Presenting this Year’s Jury!

Escort, r. Lukas Nola

The festival program includes three films by our jury members.

Cinehill Motovun approaches and the program fills up with amazing titles arriving straight from prestigious festivals. As you casually study the program and get ready for the festival, we present you the people deciding this year’s winners. This time, the best titles in the feature and short competitions are decided by three juries.

The main program competition this time features as many as 13 films competing for the Propeller of Motovun, while the winning title will be chosen by a three-member main jury consisting of Croatian actress Barbara Nola, Slovenian film director and actress Tijana Zinajić and Sarajevo-native film director and producer Pjer Žalica. For everyone wishing to get better acquainted with our jury members and their work, we’ve included one of their films in special festival programs.

Out of competition in the main program, you’ll find Escort, a Croatian film directed by the recently deceased Lukas Nola, with Barbara Nola appearing in one of the roles. The story centres on Miro, a family man whose life turns into a nightmare of blackmail after he finds the prostitute with whom he spent the night dead in his hotel room bathroom. Two hotel employees initially help cover up the crime, but Miro’s accomplices see his predicament as an opportunity they can’t pass up. Barbara Nola is a permanent member of the Gavella theatre ensemble. She is known for a number of notable theatre, film and TV roles, among which Celestial Body by Lukas Nola stands out.

A special cinematic program will feature the sharp-witted comedy Bitch, a Derogatory Term for a Woman, Tijana Zinajić’s full-length debut, which became one of the most-watched films in Slovenian cinemas in 2022. It is a humorous take on millennials, an artist named Eva and her friends, stuck between fading youthful ideals and real life in the hard-hitting capitalism.

The same program will also include Pjero Žalica’s May Labour Day, winner of the Grand Prix at last year’s Warsaw Film Festival. The “tragedy attempting to become a comedy”, as described by its director, centres on Armin who, after 10 years of working in Germany, returns to Bosnia to surprise his father Fuda with the news that he is married. But Fuda is nowhere to be found, and the newspapers say that he was arrested on suspicion of war crimes. A versatile filmmaker, Pjer Žalica works as screenwriter, director, producer and editor, while his works have delighted the audiences of the world’s most prestigious festivals. He is best known for the film Fuse, which earned him a Silver Leopard in Locarno.

This year, competing for the main prize in the short film competition, Cinehill Shorts, is 25 films. The winner will be decided by Belgrade director Gorana Jovanović, founder and artistic director of the Mediterranean Film Festival Split, Alen Munitić, and Parisian film critic and festival programmer Léo Seosanto. The program winner enters the running for the European Film Award.

The FIPRESCI Award is decided by a three-member international jury of film critics and presented to the best feature film in the main program. The members of this year’s FIPRESCI jury are film critic and Cannes Critics’ Week short film programmer Léo Ortuno, Dutch film critic and editor of the Serie Totaal web portal Thierry Verhoeven, and Slovenian journalist and critic Veronika K. Zajdela.

Tickets for the festival program are already on sale. For those who plan to see a lot of films, the best-buy option is ticket packages which may be used at both locations and which are available for purchase for only two more days, until 9 July, or while supplies last. Individual tickets will soon go on sale online and will be available for purchase until the end of the festival. More information about tickets is available on the festival’s website:

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