Edit
Emir Kusturica Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trivia (15) | Personal Quotes (9)

Overview (3)

Date of Birth 24 November 1954Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Yugoslavia
Nickname Kusta
Height 6' 3" (1.91 m)

Mini Bio (1)

A Serbian film director. Born in 1954 in Sarajevo. Graduated in film directing at the prestigious Academy of Performing Arts (FAMU) in Prague in 1978. During his studies, he was awarded several times for his short movies including Guernica (1978), which took first prize at the Student's Film Festival in Karlovy Vary. After graduation, he directed several TV movies in his hometown, Sarajevo. In collaboration with the screenwriter Abdulah Sidran in 1981, he made the successful feature debut Do You Remember Dolly Bell? (1981) which won the Silver Lion for best first feature at the Venice Film Festival. Their subsequent work, human political drama When Father Was Away on Business (1985) unanimously won top prize at the 1985 Cannes Film Festival as well as FIPRESCI prize and was nominated for the Best Foreign Language film Oscar. In 1989 he won the Best Director award at Cannes for Time of the Gypsies (1988), a film about the life of a gypsy family in Yugoslavia scripted by Gordan Mihic. His first English language movie, Arizona Dream (1992) starring Johnny Depp, Jerry Lewis and Faye Dunaway and scripted by his USA student, David Atkins was awarded the Silver Bear at the 1993 Berlin Film Festival. Underground (1995), a bitter surrealistic comedy about the Balkans, scripted by Dusan Kovacevic, won him a second Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival in 1995.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Aleksandar Novakovic (aleksandar@list.ru)

Spouse (1)

Maja Kusturica (? - present) (2 children)

Trivia (15)

In 1993, he challenged Vojislav Seselj, leader of Serbia's ultranationalist movement, to a duel. He suggested that it should be in the heart of Belgrade, at high noon (!), with any weapon Mr. Seselj chooses. Vojislav Seselj refused this offer saying that he "didn't want to be accused of a murder of an artist".
During the 1995 Belgrade International Film Festival Kusturica knocked down Nebojsa Pajkic, the leader of the New Serbian Right movement. Symbolically enough, Mrs. Pajkic tried to protect her husband by hitting Kusturica with a small bag, a present from Radovan Karadzic, the leader of Bosnian Serbs.
Since 1986 he has played bass guitar in "Zabranjeno Pusenje" (meaning Smoking Forbidden, or no smoking) a rock band from his hometown Sarajevo. In 1992 the lead singer of the band, Nele Karajlic, moved to Belgrade. In 1997 Kusturica and Karajlic started a new "faction" of the band called "The No Smoking Orchestra". The rest of the original band members stayed in Sarajevo and continued their own faction of the band. Super 8 Stories (2001) is a documentary about "No Smoking".
One of seven directors with two films to have won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, the others being Francis Ford Coppola (The Conversation (1974) and Apocalypse Now (1979) ), Alf Sjöberg (Iris and the Lieutenant (1946) and Miss Julie (1951)), Shôhei Imamura (The Ballad of Narayama (1983) and The Eel (1997) ), Bille August (Pelle the Conqueror (1987) and The Best Intentions (1992) ), Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne (Rosetta (1999) and L'enfant (2005) ) and Michael Haneke (The White Ribbon (2009) and Amour (2012)).
Is an only child.
Grew up in Sarajevo.
President of the jury at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival.
Has not been to Sarajevo, his birthplace, since 1992.
Has two children, Stribor and Dunja.
Member of jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 1993.
In May of 2005, Kusturica was baptized in a Serbian Orthodox church, taking up the Serbian Christian name Nemanja. It was a very personal gesture to re-affirm his Serbian roots.
Often stays in Douains, Eure, France.
Often works with actors Slavko Stimac and Predrag Manojlovic.
Father of Stribor Kusturica.
Filming in Serbia with the director Marie-Eve Signeyrole for the short film "Alice au pays s'émerveille" starring Caroline Frossard, Sophie Le Tellier and Christian Mullot until the end of the month. [March 2009]

Personal Quotes (9)

Every time I'm shooting a movie I want to kill myself. Because I don't see the light in the end of the tunnel.
I am finished with cities. I spent four years in New York, 10 in Paris, and I was in Belgrade for a while. To me now they are just airports. Cities are humiliating places to live, particularly in this part of the world.
In Serbia a lot of people hate me because they want to westernise, not understanding that the western world is bipolar, with very good things and very bad things. Since they don't have experience of the west, they even believe that western shit is pie.
OK, maybe we were Muslim for 250 years, but we were orthodox before that and deep down we were always Serbs, religion cannot change that. We only became Muslims to survive the Turks.
Everything must be sold! Everything must be for sale! Everyone must buy! Everyone must have a Jeep!
What you have now is a Hollywood that is pure poison. Hollywood was a central place in the history of art in the 20th century: it was human idealism preserved. And then, like any great place, it collapsed, and it collapsed into the most awful machinery in the world. Why don't I see a Frank Capra today? Because people aren't like this anymore? People haven't changed that much in 60 years.
I'm fed up with democracy. In a democracy, people vote for the mayors. I wanted to build a city where I will choose the citizens.
My purpose is to make a movie to make you warm. To give you some heat. Now, this rational world has become a place where only what is cool is good. Do you cut the movie on the basis of the beat of modernity or the basis of the beat of your own heart?
Milosevic's fundamental mistake was that he thought there were 250 million Serbs, and that he didn't have a couple of nuclear bombs in his pocket.

See also

Other Works | Publicity Listings | Official Sites | Contact Info

Contribute to This Page