The Festival of Slovenian Film (Festival slovenskega filma or FSF) is classified as a national film festival as it offers an annual review of domestic film and television production. It is organised by the Slovenian Film Centre and it is staged annually in September or October, the length varies according to annual film production (usually for 4 to 5 days), at the Portorož Auditorium in the seaside resort of Portorož. It was established in 1991 as the Slovene Film Marathon but its roots go back to 1973 when the Slovene Film Week was organised for the first time in Celje. The main festival award is the Vesna Award.
The Festival of Slovenian Film is the main yearly event for Slovene cinema, Slovene film professionals and the general public, as well as for film experts and professionals from abroad (journalists, scholars, producers, distributors and buyers). Besides screenings, conferences on a topical issue related to film such as film production, funding, acting, scriptwriting, or international links and foundations are organised, as well as presentations of different projects related to Slovene cinema (DVDs, books, web pages …). On each festival day, after the morning screenings, press conferences are organised where journalists and the general public can meet with directors, producers, actors and other members of the casts of films presented in the programme.
Sections and awards
Although the festival is intended for the yearly overview of domestic film and television production, films are not automatically entered in the programme but are still selected by the programme selector. Films that are selected for the festival are divided into two main sections: the competition programme and the accompanying programme. Films selected for the competition programme are in the running for the Vesna Award (named after the Slovene 1954 film classic Vesna made by František Čap), bestowed by the festival’s three-member jury in 17 different categories. Other festival awards are: the Metod Badjura Award for lifetime achievement, named after the first Slovene film director of photography Metod Badjura and bestowed by the Association of Slovenian Filmmakers; the Kodak Award for best cinematography; the FIPRESCI Slovenia Award for Best Picture bestowed by a three-member jury of the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI), Slovenia. Awards are also given by various other associations and companies and by Stop Media magazine. After the festival, the awarded films are sometimes also presented in the Slovenian Cinematheque or at other venues in Ljubljana.
In the recent editions the following feature films have been declared the best films of the festival: Circus Fantasticus directed by Janez Burger and produced by Staragara – Ljubljana (2010), Archeo by Jan Cvitkovič and produced by Staragara – Ljubljana (2011), Boj za directed by Siniša Gacić and produced by Tramal Films (2014), Idyll, a horror film directed by Tomaž Gorkič and co-produced by Blade & 666 Productions (2015), Houston, We Have a Problem! by Žiga Virc (2016), The Family by Rok Biček (2017), My Last Year as a Looser by Urša Menart (2018) and Stories from the Chestnut Woods by Gregor Božič and Marina Gumzi (2019).