Vake Park Film Movement Holds First Public Meeting

TBILISI - Members of Georgia’s Vake Park Film Movement held a public meeting last week where the group formally introduced their mission goals and strategies aimed at tackling the current problems in the small South Caucasus nation’s film industry.

The movement’s members, including Producer Tekla Machavariani, screenwriter Maka Kukulava, producer Nodar Nozadze, screenwriter Nestan Kvinikadze and director Vakho Jajanidze spoke about the poor and corrupt state of Georgia’s production companies, as well as ways to revive the industry through a series of independent competitions and festivals.

 “We’ve introduced our mission…to the people who attended the event and we would be happy if they joined us in our effort to change the current system radically. We are, and we want this process to be very open and transparent,” Machavariani said in an interview with Georgia’s Rustavi2 news agency.

“We’re not just a group of protesters. What we’re offering is an alternative to how the Georgian film industry can run,” added movement Giorgi Mumkhadze.

The first public meeting of the Vake Film Movement ended with a screening of “I am Beso”, by contemporary Georgian writer and director, Lasha Tskvitinidze.

The film is a story of a 14-year-old boy growing up in an impoverished Georgian village who dreams of becoming a rapper while growing up in a family with a father disabled after serving as a liquidator at the Chernobyl power plant, a mother who is the family’s sole breadwinner and a homosexual brother.

The 2014 film was nominated for Best Picture at the Sarajevo Film Festival.

Georgian films have caught the attention of international audiences in recent years, including Zaza Urushadze's Academy Award-nominated "Mandarins" (Tangerines) and Nana Ekvtimishvili's coming-of-age film "In Bloom" - named Best Picture at the Berlin Film Festival. 

Their success has given rise to a growing list of directors and writers who want to resuscitate the country's moribund film industry by producing quality, specifically Georgian films.

By Nino Gugunishvili

Edited by Nicholas Waller

13 September 2016 08:57