An appeal from the international community of film scholars, cinephiles and archivists:
Avala Film, the former Yugoslavia’s oldest film studio – which was at the heart of Mila Turajlic’s 2010 internationally acclaimed documentary CINEMA KOMUNISTO – is to be sold by the Serbian government for the value of the terrain that the “film city” stands on. Adding to that, the entire catalogue of films produced by Avala has been included in the sale, which is scheduled for April 22nd, 2015.
As a countdown to the sale, the team behind CINEMA KOMUNISTO have started a campaign (“The final screening”) meant to raise awareness and stop the sale, thus avoiding the loss of a significant share of the cinematic heritage of the former Yugoslavia. This is a very sad moment for Avala and for all those aware of the complex ways in which the film studios of the former communist Eastern and Central Europe have shared both the turbulent pasts and the uncertain
presents of their respective countries.
“Between 1947, when it made the first post-war Yugoslav film “Slavica” to today, Avala Film produced a staggering 200 feature fiction films, and over 400 documentaries and short films, as well as numerous co-productions, starring Sofia Loren, Alain Delon, Orson Welles, Omar Sharif, Anthony Hopkins… No book has ever been published on the history of the studios, nor is there an archive. There are almost no scripts, production documents, stills, or evidence of any kind of this cinematic heritage.”
More information can be found here:
You can sign the petition here (scroll for English):