Early History of Foreign Filming in Croatia – “Princess Coral, 1937


Movie: Princess coral (in the original: Die Korallenprinzessin)

Year: 1937

Director: Victor Janson

One of the biggest blockbusters of the 1930s, in which played Ita Rina and was produced by Hitler’s NSDAP party. After the screening, the German propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels banned that Slavs ever again appear in German films.

In prewar Dalmatia filming was often, but “Princess coral” is with “Winnetou”, perhaps the most famous film of that era. Mostly because of the role of Ita Rina, now a crossword puzzle star, once very popular actress who has made a great career in Germany, the former film mecca of the world. Another actor was Svetislav Ivan Petrović, who was very engaged around the shooting of the film in order to give his home country a big co-production – explains Daniel Rafaelić.


Shooting of melodramatic adventure storie set on the Dalmatian islands, journalists followed closely. What stands out from today’s perspective, is that this movie unlike other escapist films of that era has pronounced social component, which at that time was rare.

In German cinemas movie did not perform well, mainly because of Goebbels who mockingly called it “Princess Cossacks“ trivial piece in which the only good was the role of Germany’s Hilda Sessak. The film was not banned, but received no predicate which guaranteed a large number of viewers.

Even the highly attended premiere in the former Yugoslavia was not a success. The local spectators were disappointed by demonstration of our customs and costumes.


The best film critic of the time Ivan Goran Kovačić has written that it is the obscene film for the Croatian culture, the work that is the embodiment of the German colonial approach and in his article he asks: How long will we tolerate such a relationship? Judging by articles from newspapers, film succeeded only in Osijek, but it is because Ita Rina came there- adds Rafaelić.

Clip from the film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TkyA8PcmCSo


It is interesting that in parallel with the “Princess of coral” part of the same team shooted so. culture-film, short feature-documentary: Song of the Adriatic, in which starred locals. Originally called “In Banner Kaiser Diokletians”, translated “Under the banner of the Emperor Diocletian,” the film at the premiere in Berlin in 1937 received tremendous political support of the government of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, led by Milan Stojadinović, as the first in a series of joint film projects that Germany and the Kingdom of Yugoslavia should achieve. Due to obvious reasons, that has not happened, and the movie has remained only a footnote in the literature.

Film Song of the Adriatic, in the German Federal Archive found Leon Rizmaul of association Kinofon founded with Daniel Rafaelić and whose specialty is search film archives and search for valuable titles as is the Song of the Adriatic. Rafaelić and Rizmaul searched for the film several years.

Sunčana Ivančić



Alexa SXT Plus & Angenieux Optimo Anamorphic Zooms


For those who did not attend recent presentation of Arri cameras, including the latest addition, Alexa SXT Plus, on this link You can check short test movie, shown during the presentation.  Streets of Zagreb were shot with Alexa SXT Plus with Angenieux Optimo Anamorphic Zoom lenses (30-72 & 56-152 A2S A2S). No additional lights were used, format was 6: 5 ProRes 4K Anamorphic Cine, colored in the Da Vinci Resolve Suite.

2017. ASC Award nominees annaunced

415815340543e6602902f1646165476_v4-bigPhoto: Ludovic Littee

The American Society of Cinematographers announced nominees for the traditional 31st A.S.C. awards. Last year Vanja Černjul’s work on Marco Polo TV series was awarded with this, most prestigious American cinematography award. This year we again have a representative in the competition for the award. Igor Martinovic, H.F.S., Croatian cinematographer who has been living and working in America for number of years, was nominated in the category for Television movie, Mini-series or a Pilot episode for acclaimed series The Night of ,episode “Subtle Beast”.

Winners will be announced during the awards ceremony on February 4, 2017. Let’s look at the list of nominees and the trailer for The night of.

31st ASC Awards Nominees

  • Television Movie, Miniseries or Pilot:
    • Balazs Bolygo, HSC, BSC, for Harley and the Davidsons “Amazing Machine”
    • Paul Cameron, ASC for Westworld “The Original”
    • Jim Denault, ASC for All The Way
    • Alex Disenhof for The Exorcist “Chapter One: And Let My Cry Come Unto Thee”
    • Igor Martinovic for The Night Of “Subtle Beast”
  • Regular Series for Non-Commercial Television:
    • John Conroy for Penny Dreadful “The Day Tennyson Died”
    • David M. Dunlap for House of Cards “Chapter 45”
    • Anette Haellmigk for Game of Thrones “Book of the Stranger”
    • Neville Kidd for Outlander “Prestonpans”
    • Fabian Wagner, BSC for Game of Thrones “Battle of the Bastards”
  • Regular Series for Commercial Television:
    • Tod Campbell for Mr. Robot “eps2.0_unm4sk-pt1.tc”
    • John Grillo for Preacher “Finish the Song”
    • Kevin McKnight for Underground “The Macon 7”
    • Christopher Norr for Gotham “Wrath of the Villains: Mr. Freeze”
    • Richard Rutkowski for Manhattan “Jupiter”

“Tanhofer” monograph


Not overly extensive library of titles dedicated to the Croatian film and its authors recently enriches luxury monograph “Tanhofer”. Extensive work published by the Croatian Film Association and Croatian Film Directors Guild on 350 richly illustrated pages recalls the extensive work of Nikola Tanhofer, cinematographer, director and educator, founder of the Department of film and television cinematography at the Academy of Dramatic Arts, first president of Croatian Cinematographer’s Society.

Twenty authors from different generations collaborated on this edition. Essayistic interpretation of Tanhofer’s work as cinematographer and film director, and his memoirs and recollections of his students intruduce reader with numerous interests of this filmaker.

