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Talent Workshop


Dear artists and Festival participants, dear guests and friends!

Milan Bandić, mayor of the city of Zagreb

It is my honor to greet you and wish you a warm welcome to the 4th Jewish film festival here in the Croatian capital. In Zagreb, on an annual or biannual basis, prestigious film festivals with international character are held, as the World festival of animated film (Animafest), the International festival of documentaries (ZagrebDox) and others.

The City of Zagreb and the Republic of Croatia are especially proud to host the only worldwide film festival with a Jewish topic, a festival that through its program educationally transmits the truth about the Holocaust, developing tolerance and dialogue between different cultures and nations, inspiring a culture of peace, collaboration and coexistence.

We in Croatia also spell and write the Jewish Holocaust, in contrast to other holocausts, with a capital ”H”, because it is a historic truth that the Jewish Holocaust lasted the longest, covered the biggest space of the planet earth and had the most casualties.

In number small but high in respectability, the Jewish community is more present in the Croatian public life in the last 200 years. As one of the rare countries we like to emphasize that the Croatian parliament equalized the civil rights of the Jews with other citizens in 1873. In Zagreb even before WWII, among others, the organ Židov (The Jew) was published, that promoted Jewish habits, tradition and culture. Today the culture, science and art of Zagreb and Croatia would be much poorer without the Jewish prominents in the field of medicine and music, construction and architecture, theatre, books and films …

Thanks to this Festival the audience in Zagreb has the possibility to acquire additional knowledge and insight into the Jewish way of life, their identity and tradition.

It is a special value of this year’s film review that it is dedicated to the Righteous among the nations. This high acknowledgement of the state of Israel was given also to some of our fellow-citizens and even new suggestions for citizens of our country are being considered.

This year the audience in Zagreb and film lovers of all ages, professionals and amateurs will enjoy the variety of film content: projections of feature films; film workshops, educational programs and debates; musical evenings and thematic exhibitions.

Because of all this I would finally like to thank the president of the Festival, the two-time Oscar winner, Mr. Branko Lustig, that he made Zagreb, in the last week of the month of May, a worldly film capital. All the participants of the Festival, the eminent guests from Croatia and abroad, I would like to wish a pleasant stay in our city.

Milan Bandić,

mayor of the city of Zagreb