On June 8, 2014, Stolica, the film directed by Elisabetta Lodoli (Documentary Film Instructor at IES Abroad Rome) and written/produced by Dr. Octavio di Leo (Center Director at IES Abroad Rio de Janeiro), was shown at the International Peace Festival 2014 in Sarajevo.
Stolica was produced in 2012 during an IES Abroad faculty seminar on Conflict Transformation to Rome and Bosnia. Having the film shown at the Peace Event—an event in Sarajevo organized to commemorate the 100 years since the beginning of World War I—was particularly important to those who participated in the creation of the film.
“After the war from 1992 to 1995, the people in Bosnia had grown weary of foreign journalists and academics benefiting from their stories without giving anything back,” explained Octavio. “This film was meant to give back to the community and contribute to the painful dialogue in a divided country. Over the past year, Stolica has been screened in Italy and the U.S., but I feel especially proud of the fact that it returned to its original place.”
Elisabetta and Dr. Ullrich Lohrmann (Center Director at IES Abroad European Union) attended the events in Sarajevo on behalf of IES Abroad, including the film’s screening at the Kino Obala. Among the attendees of the screening were some of the participants and collaborators of the documentary.
“I was very excited during the screening," recounts Elisabetta. “I was living again the moments behind the film, the ones that led me to realize the documentary, how I met all those people, traveling around Bosnia, meeting with pain but also with strength and life energy. I was moved when, at the end of the screening, a young woman came close to me and introduced herself as Fadila's daughter (the woman from Srebrenica in the film). Her mother couldn't make it because she was sick, so she sent her daughter who thanked me a lot for the truthful and beautiful film.”
Elisabetta has also been traveling around Italy to present the film, including most recently at the 70th ANPI Festival in Bologna. ANPI is the Italian National Association of Partisans who fought against Nazism and Fascism with American and British armies during the WWII. Many young Italian students were at the event, and afterwards Elisabetta served on a panel along with important novelists who write about other conflicts and processes for building peace. Such presentations of the film will hopefully lead to wider distribution of Stolica within high schools and universities in Europe.
To watch Stolica, visit https://vimeo.com/69529942 (password: malomalo2013).