SARAJEVO - Agence France-Presse
U.S. actress Angelina Jolie smiles at fans before the 18th Sarajevo Film Festival July 7, 2012. REUTERS Photo
US superstar Angelina Jolie, whose recent directorial debut dealt with the 1992-95 war in Bosnia, arrived yesterday as a special guest of the Sarajevo Film Festival.
Jolie is to be made an honorary citizen of Sarajevo during her stay, an honour first announced in April, for her efforts in "keeping the truth about wartime events in Sarajevo and Bosnia-Hercegovina alive".
The award is given by the Sarajevo county every year to a foreign national who promotes humanity, democracy and tolerance.
Jolie's film "In the Land of Blood and Honey" -- shot in 2010 with several actors from the former Yugoslavia, and premiered in 2011 -- dealt with the issues of war crimes.
While the project initially sparked concern in Bosnia, once it was shown, most victims' groups welcomed it as objective and sincere.
Jolie arrived without Brad Pitt but with at least three of their children on board a private plane at Sarajevo's airport around 1400 GMT, an AFP photographer said.
She attended a workshop for young film artists from 13 countries, held on the sidelines of the 18th Sarajevo Film Festival, organisers said.
"The Sarajevo Film Festival is such an important event to focus the world's attention on the art, the music and the immense talent in the region," Jolie was quoted as saying in a statement issued by organisers.
Jolie spoke about her experiences of numerous visits to conflict or poverty-stricken areas in her role as UNHCR goodwill ambassador.
The Sarajevo Film Festival -- born as an act of resistance when the Bosnian capital was under siege during the 1992-1995 war -- has has grown to be one of the largest in Europe.