Sarajevo FF: Talk With Mila Turajlic

The theme was how to deal with archives in a creative way; it was a bit more than one hour skype conversation with Mila Turajlic talking to us from her home in Belgrade – the flat those of us, who have seen “The Other Side of Everything” know so well. Turajlic was excused not to be in Sarajevo, because of illness but as the fighter she is, she had prepared clips for the presentation and the conversation went very well giving the audience of primarily young people inspiration to their film work.

The first clip brought us back to the film Turajlic made in 2010, “Cinema Komunisto”, the scene from the partisan feature film (Battle of Neretva, 1969) where Tito has given the order

to blow up the Neretva Bridge. In the clip you see how Turajlic mixes fiction and documentary having wonderful interviews with a couple of film people, who took part in the film. How did you get “the old boys” to agree to take part, I asked. I met them again and again and had them talk about how it was and finally I had their ok. In the clip shown you also see how this place today is – with Turajlic’s words – a place of memory and commemoration.

From “The Other Side of Everything” Turajlic showed the scene, where the mother and friends at the dinner table talks about “Hafner’s Finger”, referring to the event in Parliament, where the old parliament member is warning Comrade Milosevic that Yugoslavia could fall apart if he proceeds with his Great Serbia politics. For Turajlic this scene makes her mother Srbijanka Turajlic become “the guide” for reading the archive of this excellent film (I have written a review of the film:

Third film is coming up – the trailer for the film about the lovely old cameraman Stevan Labudovic – working title “The Labudovic Reels” – that is, with Turajlic words, “an archival road trip with Stevan Labudovic, cameraman to Yugoslav President Tito and cinematic eye of the Algerian revolution, investigating the role of cinema in the liberation struggles of the Third World and reconstructing the birth of the Non-Aligned Movement…”. The trailer shown is wonderful, can’t wait to see the final result!

And finally some photos from the video installations made for MOMA in New York, “a commission to contextualise the story of Yugoslav architecture and modernisation”… well to have made two films, have one that soon is coming up and to be at one of the most famous museums in the world, Bravo, and thanks for the conversation, where we also had the chance to say hello to her mother Srbijanka. More about Mila Turajlic on

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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