In 1957, just a decade after the authorities had decided that Slovenia would establish its own film industry and a mere eight years after the premiere of the first domestic feature film, a Slovene film was included in the official selection of the Cannes Festival, the world’s most prestigious film festival. The film was Dolina miru (international title: Valley of Peace) and its director, France Štiglic, became the first Slovene film director to be nominated for the Palme d’Or. US actor John Kitzmiller won the Best Actor award for his role as the American pilot Sgt Jim –becoming the first black actor to win this award at Cannes. Valley of Peace was selected for screening as part of the Cannes Classics section at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival, sixty years after it was made. If independent Slovenia had just a tiny part of the ambition cultivated by these pioneers of local film and film culture, our films would also feature regularly in the official programmes of the world’s biggest festivals today. But since we are a country without strategy, since we are unable to follow the example of those who are better than us, since we are barely able to ensure the survival of our home-grown film industry, and since we seem unable to understand that culture is an investment and not cost, we must content ourselves with the miracle of Slovene cinema. We may have conserved our film culture, which does not go unnoticed in the world, but we have only done so thanks to the stubbornness, sacrifice and commitment of our filmmakers. We are the proof that it is possible to create a decent national cinema from nothing: a cinema that also deserves to be honoured on postage stamps. Valley of Peace is just one of many jewels of our cinematic heritage.
Issue Date: 17.11.2016 Designer: villa creativa d.o.o. Printer: Agencija za komercijalnu djelatnost d.o.o., Zagreb, Croatia Process: Offset Values: €1.12