Photo courtesy of Kosovo Cinematography Center

Kosovo Selects ‘Looking for Venera’ for 2023 Oscars

A movie written and directed by Norika Sefa about a quiet teen in a small village is Kosovo's choice for Best International Feature Film at the 95th Academy Awards.

On September 14, the Kosovo Cinematography Center, KCC, announced that Looking for Venera, a film written and directed by Norika Sefa and produced by Besnik Krapi, had been selected as Kosovo’s candidate film for the 95th Academy Awards.

This film portrays a quiet, taciturn teenager named Venera who lives in a small village in Kosovo. At home, where three generations are huddling together in a small house, she has hardly any privacy.

Lum Çitaku, the head of KCC, said the film makes audiences connect with each character.

“The film makes you observe from a distance, while at the same time connects you with each character. We believe that the world needs authentic filmmakers, and Norika Sefa’s unique approach and language makes the film a worthy candidate for this competition,” Çitaku said.

He expressed happiness that a film which reflects the life of a teenager in a small village had been selected to represent Kosovo at the 95th Academy Awards.

“I am especially delighted that ‘Looking for Venera’, a finely crafted world of a teenage girl, and a work of almost ethnographic sensory fiction of a small village, has been chosen to represent Kosovo on the world’s biggest cinema platform,” added Çitaku.

The selection committee was composed of filmmakers Ismet Sijarina, Blerta Basholli, Samir Karahoda, Visar Morina, Alban Uka, Valmira Hyseni and Enis Saraçi.

Actors include Kosovare Krasniqi, as Venera, Rozafa Çelaj, Erjona Kakeli, Basri Lushtaku, Bleon Makolli, Fatushe Nushi, Ajan Zharku, Ermal Bilalli, Tristan Halilaj, Shend Miftari, Anisa Ismajli and Sheqerie Buqaj.

Looking for Venera is a co-production between Kosovo and North Macedonia, supported by the Cinematographic Center of Kosovo, the Film Agency of North Macedonia and the municipalities of Pristina and Kaçanik.

Nomination voting runs from January 12 to January 17, 2023. The Oscar nominations will be announced on January 24, 2023. The final vote is on March 2 through to March 7, 2023. The 95th Oscars telecast will be broadcast on Sunday, March 12.

Kosovo competed for the Oscars in 2021 with Hive, a film directed by Blerta Basholli, which entered the shortlist for nominations.

In 2016, the Kosovar-British film Shok, with Kosovar actors and directed and written by the Briton Jamie Donoughue, was nominated. That film described the impact of the war in Kosovo on children.

15/09/2022 - 16:09

15 September 2022 - 16:09

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