The awards gala of the 1st International Television Festival "Heart of Europe" took place on Friday in the Warsaw studio of the Polish public broadcaster TVP. The jury, composed of international experts of the television industry from Central and Eastern Europe nominated the best productions for awards in six categories.
“I am certain that the festival will be recognised by the industry, both by television and experts, who will be able to establish fruitful cooperation and co-create our regional networks in the future,” said Jacek Kurski, the TVP chairman, opening the ceremony.
Among the nominated productions there were programmes submitted by broadcasters from Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Croatia, Georgia, Ukraine, Lithuania, Hungary, Slovakia, Serbia, Romania, and Poland.
“I am glad that our festival has become a meeting place for free nations speaking on their own behalf,” stated Mateusz Matyszkowicz, a member of the TVP Management Board, also present at the gala.
During the awards gala, the organisers symbolically left several empty seats in the audience for imprisoned journalists and authors from Belarus.
In the category of the best TV series, the jury awarded the first prize to the Croatian series "Dnevnik velikog Perice" ("Diary of the Great Perica") directed by Vinko Brešan. The second prize and the special award of the TVP Management Board, which was presented by Jacek Kurski, went to the creators of the Estonian series "Reetur" ("Traitor"), directed by Ergo Kuld.
In the category of the best feature film, the first prize was awarded to the Polish film "Żelazny Most" (“Iron Bridge”) by Monika Jordan-Młodzianowska. Mateusz Matyszkowicz presented the special award of the Polish Television Board to the creators of the Czech-German-French production "Veterán" ("Veteran") by Jan Hřebejko.
The first prize in the category of the best programme for children and youth was awarded to the Polish programme "Friends of Misia and Margolcia" by Jacek Sołtysiak.
In the category of the best entertainment production, the jury awarded the Lithuanian "Nacionaline Ekspedicija" ("National Expedition") by Andrius Lygnugaris. The Polish film "Agonia" (“Agony”), directed by Tomasz Knittel, won in the category of best documentary film.
In the digital category, prizes for first and second place were awarded to Czech internet projects: "Planet, our friend" and "Bozena".
The event’s main goal is to “help better define and strengthen the community of people in Central and Eastern Europe, and to become a forum for an artistic debate on the spirit of our region and space for joint activities that will help strengthen cooperation between the region’s countries.”