World Premieres in the programme of the 28th Sofia International Film Festival

Sofia audiences are invited to almost 20 world premieres during the festival month of March! Among them are Yana Lekarska's feature debut "Because I Love Bad Weather" (Bulgaria), which is in the International Competition, Adonis Florides' "African Star" (Cyprus), which is in the Balkan Competition, Tsvetan Dragnev's "Balkan Black Box" (Bulgaria) in the Documentary Competition, Georgi Mukhadze's "When You're 17" (Georgia-Germany) in the Teen Competition and 9 films from the Bulgarian Short Film Competition.

The first meeting with the audience will be the co-production of Serbia, Moldova and Bulgaria "Megdan: Between Water and Fire" directed by Todor Chapkanov. The film tells the intriguing story of a former water polo player who wants to save his team, its glory and preserve the traditions of his community. He is forced to dive into the depths of the Balkan underworld, and in the chaos of events and fateful decisions, discovers that the line between victory and defeat is as thin as the surface of the water. The screenplay was written by Aleksa Balasevic, who is also one of the film's producers. The main role is played by Viktor Savic, and the Bulgarian participation is reinforced by the cinematographer Ivo Peichev and the editor Bohos Topakbashian.

The new film of the British Steven Lewis Simpson "Retrospect" was shot and produced entirely in Bulgaria, with the participation of Bulgarian actors. Simpson is the writer, director, actor, cinematographer and producer of the dramatic story starring a former secret police agent in Plovdiv who continues to spy on his neighbours, a suspicious foreigner who may be responsible for the disappearance of an Asian tourist, and the spy's charming granddaughter who forms a romantic relationship with the foreigner. The old man's controversial past gradually comes to light, while some of the people around him jealously guard their secrets, and others eagerly share their every move on social networks... We will see Steven Lewis Simpson himself as the foreigner, and the other roles are played by Simeon Alexiev, Yuliya Yordanova, Ivo Ignatov, Stefan Popov, Elena Kabasakalova.
One of the main roles in the film directed by Sharon Bar-Ziv "Wild Urge" (Israel-Slovenia) is entrusted to Samuel Finzi. The suspense-filled plot depicts the vicissitudes that a police investigator must go through in her desire to expose the indecent behavior of a famous and powerful lawyer - she confronts him, but also the demons of her past. At the intersection between the investigation and her emotional trauma, an unexpected denouement looms. The film is presented as a project in development in the Sofia Meetings programme, and this March is its world premiere in Sofia.

The documentary "Monolith Band" is the work of the writers and directors Dimitar Ilchev and Aleksandra Chakarova. Starring Tony Chambera, Pavel Vassev, Emmerich Ambil, Vesselin Vassilev, Dimitar Kovachev-Funky, Milen Savov, the narrative recreates the present and the past, as well as the creative process of the popular Bulgarian rock formation Monolith, painting a picture of their passionate dedication to music, and also the challenges of navigating the ever-changing landscape of rock. The film will have its world premiere on the last day of the 28th Sofia International Film Festival - March 31.  

Another documentary narrative dedicated to music is "Pulsating Hills" by writers and directors Todor Bashiyanov and Todor Karagyaurov, and its main character is the iconic music radio host Toma Sprostranov. Generations of Bulgarians have grown up with his records and voice! At 80 years old, he still hosts his popular radio show and holds the record for the longest practicing radio host on Bulgarian airwaves. In parallel, he visits festivals in search of the latest contemporary bands. And then comes the unexpected challenge! Tom, together with his records, faces his audience. This time not on the radio, but face to face, live. In the middle of his beloved Plovdiv in Kapana, music lovers from four generations are eagerly waiting for him. With its world premiere, "Pulsating Tepes" will open Sofia Film Fest in Plovdiv, after which there will be a special screening in Sofia.  

Among the films with a world premiere at this year's festival is also "Karaganda" by American director Max Weissberg, starring special festival guest and International Jury member Dimiter Marinov. After destroying a Russian air base in a botched arms deal, the protagonist, Vladimir, a Brooklyn gangster, must survive the ensuing war with the mafia and protect his family. Marinov stars as a mob boss who owns a waterfront diner in Brighton Beach. The actor will also star in the premiere of American director Milana Vayntrub's short film "Pickled Herring."  

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We look forward to seeing you at the #CINEMA!