Emir Kusturica


A Serbian film director. Born in 1954 in Sarajevo. Graduated in film directing at the prestigious Academy of Performing Arts (FAMU) in Prague in 1978. During his studies, he was awarded several times for his short movies including Guernica (1978), which took first prize at the Student’s Film Festival in Karlovy Vary. After graduation, he directed several TV movies in his hometown, Sarajevo. In collaboration with the screenwriter Abdulah Sidran in 1981, he made the successful feature debut Do You Remember Dolly Bell? (1981) which won the Silver Lion for best first feature at the Venice Film Festival. Their subsequent work, human political drama When Father Was Away on Business (1985) unanimously won top prize at the 1985 Cannes Film Festival as well as FIPRESCI prize and was nominated for the Best Foreign Language film Oscar. In 1989 he won the Best Director award at Cannes for Time of the Gypsies (1988), a film about the life of a gypsy family in Yugoslavia scripted by Gordan Mihic. His first English language movie, Arizona Dream (1993) starring Johnny Depp, Jerry Lewis and Faye Dunaway and scripted by his USA student, David Atkins was awarded the Silver Bear at the 1993 Berlin Film Festival. Underground (1995), a bitter surrealistic comedy about the Balkans, scripted by Dusan Kovacevic, won him a second Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 1995.


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