A Sunday in the Country

The Idea

Ten young filmmakers from all parts of Europe meet with several prolific members of the European Film Academy over a weekend. The private atmosphere guarantees a platform for inspiration and for an open-minded encounter. It is an exchange between different generations of filmmakers from various cultural backgrounds – most important for the future of rising talents and the future of European film.

A Sunday in the Country was initiated in 1995 and is organised in co-operation with different local partners.

The Aim

The idea is to learn from each other through the exchange of experience and to build border-crossing personal networks.
The subjects that are intensively discussed vary from financing and production conditions in the home countries of the young filmmakers who are curious to learn about their colleagues’ personal conditions, their cultural backgrounds, their different ways of storytelling (local heroes - European audiences) and technical questions. The programme includes screenings of films of the participants and the attending EFA members.

Documentation and Publicity

The events are documented in the EFA Newsletter as well as on the EFA Website.

Some comments on A Sunday in the Country
“Three intense days, without a real timetable, without anything academic, three days of just allowing things to come up in a natural way that then transformed into some magical encounters … There was plenty of optimism in the air. This was an entirely new experience for both, us and the senior participants, who were discovering us and our films.”
(Maria Illiou, Greece, about A Sunday … at Ebeltoft, Denmark)

“It was a great weekend. Starting to forge links with filmmakers from other countries and trying to understand your work by listening to how they deal with theirs is a fantastic opportunity – one that I really cherish.”
(Trine Piil Christensen, Denmark, about A Sunday … at Bassano del Grappa, Italy)

“The initial purpose of the scheme, i.e. an exchange of information, above all of experience and views on some basic issues of the contemporary European cinema,….were continued outside the meetings and beyond the limited discussion time. Since the people who met on this occasion were not only of the same profession but also had similar creative experience, it was possible to forge fruitful links and hold a beneficial exchange of views …. It was interesting then to understand the present state and position of European cinema as a whole and to become aware of being a part of it, face to face with its future representatives.”
(Sasa Gedeon, Czech Republic, about A Sunday … at Bassano del Grappa, Italy)

A Sunday In The Country - A Brief History

2019: Italy

2018: Austria & Poland

2017: Mallorca, Wroclaw & Rügen (Germany)

2016: KosovoWroclaw (Poland) & Liepe (Germany)

2015: Ugljan (Croatia) & Wroclaw (Poland)

2014: Wroclaw/Poland and Luxembourg

2013: Palic / Serbia and Wroclaw / Poland

2012: India and Wroclaw / Poland

2011: Rozbitek / Poland

The EFA initiative brought together EFA Members Jakub Duszyński (distributor, Poland), Jan A.P. Kaczmarek (composer, Poland), Max Richter (composer, UK) and Monika Willi (editor, Austria) with young composers and filmmakers from Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain and the UK.

2010: Girona / Spain

Can Piferrer, a small 18th-century farmhouse somewhere in the green hills not far from the picturesque town of Girona was the venue for this year’s SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY. The annual encounter brings together young and up-coming European filmmakers with EFA members & experts, this time distributor Jakub Duszyński from Poland, German director/screenwriter Dani Levy and Spanish producer Antonio Saura.

2009: Cyprus

The 2009 encounter brought 10 young European filmmakers from Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, France, Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Sweden, UK together with EFA members László Kántor, Andreas Pantzis and Hervé Schneid as well as project and script consultant Gabriele Brunnenmeyer to the village Lofou on the island of Cyprus. A SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY was organised by EFA in co-operation with the Ministry of Education and Culture of Cyprus.

2008: Israel

This year’s SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY brought young documentary filmmakers together with EFA Members Hans-Robert Eisenhauer, David Fisher, Kirsten Niehuus, and Nino Kirtadzé. A SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY in Israel was realised in co-operation with the New Israeli Foundation for Cinema & TV.

2007: Malta

In co-operation with the Malta Film Commission, the European Film Academy organised A SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY in Malta. The participants came from Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Romania, Sweden, and Switzerland and met with EFA members Francine Brücher, Cedomir Kolar and Sophie Maintigneux.

2005: Motovun / Croatia

A SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY goes to Croatia!
Invited by the Motovun International Film Festival and EFA, young filmmakers from Ukraine, Switzerland, Denmark, Israel, Italy, Macedonia, Slovenia, Portugal, Croatia and Belgium came to Motovun in Croatia with their films and met with the EFA members Stefan Arsenijevic, Francine Brücher, Mike Downey and Nik Powell.

2004: Umeå / Sweden

Invited by the Umeå International Film Festival, A SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY took place in the North of Sweden. The participating EFA members were Hrafn Gunnlaugsson, Ventura Pons and Nik Powell, joined by young filmmakers from the Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Palestine, Poland, Spain and Sweden.

2000: Iceland

On the verge of the new millennium, A SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY deserved the most magic of all European places to meet. Could there be a more inspiring one than Iceland under the midnight´s sun? Icelandic director Hrafn Gunnlaugsson invited to his house in Reykjavik.

1998: Austria

EFA member and producer Michael von Wolkenstein invited to A SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY in Austria. At the very idyllic Traun lake ten young directors spent a weekend inspired by Austrian myths and accompanied by Austrian producer Veit Heiduschka and Icelandic director Hrafn Gunnlaugsson.

1997: Ebeltoft / Denmark

It was Henning Carlsen`s turn to be the host, this time in Ebeltoft (Denmark). Before the young directors from Eastern and Western Europe travelled all together to Ebeltoft to spend their Sunday under the roof of the European Film College, they had dinner at Carlsen`s home in Copenhagen, joined by EFA members Dusan Makavejev (director, Yugoslavia), Detlev Buck (director, Germany), Fridrik Thor Fridriksson (director, Iceland), and David Rose (producer, UK).

1996: Bassano del Grappa / Italy

Ten young directors were invited to Bassano del Grappa (Italy) which Italian director Ermanno Olmi calls his home. Henning Carlsen and Krzysztof Zanussi came down to Italy alongside with director Amos Gitai from Israel, to support Olmi who this time was the “godfather” of the group that made the SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY a day-and-night event.

1995: Laski / Poland

A SUNDAY IN THE COUNTRY was held in Laski (Poland) at Polish director and producer Krzysztof Zanussi´s country house. Besides Zanussi, Danish director Henning Carlsen and British producer Nik Powell attended as EFA members with Polish director Krzysztof Kieslowski joining them for an unforgettable Sunday morning encounter at the fire place.