On October 4, as part of the St. Petersburg International Media Forum organized by ROSKINO with support from the government of St. Petersburg, the K.L.A.S. cinematography laboratory - created by prominent Russian film director Alexander Nikolaevich Sokurov - kicked off in the village of Repino on the shore of the Gulf of Finland.
Out of 500 short films submitted to the cinema lab's selection committee by young amateur filmmakers from 48 cities in five countries, 90 works were chosen, and the authors of these films are attending the training this week at K.L.A.S. The best of these films will compete for three prizes: the Grand Prix, Best Direction, and Best Screenplay. The winners will be selected by a jury consisting of director Alexander Sokurov, Seance magazine editor-in-chief Liubov Arkus, camera operator Sergey Astakhov, journalist Nikolai Solodnikov, architect Sergey Choban, and the French Consul General to the city of St. Petersburg Thibaut Fourrière.The thing is, in Russia these days thousands of young people are shooting "their own films," so to speak, on topics that they are truly concerned about, and which are forcing viewers to contemplate what is really hurting. This cinematographers' community is practically unknown to general audiences, because it exists only on the Internet and has no access to the big screen. The K.L.A.S. cinema lab is a workspace that provides non-professional filmmakers with the opportunity to have their work professionally critiqued. This approach, I am sure, will facilitate the discovery of new names and fresh ideas.
Film director and head of the K.L.A.S. laboratory Alexander Sokurov
The cinematography lab has organized daily lectures and creative meetings with famous cinematographers, including producers, directors, film critics, representatives from the organizing committes of famous film festivals. Visiting to the laboratory will be film director Andrey Smirnov, documentary filmmaker Viktor Kosakovsky, and producer Igor Tostunov. K.L.A.S. students will also attend master classes on screenwriting and directing led by Bakur Bakuradze, Nikolai Khomeriki, Alexander Rodionov and Liubov Mulmenko.
Daily 'showrooms' will be organized for all K.L.A.S. participants: presentations from leading international manufacturers of professional film, photo, and video equipment, in which these world-famous companies will present their latest shooting and editing technologies for the budget sector.