At the presentation of the monograph participated editors of edition, Diana Nenadić and Silvester Kolbas, film theorist Hrvoje Turković, Tanhofer’s colleague, also a former student, Enes Midžić and his friend Slavko Goldstein.


The monograph wrote: Zvonimir Berković,, Salvester Kolbas, Petar Krelja, Juraj Kukoč, Enes Midžić, Tomislav Mikulić, Dragan Jurak, Damir Radić, Silvestar Mileta, Jurica Pavičić, Slaven Zečević, Nenad Puhovski, Stipe Radić, Vicko Raspor, Ivo Škrabalo and Nenad Polimac.

Mihail Ostrovidov 1930 – 2016

ostrovidov_0_0_468x10000At age 87, died Mikhail Ostrovidov, legendary television cameraman.

Ostrovidov was working on first broadcasts of TV zagreb. He recorded the first program of this television, the first sports and drama programs, which were also broadcasted live.

He graduated in 1949 at the cinematography department, at Cinema School in Zagreb. He studied art history at the University of Zagreb and camera at the Academy for Theatre and Film Arts.

At the beginning of his career he worked as a camera assistant in the editorial board of the Croatian Film Journal in Jadran film. Later he worked as cameraman at TV Zagreb.

After his retirement in 1991 he continued to work as an associate of the Croatian Television, reporting from the Croatian War for Independance.

As a cinematographer has collaborated with many Croatian directors. For “Igra”, directed by Dušan Vukotić, Ostrovidov won the Grand Prix at the Film Festival in Mannheim. Among the other prizes ihe also won Golden Pen of Croatian Journalists Society (1980) and the “Otokar Keršovani” Lifetime Achievement Award (2002)

Histogram, Vectroscope, False Color…


The digital age has brought a completely new set of tools for assessing exposure, color balance, color saturation … Not long ago a fundamental cinematography tool was a light meter. Since evaluating image on the monitor is not very safe method, contemporary cinematographers have to adopt knowledge brought by digital technology.

Find out more about the world of Scopes – Histogram, Vectroscope, False Color …  in this B & H tutorial, hosted by Chase Kubasiak from Zacuto,

Video can be found at this link.

Annual Cinematography awards Nikola Tanhofer 2016 – Nominations

Goran Mećava, Mladen Matula and Željko Sarić were members of the Jury of the this year “Annual Cinematography Awards Nikola Tanhofer” for 2016 (projects premiered in 2015). This is the 3rd installment of this award by Croatian Cinematographer Society.

In total, 6 feature films, 3 television series and 16 short films entered the competition. The jury decided to nominate three projects in each category.

The winners will be announced and prizes awarded at this year’s Pula Film Festival.

These are the nominated projects:


Narodni hero Ljiljan Vidić” – director of photography Tamara Cesarec, c.c.s.

Kosac” – director of photography Branko Linta, c.c.s.

Život je truba”- director of photography Radislav Jovanov, c.c.s.


Počivali u miru” – director of photography Mario Sablić, c.c.s.

Nemoj nikom reći” – director of photography Damir Kudin, c.c.s.

Crno bijeli svijet” – director of photography Mario Sablić, c.c.s.


Polenta” – director of photography Mirko Pivčević, c.c.s.

“Belladonna” – director of photography Branko Linta, c.c.s.

Lijepo mi je s tobom, znaš” – director of photography Eva Kraljević

Applications for the “Nikola Tanhofer” award

From 1 March 2016 to 1 April 2016, works in all categories can be submitted to compete for the second annual Nikola Tanhofer award, presented by the Croatian Cinematographers Society.

As in the previous two years, the award will be presented for best achievements in cinematographic art with the aim to validate authorial distinctiveness and cinematographic excellence and to promote motion picture photography, visual and film culture.

The annual cinematographers’ award is presented in three categories:

1. Feature film

2. TV series

3. Short film forms

Eligible to compete for the C.C.S. annual award are works within the stated categories that premiered in cinema distribution or TV programs broadcasted in the territory of the Republic of Croatia in the period from 1 January to 31 December 2015.

In the category of short film forms, the condition for eligibility is being in competition at a domestic or foreign film festival held in the same period.

Natural and/or legal persons submitting their works to be considered for the annual HFS award are require do deliver at least one copy of the respective project in digital format to HFS.

In the category of TV series, it is sufficient to deliver one episode of the TV series in question.

The award decision will be made by a three-member jury, consisting of HFS members.

Works competing for the annual cinematographers’ award can be submitted by cinematography authors themselves (HFS membership optional), the production company under which the project was completed and HFS members, regardless of whether they have participated in the production of the nominated project.

The date and place of the award ceremony are to be announced.

In the pre-selection procedure, the jury will select up to three works that will enter the final consideration for the award. Nomination as one of the three works considered for the annual award in each category represents a recognition received by the author of cinematography in written form.

A received annual HFS award or nomination for the same can be used in the promotion of award or nomination winning projects.

The C.C.S. will publish the information on winners on its website (www.hfs.com.hr), notify the media and also report to IMAGO – European Federation of Cinematographers, of which C.C.S. is a full member.

Since I believe that we all care for promoting the film and visual culture, I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to submit the works that in your opinion meet the high artistic and aesthetic criteria that HFS upholds in its work.

Our efforts have been recognized by the Croatian Audiovisual Center (HAVC), under whose patronage the annual cinematographers’ award was established.

The works need to be submitted in writing to the address: Hrvatska udruga filmskih snimatelja, Britanski trg 12, 10000 Zagreb or by

email at kontakt@hfs.com.hr.

You can download the application form at the bottom of this post.

The contact persons for additional clarifications are Branko Linta (branko.linta@me.com) and Mario Sablić (mario.sablic@gmail.com).

Best regards,

Mario Sablić

President of the Croatian Cinematographers Society