Honorary Heart of Sarajevo awarded to Charlie Kaufman

Charlie Kaufman, American screenwriter, director, producer, and Oscar® winner was awarded the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo for his exeptional contribution to the art of film tonight at the Coca-Cola Open Air Cinema.

"I am very grateful for this honour. I fell in love with this city when I came in 2008 and I still love it. I love the warmth of people. Last night we watched AFIRE by Christian Petzold. I loved the movie. Everyone was happy, they applauded. It was specific and different. I couldn't imagine being anywhere else. People went out and smoked and it felt like it represented the heart of the city. Coincidentally, I kept reading Semezdin Mehmedinović's book called 'My Heart' in English. I think this is the right time to mention it. Thank you very much. I'm honored", Kaufman said.

The Honorary Heart of Sarajevo was presented to Kaufman by Jovan Marjanović, the director of the Sarajevo Film Festival.

"For many years, both as a screenwriter and a director, Kaufman has been bringing laughter, sadness, comfort, empathy, to audiences worldwide, all within an aesthetic universe so uniquely his own that if we were to see just one scene from his film, it would be simply impossible to mistake it for the work of any other author. Charlie Kaufman is, in every sense, a special filmmaker whose films, filled with humor, prompt us to seriously contemplate human existence," Marjanović stated, as he presented Kaufman with the award.

After the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo was presented, the film ADAPTATION. by Spike Jonze was screened as part of the Open Air Programme of the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival. The script for the film was written by Kaufman. The roles were portrayed by Nicolas Cage, Meryl Streep, Chris Cooper, Tilda Swinton and Jay Tavare.

The Sarajevo Film Festival hosted Kaufman in its 14th edition and presented his directorial debut SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK to the festival audience in 2008.

ADAPTATION. brought Kaufman a Writers Guild of America award and an Oscar® for best adpted screenplay.

Kaufman was nominated for a Writers Guild of America Award, an Oscar® and a Golden Globe Award for his groundbreaking 1999 screenplay, BEING JOHN MALKOVICH, and won the Independent Spirit Award for Best First Screenplay.

His screenplay for Michael Gondry's 2004 film ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND won him a Writers Guild of America award and an Oscar® for Best Original Screenplay. In 2008, he won a second Independent Spirit Award, this time for directing the postmodern psychological drama SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK.

He also won recognition for directing the stop-motion adult-animation film ANOMALISA, which was nominated for best animated film at the Oscars®, Golden Globes and Annie awards. His latest feature film is the 2020 surrealist thriller I'M THINKING OF ENDING THINGS, based on the novel by Iain Reid. In 2020, he also published his first novel, "Antkind".

Charlie Kaufman is a true visionary, and his film legacy is undeniable, with BEING JOHN MALKOVICH ranked 74th on WGA's 101 Greatest Screenplays of All Time, and ADAPTATION. and ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND listed on the WGA's list of the 101 Best Screenplays of the 21st Century.

Before being presented the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo, Kaufman held a Masterclass today at the Festival Center (Bosnian Cultural Center).

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