Polish film director honoured at film festival in Sarajevo

FEHIM DEMIR/PAP/EPA

Polish Oscar-winning director Pawel Pawlikowski was honoured for his "exceptional contribution" to film during the 2019 Sarajevo Film Festival in the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

On Friday evening, during the opening ceremony, the festival's top honour was bestowed upon Pawlikowski, as well as the Mexican director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu.

In accepting the "Honorary Heart of Sarajevo" award, the Polish director said, "I've seen Sarajevo through different stages, before the war, during the war, after the war, and it always aroused great emotions in me." He added that Sarajevo has a "very complicated heart, full of paradoxes, full of contradictions, but it is a very strong heart, a heart that's stronger then ideologies, nationalism."

One year ago, Pawlikowski's film Cold War, which was nominated for an Oscar, inaugurated the Sarajevo Film Festival, while in 2015, another film by the Polish director, Ida, was awarded the Oscar.

The film festival in Sarajevo, established in 1995 as an "act of resistance" against hatred and war, attracts numerous cinema stars from around the world every year.