On an invitation from the International Poetry Biennial, Muzafer Bislim, a struggling poet and songwriter from the notorious Rom (Gypsy) enclave of Shutka, Macedonia, travels to Paris, France, in hopes of selling his life's work—a handwritten 25,000 word dictionary containing some of the oldest and most obscure words in the Romani language. But when the authenticity of the words comes into question, Bislim is forced to confront the sobering prospect of returning to his family empty-handed. The journey puts Bislim’s resolve to the test as he reencounters old friends who have successfully escaped Shutka's hardships and experiences the seduction and wealth of Paris. Flames of God is a story of language and identity at the edges of Western civilization, revealing one man's vision of the Romani people—united and literate.
Meshakai Wolf, born 1979, is an artist, photographer and documentary filmmaker. He studied philosophy and anthropology at a prestigious university in the United States and studied film at the New York Film Academy in New York City. His first film, Gussie, an intimate portrait of his 105-year-old great-grandmother, was screened at film festivals across the United States and won an award for best documentary feature at the Magnolia Film Festival. He is currently in production on a film about the traditional music and oral traditions of the Kurds in southeast Turkey and how they relate to the Kurdish people's current struggle for cultural and linguistic autonomy. In 2006, this project, Dengbêj: The Bards of Turkish Kurdistan, was selected to take part in the IFP Film Market's Documentary Work-in-progress section. He also serves as director of film and video projects for Cultural Cornerstones, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the creative voice in crisis-affected communities. He currently lives and works in New York City.
This film tells the story of Gregor Brajdič, his memories about the oppression of Roma people during the post Second World War period and the difficulties that his own family experienced during their life in Slovenia because of the permanent discrimination.
Sami is an Independent film maker that gives opportunity to young Roma people to learn and to express other Roma lives, experience and identity through artistic methods, producing documentary films. Sami has produced more than twenty documentaries, docu-fiction, and music videos on Roma culture, art, human rights and social life in Kosovo, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Poland, France and Slovenia in cooperation with partners Balkan Sunflowers, Luksus Produkcija, Koperativa, NISI MASA, Local Democracy Agency Nis Serbia, Local Democracy Agency Gjilan Kosovo, Dosta Campaign, etc. One of his films "Road to Home", was screened at Cannes Film Festival in 2007; it was the only Kosovar film presented.
In 2007, Sami founded Romawood, a production house focusing on Roma issues and population. Later that same year, he initiated the “Jekh Kham Jekh Sel/One Sun One Nation” project, which has made the most indelible impact on his life and work. Sami also took the initiative to one of the greatest Roma event in Kosovo as an artistic director of Rolling Film Festival – films made by and about Roma around the world.
Porraimos, which means “the devouring”, chronicles the Romani Holocaust through film and photographs from German archives, and the stories of Czech, German and Austrian Roma and Sinti survivors, as well as Dina Gottliebova, the Jewish artist who was ordered by Joseph Mengle to paint portraits of prisoners in the Gypsy Family Camp in Auschwitz.
Alexandra M. Isles
Musical project AfterPhurikane Gila is based on the anthropological investigation in Roma settlements in Slovakia. Jana Belisova collected hundreds of old Roma songs. After this research she organized workshop of the 6 interesting Roma singers with three professional musicians, who tried to make music together. And so a powerful multicultural project started. People from different cultural and social layers are singing and playing together and result is always breathtaking. Documentary film Cigarettes and songs records one week long meeting of singers and musicians in Veľký Slavkov, who in August 2009 recorded songs for the musical project AfterPhurikane Giľa in a local Evangelical church. It is a sort of "making of" this original musical project, document, which adds this music a new dimension of reality, humour, and absurdity.
Born in 1974, Marek Šulík was awarded in 2005 the ZENTIVA award for young filmmakers at the international film festival FEBIOFEST, Bratislava. Through his work which centers on the social documentary he often collaborates with non-governmental organisations. He often collaborates on projects as a director and editor. He teaches documentary film making on Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts in Bratislava and works also as a lecturer on film workshops.
Three Roma (“Gypsy”) children from a small Transylvanian town participate in a project to desegregate the local school, struggling against indifference, tradition and bigotry with humor, optimism and sass. A captivating, bitter-sweet and often funny story about hope and race.
Grand Jury Prize for Best US Documentary, SILVERDOCS 2011,Grain de Cinephage Award, FILMS DE FEMMES 2012
SILVER EYE AWARD for Best Eastern European Documentary 2011, GOPO AWARD for Best Romanian Documentary 2012
Tribeca Film Festival 2011, USA / SilverDocs 2011, USA/ Transilvania International Film Festival 2011, Romania / Visions du Réel 2011, Switzerland/ One World Prague 2011, Czech Republic / Thessaloniki Doc Fest 2011, Greece / Guth Gafa 2011, Ireland / Camden IFF 2011, USA/Astra 2011, Romania / DokLepizig 2011, Germany / DokuFest 2011, Kosovo / CPH:DOX 2011, Denmark/ Verzio 2011, Hungary / Inconvenient Films 2011, Lithuania / WatchDocs 2011, Poland/ Lone Star IFF 2011, USA / Romanian Film Festival at Lincoln Center 2011, USA/ One World 2011, Slovakia / DocEst 2011, Romania / This Human World 2011,Austria/ UNAFF 2011, USA/ EIDF 2011, South Korea / Documentarist 2011, Turkey / Trieste Film Festival, 2012, Italy / Journées de Soleure 2012, Switzerland / Etoiles Francophones 2012, France / Sebastopol Documentary Festival 2012, USA / One World Romania 2012, Romania / Cape Winelands 2012, South Africa/ Movies that Matter 2012, Netherlands / Films de Femmes de Créteil, 2012, France/ Human Rights Arts and Film Festival 2012,Australia
Producer and Director Mona Nicoara has been a human rights activist since the 1989 Revolution that overthrew the Ceausescu regime in her native Romania; she started working in ﬁlm as an Associate Producer for Edet Belzbergʼs Academy Award-nominated CHILDREN UNDERGROUND (2001)./p>
Co-Director and Co-Producer Miruna Coca-Cozma is a graduate of the BBC School of Journalism and of the Romanian Theatre and Film Academy; she has worked as a journalist for Antena1, TVR, TSR and France 5; her most recent project is OMAR PORRS: SORCIER DE LA SCENE (2008) for TSR.