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Facts Made Film: Researching Fiction

12.02.2019 - Danielle Macdonald, Labina Mitevska , Teona Strugar Mitevska, Guy Nattiv, moderated by Djamila Grandits

The following is inspired by true events. This session invites two directors and actors to chart the metamorphosis of facts into fiction. Macedonian director Teona Mitevska and actress Labina Mitevska, discuss the making of God Exists, Her Name is Petrunya (Competition), dealing with a unique religious ceremony in Eastern Macedonia. They are joined by director Guy Nattiv and actress Danielle Macdonald, who come to the Berlinale with Skin (Panorama), the biographical drama of an American neo-Nazi in search of redemption. Taken as case studies, these films raise fascinating questions regarding the transposition of real events into fiction, the opportunities for political commentary this process offers and the difficulties an actor can face when asked to embody a contemporary.


Danielle Macdonald

photo of Danielle Macdonald
Born and raised in Sydney, Danielle Macdonald moved to LA in pursuit of acting at the age of 18. She stars as the title character opposite Jennifer Aniston in DUMPLIN’, currently streaming on Netflix, and can also be seen alongside Sandra Bullock in Susanne Bier’s BIRD BOX. She is best known for her breakout role as Patti in PATTI CAKE$. She also stars in Guy Nattiv’s Oscar-nominated short film SKIN and in the feature version of the film, together with Jamie Bell.

Labina Mitevska

photo of Labina Mitevska
Labina Mitevska is a producer at Sisters and Brother Mitevski, a production company she established with her siblings. Following a successful acting career (she was a Berlinale Shooting Star in 1998), she moved into producing. Her credits include her sister Teona Mitevska’s GOD EXISTS, HER NAME IS PETRUNIJA, which is showing in this year’s Berlinale Competition. She co-produced Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s THE WILD PEAR TREE, was chosen for Producers on the Move in Cannes, and is a member of the European Film Academy.

Teona Strugar Mitevska

photo of Teona  Strugar Mitevska
Born in Skopje, Teona Strugar Mitevska divides her time between Macedonia and Brussels. She had her first experience in film as a child actor and later took a degree in graphic design and studied film at the Tisch School of the Arts in New York. Her short film VETA screened at Panorama; she returned to the Berlinale with her features I AM FROM TITOV VELES, which was screened at over 80 festivals around the world and won more than 20 awards, THE WOMAN WHO BRUSHED OFF HER TEARS and WHEN THE DAY HAD NO NAME.

Guy Nattiv

photo of Guy Nattiv
Guy Nattiv studied film and television at the Camera Obscura School of Art in Tel Aviv. He directed short films and commercials for over ten years. His short THE FLOOD screened at the 2002 Berlinale where it won a Crystal Bear. From this work he developed a feature of the same name which screened in the Generation section. He attended Berlinale Talents in 2003 and presented his short STRANGERS (co-directed with Erez Tadmor) at Panorama in 2004. SKIN is the first feature film he has made in the US. His short of the same title is nominated for an Oscar.

Moderated by

Djamila Grandits

photo of Djamila Grandits

Djamila Grandits lives and works in Vienna. Since 2010, she has curated and produced various cultural projects, short and documentary films, as well as festivals. She has curated events such as Frameout – Digital Summer Screenings and This Human World – International Human Rights Film Festival. She is currently a BKA fellow for cultural management at Brunnenpassage and is involved in political initiatives such as #KlappeAuf and Es ist wieder Donnerstag!.