Neum Underwater Film Festival started showing movie projections of underwater films – which find audience in good mood and joy . Non-official program named “Fest&Val” started at 5pm with projection of amateur and student films and it later continued with projection of films made by finalists (official selection for awards).
Ma y foreign and local guests came to Neum to enjoy the Festival and related programs as well as workshop amd masterclass held by Lorenzo Moscia from Italy.
Julijana Mikulic, executive producer of Neum Underwater Film Festival, opened festival with nice words: Welcome to 3rd Neum Underwater Film Festival. We are gathered here today in Neum to celebrate the value of underwater film which has the power to transfer onto us emotions of the authors, to start dialogues that surpass the country boarders, which can be seen by numerous members of jury which have joined us from England, France, Italy, Croatia, Turkey, Bosnia and Herzegovina… Art connects.
Guests were also greeted by the president of Municipality Council Neum, Danijela Matic and Italian ambassador Marco Di Ruzza. Marco Di Ruzza gave special thanks to founder of the Festival – Ivo Mikulic. He also mentioned uniqueness and excellence of Neum Underwater Film Festival on the world festival’s map and pointed out that there is a great cooperation of Italy and support of Italian embassy to cultural projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Movies from all over the world were shown during the Festival where you could see the richness of the underwater world through the eyes of variois style artists, students, local artists and amateurs. They show love towards the sea, rivers, lakes, diving and research. Some of the authors called out, through their films, for awareness of the importance of preservation of sea, rivers and nature in general.
Winners of Neum Underwater Film Festival 2023
Judges were following:
Mike Frankel USA, photographer;
Jurica Gašpar HR, chief editor of Morski.hr;
Gareth Bartlett UK, Grand Prix Neum Underwater Film Festivala 2021, diver, director, vlogger;
Ante Džono BiH, diver from Neum and president of Croatian diving club Neum;
Nikša Kaleb HR, professional extreme diver, world and Olympic volleyball champion;
Lorenzo Moscia ITA, multi-medial artist from Rome;
Marisa Cecchetti ITA, underwater choreographer and diving instructor;
Clayton Conn SAD, BBC-a journalist, underwater filmmaker, winner of Neum Underwater Film Festival 2022.
They have announced the following winners:
– “Polietileno”, film by Adriana Michelson (El Salvador) was declared as the best eco-film
– Best music award went to film from Mauricius, „Call from the Ocean“, from director Luka Dohert Bigar and composer Vinsent Bertelot, this category thropy goes to both, and composwe and to director of movie.
– Award to best camera went to the film “Visit the Thistlegorm“ by director Gilles Charvet from France
– Best film award – Grand Prix 2023 went to film „Reminder“ by Akin Bagcilar from Turkey.
Each year the audience votes for the best film. This year, by only 3 votes more than ‘Reminder’, the award went to film „Underwater painting“ by director Olga Belka. From audience point of view, film Reminder came second and film Schnellboot S57 is third.
Authors are in front row
On Saturda 19th, Neum Underwater Film Festival continued with workshop by Lorenzo Mscia from Italy. He presented on all his experience to attendees through the topic “How to tell an underwater story”. He won the award for best eco-film in Neum Underwater Film Festival last year 2022. He showed numerous photographs, underwater films, techniques he used in making the film and also some dangerous situations that have occurred in the process of filmmaking. All of the authors that have gathered from all around the world, shared their experiences and best practices.
Neum Underwater Film Festival is organized by Standard association managing Valentino Zeljko. Festival´s blue ambient and classical music really do go well combined, so cello professor and player Jelena Markovic Milićević played four short pieces between film projections. Audio and video production was done by Masters media from Capljina, all festival´s designed outfit was created by Antonio Slavujević.
Finalists – official selection 2023
Director Charles Blane Henderson
Director Alfred Schaschl
The Diver’s Son
Director Nick Sneath
Director Evgeniy Shaman
Director James Hughes
Director llonneau Dimitri, Guitet Maxime, Plata Lucas, Nguyen Ngoc Mai, Matuszczak Guilian, Argentieri Flore, Courtel Hug
Directors Matthieu Boivineau, Cédric Martin
Olga Belka underwater artist
Director AKIN BAGCILAR
I want to swim
Director Fu Le
Director Alisa Selishchava
Entre 2 eaux (in beTwin 2 waters)
Directors Caroline RAGUSA, Sylvain BES
Visit the Thistlegorm
Director Gilles Charvet
Director Rodrigo Jiménez Alcántara
Call from the ocean
Director Luca Doherty Bigara
I’ve Seen This Mermaid. 4 Real!
Director Evy Schubert
Director Gabriel Forestieri
Coral Reef Restoration
Director Asa Miller
THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA
Director EYLÜL YARKIN
Submitter Ad Michelson
Director Toni Kuran
Director Omar Ariel Ferreyra