A Georgian film still in the making has scooped a major prize at the Cottbus Film Festival in Germany, and the winnings will cover some post-production costs and ensure the film emerges as a finished product.
A black comedy film titled Venice by Georgian film director Rusudan Chkonia won the Post Pitch Award and €25,000 at the November 5-6 Connecting Cottbus event, which was part of the Cottbus Film Festival that brings together filmmakers from all over the world for co-producing projects.
The prize was awarded to Venice after judges of the Connecting Cottbus East-West Co-production Market selected the film from other local and international works.
Budgeted at €800,000, Venice received financial support from the Caucasian Film Service and assistance from the Georgian National Film Centre to raise €82,000 of the targeted funding goal before the Cottbus award.
The film’s plot tells the story of the struggle of residents living in an unfinished residential complex. The group are given a chance to finally complete the building’s construction after seven years of delays and issues but each need to compromise to achieve the goal.
Chkonia directed the project with support from Nikê Studio and with producer Vladimer Katcharava of Tbilisi-based 20 Steps Production.
Chkonia’s first feature film Keep Smiling won the 2013 Napoli Film Festival’s top prize and screened in the Venice Days section at the 69th Venice Film Festival.
Two other Georgian productions also screened at the Cottbus Festival. Tato Kotetishvili’s filmOgasavarafeatured in the Short Films competition and Mohsen Makhmalbaf’s film The President was presented in the Specials category.