Director Kusturica creates a film city

Director Kusturica creates a film city

VISEGRAD - Anadolu Agency
Director Kusturica creates a film city

The Andricgrad film city is located in the eastern Bosnian city of Visegrad. Although it was not finished yet, it already catches the eye of many tourists AA photo

Internationally acclaimed Serbian director Emir Kusturica has been establishing a film city near the historic Sokullu Mehmet Paşa Bridge in the eastern Bosnian city of Visegrad. Works will be finished soon for the Andricgrad film city.

Andricgrad Director Yan Marjanovic said that the film city looked like a time tunnel particularly with its architectural structures. Stating that the examples of the Ottoman architecture were seen in the entrance of the city, Marjanovic said, “The main street of the city has structures from the Austrian-Hungarian period. There is also the Ivo Andric Institute, which was constructed for the memory of Nobel laureate writer Ivo Andric as well as a theater, hotels and the municipality building.” A church in Adricgrad’s Njegos Square is the pearl of the project, according to Marjanovic, saying that the stones used in the construction of the church had been brought from the central Anatolian Turkish province of Konya. He said that although it was not finished yet, Andricgrad had already caught the eye of many tourists. “In the first half of this year, the film city was visited by some 50,000 tourists, including Turks, too,” he added. Marjanovic said that tourists would also be provided accommodation opportunity when a hotel, which is still under construction, was finished. He said that the city had changed the visual of Visegrad city and revived the social and cultural life in the region.

Serbians pleased with Andricgrad but Bosnians not

A Visegrad local Mileva Petsikoza said that they were pleased with the construction of Andricgrad, adding, “A new thing is happening in the city. It is not important to me who is constructing the Andricgrad. Our city is more beautiful with this film city.”

Jelyko Sukurovic, who came from Serbia to see Andricgrad, said that the film city was a very beautiful and it would draw more people when the works were done.

However, Bosniacs living in Visegrad claim that Andricgrad would make people forget the genocide committed by Serbian soldiers against Bosnians living in this part of the region.

Head of the Visegrad City Council Sulyo Feyzic defended the idea that the construction of Andricgrad negatively affected relations between people of different ethnic origins in the city. Noting that Bosniacs saw Andricgrad as a handicap for the improvement of bilateral relations, Feyzic said, “We did not want the construction of Andricgrad but it was built. We cannot escape from this fact. Then we need to work for Andricgrad to be good for two nations living in the city. We need to do it at least for the people who gave their land for this project.”

The construction of the project started in 2011 near the Sokullu Mehmet Pasha Bridge, which is under the protection of UNESCO.

With the completion of church and hotel constructions, Andricgrad is scheduled to open next year. The film city, which covers an area of 23,000 square meters, includes examples of 50 stone structures from the Ottoman, the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Yugoslav Kingdom.



Emir Kusturica. DHA photo

Last year, Emir Kusturica was accused of cultural vandalism after stones from a historical castle were used in the construction of the film city, Andricgrad. “Kusturica is involved [in the project] it to take revenge. He wants to take revenge against the Bosniak nation, of which he was a part in the past. It is ‘vandalism’ to build a new structure by damaging another piece of cultural heritage,” famous academic Bosniak academic Muhammed Filipovic said.

Kusturica, however, hit back at the accusation. Noting that Bosnian academics and scientists were free to express their ideas.