Georgian-French film school to open for hundreds of international students

  • Students from Georgia and abroad will receive artistic and production education for their film projects at the new school. Image: screenshot from Imedi TV program., 12 Feb 2019 - 18:50, Tbilisi,Georgia

Hundreds of aspiring filmmakers, producers and promoters will be able to develop their talent at a brand-new international cinema school in Georgia, set to open next year in a project by the acclaimed Babluani family of cinema professionals.

The initiative for the Georgian-French academy, designed for local and foreign students, comes from directors Temur and Gela Babluani and also involves TV host Olga Babluani.

The group is aiming to capitalise on the international success of Georgian film scene over the recent years and provide opportunities for emerging talent in the country with the school.

The project for the academy comes from filmmakers Temur (right) and Gela Babluani.

Gela Babluani told Imedi TV reporters the project would seek to differ from individual cinema academies in countries of the Caucasus by becoming a region hub for the profession.

His father Temur also spoke to reporters, saying the founders planned to invite “very renowned and experienced filmmakers” to lead classes at the institution.

Students looking to join the school will be able to pick from more than a dozen specialisations including not only artistic directions but also production, promotion and networking for film projects — the latter coming from TV host Olga Babluani.

The group has already received interest from European companies that would produce film equipment for the institution and said the school would establish a scholarship for the most successful students.

The project for the school grounds includes a dormitory for those studying at the academy, in addition to two filming locations and other facilities.

The school grounds includes two pavilions for filming practice for prospective students, in addition to other facilities. Image: screenshot from Imedi TV program.

Temur and Gela Babluani are recognised for their contribution to new independent Georgian cinema in the 1990s and 2000s, before the recent, internationally recognised wave of films from the country in the 2010s.

While also known for their separate film projects, their collaboration on the 2005 feature 13 is particularly notable among cinema enthusiasts in Georgia and abroad.

Directed by Gela under supervision of Temur and also featuring George Babluani in the principal role, the noir thriller was distinguished with a range of international prizes including a European Film Award, Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize and two wins at Venice Film Festival.

Their initiative follows the opening of the Caucasus School of New Cinema in Tbilisi in 2016 — an unrelated film institution project — and plans for a launch of a film institute in the country by famed director David Lynch.

The school of the filmmaking family is expected to receive its first students next year.