“We have the right to talk about our history,” Emir Kusturica said.
Famous Serb filmmaker Emir Kusturica said in Belgrade on Wednesday that he is going to make a movie about Jasenovac in which 700,000 Jews, Serbs, Roma and anti-fascists were killed by Ustashas, and that the focus of future artwork will be an Austrian woman originating from Lika who was saving the children from this death camp.
“There is a wonderful idea here to make a story about how someone was saving the children, like Spielberg’s movie made many years after the Second World War. The above mentioned someone is a Serb woman originating from Lika, and the children were predominantly Serb children. There were, of course, the Jews and Roma,” said Kusturica at a joint press conference with Minister of Culture and Information of Serbia, Vladan Vukosavljević.
Kusturica did not provide more details about the future film, but confirmed that he will be a screenwriter, and that he will have associates while doing this job.
“I am sure there will be somebody else. My idea is first to write a synopsis, and then to engage someone else to work together on the screenplay,” Kusturica said, adding that he will make a movie about genocide in Sudan with the Americans.
He pointed out that two events determine the end of the Second World War – war criminals’ trip to South America and Partisans’ liberation of Jasenovac, when the war was actually over.
According to him, the Partisans actually took the documents from Jasenovac, thus enabling the compromise between Josip Broz Tito and the Vatican about not talking on Jasenovac to be made.
Vukosavljević pointed out that Serbian cinematography did not practically make any film about the genocide against Serbs in the Independent State of Croatia /NDH/, thus the Ministry wants to help it finally be done.
“We succeeded in reaching the principle agreement to let Kusturica deal with this topic and try to write the screenplay with the associates, whom he will choose. Then, we would try to implement another important project in 2020 or 2021, with the Ministry and Kusturica’s efforts,” said Vukosavljević.
Recalling that the world’s cinematography filmed numerous films about World War II, he said he wanted to encourage other authors to deal with the culture of remembrance.
Kusturica told that when he starts making a movie about Jasenovac, and when the time for it comes, he will ask for support from Republika Srpska and the Serbian member of the BiH Presidency, Milorad Dodik.
“Under the condition, of course, that the movie comes to life. It is now in our thoughts, and this is maybe the most beautiful phase, then there will be an idea that my good pal /Dodik/ help us,” Kusturica said.
When it comes to filming in authentic locations, such as Donja Gradina which was a part of the Jasenovac concentration camp, Kusturica said that the problem is that which is the most expensive, the construction of a camp, since there are no traces of it.
“This was a perfect crime which after more than 60, even 70 years, is getting a new life,” Kusturica said.