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The festival presented a total of 207 films from 54 countries from all over the world. Over 300 international guests came to Sofia in 2018, amongst them were directors, producers, festival directors as well as media and film experts.The Award Ceremony took place on the 16th of March in Hall 1 of the National Palace of Culture.




Ildikó Enyedi (Hungary) – Director, Jury President


Claudia Landsberger (The Netherlands) – Programme consultant, Producer


George Ovashvili (Georgia) – Director


Milan Maric (Serbia) – Actor


Ralitza Petrova (Bulgaria) – Director




SOFIA CITY OF FILM GRAND PRIX AWARD for best film in the International Competition for first and second films, amounted to 7 000 Euro provided by the Sofia Municipality, went to ‘3/4’ (Bulgaria-Germany) by director Ilian Metev.


SPECIAL JURY AWARD went to ‘Genesis’ (Hungary) by director Árpád Bogdán.


AWARD FOR BEST DIRECTOR went to Banu Sıvacı for her film ‘The Pigeon’ (Turkey) and was handed out by the American director Sean Baker.


JURY SPECIAL MENTION went to Mohsen Gharfaei for his film ‘Blockage’ (Iran).


JAMESON AWARD FOR BEST BULGARIAN SHORT FILM, amounted to 6 000 Euro, went to ‘The Transfiguration’ (Bulgaria) by director Stephan Ganoff.


JAMESON Special Mention AWARD was awarded to the short film ‘Shame’ (Bulgaria) by the director Petar Krumov.


The AUDIENCE AWARD was decided by the spectators’ vote for films from International and Balkan competitions in Sofia Film Festival’s programme and was presented to the film ‘Radiogram’ (Bulgaria-Poland), directed by Rouzie Hassanova, by European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society at the European Commission Mariya Gabriel.


DOMAINE BOYAR AWARD FOR BEST BALKAN FILM handed by Balkan jury president Andrei Plakhov (film critic and historian of cinema, Russia) and members Zaza Khalvashi (director and festival director, Georgia) and Yanko Terziev (film critic and journalist, Bulgaria), went to ‘Heights’ (Bulgaria-Macedonia) by the director Victor Bojinov.

The Balkan Jury handed SPECIAL MENTION to the film ‘Secret Ingredient’ (Montenegro-Serbia) by Gjorce Stavreski.


AWARD FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY handed by the international jury president Melody Gilbert (director and producer, USA) and members Zaven Sargsyan (director of Parajanov Museum in Yerevan, Armenia) and Lyubomir Mladenov (director, Bulgaria), went to the film ‘Miniature for Piano’ (Bulgaria) by Eldora Traykova.


The FIPRESCI Jury members Emanuel Levy (Canada), Claus Löser (Italy), Olga Markova (Bulgaria) handed out the FIPRESCI Award to the film ‘Omnipresent’ (Bulgaria) by the director Ilian Djevelekov.


The Award of the Bulgarian Guild of Film Critics for film from the Balkan Competition went to ‘Omnipresent’ (Bulgaria) by Ilian Djevelekov.


THE YOUNG JURY AWARD of the festival went to ‘Genesis’ (Hungary) by director Árpád Bogdán as the best film in the International Competition.


THE AWARD FOR BEST BULGARIAN FEATURE FILM handed by jury consisted of Lenka Tyrpakova (Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic), Elma Tataragic (Sarajevo Film Festival, Bosnia and Herzegovina) and Roberto Cueto (San Sebastian Film Festival, Spain) went to ‘3/4’ (Bulgaria-Germany) by director Ilian Metev.


Within the framework of the 22nd Sofia International Film Festival the SOFIA AWARD of Sofia Municipality for contribution to world cinema was presented to:


VASIL MIHAYLOV, actor (Bulgaria)

ABEL FERRARA, director (USA)

ROMAN BALAYAN, director (Ukraine)


At the 15 edition of SOFIA MEETINGS the following awards were handed out:


Nu Boyana Film Studios presented for the third year in a row  Sofia Meetings Danny Lerner Grand Prix for Best Project in the main sections. For the FIRST TIME in 2018 the AWARDS were TWO. Тhe largest film production studio in Eastern Europe will back up two of the projects with a prize of 50,000 Euro in services and a cheque for 5,000 Euro. The award went to the projects WOLF (Ireland), presented by the director Nathalie Biancheri and the producer Jessie Fisk, and THE TROJAN CRISIS (Bulgaria), presented by the director Francois Nouguies and the producer Martichka Bozhilova.


Cinelab Romania Award – 25,000 Euro in post-production lab services was presented to the project MARCH.APRIL.MAY (Russia) by the producer Vlad Ketkovich and the director Andrey Gryazev.


Focusfox Studio (Hungary) Award equal to 10,000 Euro in post production services went to the project JA SAM ANA (Italy) by the director Ado Hasanovic and producer Massimo D'orzi.


Young Producer Award – Yapimlab (Turkey) will invite one producer for one week project consultancy in Istanbul or Antalya, during International Antalya Film Festival, and offer network possibilities within Turkish industry (equal of 5,000 Euro). The award went to the project DUO (Spain), presented by the director Meritxell Colell and the producer Belén Sánchez.


EastWest Filmdistribution Award – script consultancy (equal of 5,000 Euro) with Steven Goldsmith, an Irish-American script doctor and writer, went to the project THE CROWN OF CREATION (Hungary) by the director László Csuja and producers Anna Eszter Nemes and András Muhi.


MFI - Mediterranean Film Institute - Award - a scholarship for one of the projects from Sofia Meetings to participate at MFI Script 2 Film Workshops, went to CRISEA IV (Romania), presented by the director Vladimir Dembinski and the producer Bogdan Craciun.




Balkan Film Market Award for the best project in the FIRST FILMS FIRST selection went to the project LIFE BEATS REALITY (Romania), presented by the director and producer Andrea Valean. The prize grants the winning FFF project an invitation to an official selection of the next Balkan Film Market.


GoEast Award for the best pitch in the FIRST FILMS FIRST selection went to the project DAJNA (Albania-Germany), presented by the director Christos Netsos. The prize grants the winning FFF participant an invitation as a special guest to the East-West Talent Lab during the next edition of goEast Film Festival in Wiesbaden.


For further information, please contact

The Press Office of Sofia International Film Festival

Svetlana Damianova


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