christy Turlington.

Türkiye's public broadcaster, TRT, will compete in the SFF with three award-winning films set to run until Friday.

Sector-related meetings will be held at the TRT Industry Terrace, set to open in the festival area.

Forty-nine films in the feature films, short films, documentary films and student films categories will compete for the "Heart of Sarajevo" award.

The festival began 29 years ago to erase the traces of the 1992-1995 war in Bosnia and Herzegovina and make the city a center of culture and art again.

Past festival attendees included Robert de Niro, Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Daniel Craig, Orlando Bloom, John Malkovich, Gerard Depardieu, Morgan Freeman and Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan.

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