Legendary directors ENZO G. CASTELLARI and SERGIO MARTINO at the Dracula Film Festival

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At the Dracula Film Festival it has become a tradition to award at least one honorary title of Count Dracula every year, and among the recipients of the trophy, thus celebrated for their memorable achievements in the space of fantasy film, are the directors Lamberto Bava and Ruggero Deodato, the actress Debbie Rochon, producer and cinematographer Vlad Păunescu, master of special effects Sergio Stivaletti and actor Armand Assante.

The “Count Dracula” trophies will be handed out this year to two of the most popular actors in contemporary Italian cinema, both reaching the age of 85, Enzo G. Castellari and Sergio Martino, guests of honor at the Brașov festival, arrived in the 11th edition.

Enzo G. Castellari (b. 1938) retained his notoriety among younger generations of moviegoers thanks to his 1978 war film The Inglorious Bastards, which inspired Quentin Tarantino for his Inglorious Basterds, in which, incidentally, the Italian filmmaker has a cameo.

Castellari, who since 1971 signed a first notable Thriller, Cold Eyes of Fear, with Fernando Rey, followed by a series of Poliziotteschi films, featuring his fetish actors, Franco Nero and Fabio Testi, is not associated as a director with the genre Horror, because his experience with Sensitività (1979) was traumatic due to production problems, but his inspiration was filled, including as a script, in the Adventure-Fantasy/SF area, on the manifestation of the 80s, with his film cycle Bronx Warriors/ Noi barbarians.

The screening of the movie Warriors of the Wasteland a.k.a. is scheduled as part of the Dracula Film Festival. The New Barbarians is celebrating its 40th anniversary from the first person, with a Q&A session marking the anniversary.

The second special guest honored with the title of “Count Dracula” is the renowned Italian filmmaker Sergio Martino (b. 1938), an expert in the Giallo and Horror genres, who continues to influence and inspire new generations of producers and filmmakers drawn to the imaginative side, fun and entertaining stories for the big screen. Sergio Martino’s tribute at the DFF is supported by a screening of his 1973 film, which he signed as director and screenwriter, Torso, marking 50 years since its first premiere, followed by a Q&A session with the Italian filmmaker.

Torso is currently considered the first Slasher in the cinema sector and is the last “official” Giallo that Sergio Martino made from a remarkable quintet – transitioning to his horrors of the second part of the 70s -, after The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh (1971), The Case of the Scorpion Tail (1971), Your Vice Is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key (1972) and All the Colors of the Dark (1972). Although often labeled as a Giallo, The Suspicious Death of a Minor, from 1975, is in fact a hybrid that includes non-negligible doses of poliziotteschi and comedy.

The prolific Sergio Martino, who did his apprenticeship six decades ago as second director, screenwriter and executive producer for super-versatile directors such as Mario Bava, Umberto Lenzi or Mario Caiano, have secured their place in the Fantasy pantheon for transcendent achievements. Only one genre, Giallo, if we do not recall his cult films The Mountain of the Cannibal God, now the classic Horror with Ursula Andress and Stacy Keach, from 1978, the 2019 sci-fi, After the Fall of New York or Hands of Steel , or the action/adventure films The Great Alligator and Island of the Fishmen.

For his essential contribution to the evolution of the fantasy film, SERGIO MARTINO receives at DFF XI, together with ENZO G. CASTELLARI, the honorary title of Count Dracula. An unmissable meeting with two legendary filmmakers in Brașov!

Two other notable presences at Dracula Film Festival 2023 are French director AURÉLIA MENGIN and Hungarian director PETER BÉRGENDY.

Aurélia Mengin (France), DFF 2023 Jury President, is a filmmaker, founder and director of Même Pas Peur, The Reunion International Fantastic Film Festival. Since 2011, Aurélia has been a constant presence as a filmmaker of short and medium films in the selection of renowned festivals such as Cannes, Girona, Toronto, Bogota or Houston. His debut feature Fornacis, nominated in 2018 for the Dracula Trophy at the Dracula Festival, subsequently won many major awards in Europe and both Americas for direction, picture, editing, performance and best film.

Aurélia Mengin’s new film, Scarlet Blue, will be screened in Brașov for the Eastern European premiere, at the opening of Dracula Film Festival XI.

Passionate about Horror since childhood (although the genre was banned in socialist Hungary), Peter Bérgendy (b. 1964) graduated in Psychology with a thesis on the psychology of horror films, before becoming, for a decade, editor-in-chief of German Cinema Magazine, the Hungarian edition, during which he was particularly active, including as a television director and editor.

Multiple award-winner over 25 years for his commercials, Peter Bérgendy made his debut in the feature-length fictional Rom-Com Stop Mom Teresa! In 2004, followed by two notable productions for the small screen, the espionage noir The Exam (2011) and the Trezor thriller (2018), the latter being the first Hungarian TV movie ever nominated for the International Emmy Awards.

Post Mortem, a must-see within the Dracula Festival (especially since, after the screening, Peter Bérgendy will enter into a dialogue with the spectators in the Astra cinema hall), is probably the first Horror ever made in Hungary.

The 11th edition of the international fantasy film festival from Braşov, Dracula Film Festival, will take place between October 25-29.

The program of screenings and activities of the Dracula Film Festival are published on www.draculafilm.ro. Dracula Film Festival is a project of the Fanzin Cultural Association and is financed by Brașov City Hall.

Tickets were put on sale at http://www.biletebrasov.ro.

Romania Journal is supporting the festival as media partner.

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