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Jury 2022



JACKIE STOEV is a director and screenwriter. He has worked for over 20 years at Vreme Studio, Spectrum Studio, the Bulgarian National Television and the Bulgarian Film Centre as an assistant cameraman, assistant director and director. In the period 1969-96 he directed over 50 popular science and documentary films, as well as the feature films “Our Shoshkanini”, “The Adventures of Spas and Nelly” and “Divorces, Divorces”. Since 1996 he has been working as a freelance film director. He has won numerous important national and international awards, including the Golden Rhyton for the film “Counted Days” in 1977.

VALESKA GRISEBACH had studied German literature and philosophy in Berlin, Munich and Vienna, before beginning her career in film studies in Vienna. Her graduation film “Be My Star” won the International Film Critics Award at the International Film Festival in Toronto, as well as the Best Feature Film Award at the Turin Film Festival. In 2006, her second film “Longing” debuted at the Berlinale. The third film which was shot in the Rhodope Mountains and co-produced with Bulgaria, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2017.

WLADIMIR KAMINER is a German writer of Russian origin, screenwriter, playwright, theatre director, author of short stories and books for children, columnist in prestigious German publications and media. He was born in 1967 in Moscow.  In 1990 he arrived in Berlin. At that time he did not speak German at all. Today he is the most published and most translated German author abroad.  His first book “Russian Disco” (2000) is the novel that paved the way to the vast literary market.  Since March 2014, he has been writing his monthly commentary column ‘The Cinema of Kaminer’ in the epd Film magazine.


SVETOSLAV DRAGANOV is one of the most prominent and active Bulgarian documentary filmmakers. His filmography includes many films praised at numerous national and international festivals among which are “Life is almost beautiful” (2013), “City of Dreams” (2011), “Children of Friendship” (2009), “Life is wonderful, right” (2009). He is one of the leading film lecturers at NBU and has participated as a mentor in various specialized film workshops and professional training programs.

TSVETAN DRAGNEV is a talented Bulgarian documentary filmmaker. He graduated from the Film School of York University, Toronto, Canada (2000). His documentary feature film debut „Village People“(2017) was awarded with The Grand Prix for Bulgarian Documentary, SIFF 2020 and the special award from the IFF Szczecin 2020, Poland. His second film “Passengers”, co-directed with his father – the prominent documentary film director Zdravko Dragnev, won the Grand Prize for Best Feature Documentary at the first edition of RIFE in 2021.

Dr KATE VANOVITCH was born in the UK, but she has lived in Berlin for many years. She obtained a PhD on East German theatre from Cambridge University and she has a career as a creative translator. She has worked for the Berlin Film Festival, the Berlin art and film community, the Bulgarian Cultural Institute and many other cultural and artistic events.