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The drama God Exists, Her Name Is Petrunya has already had great success, and the audience in Pula will be able to watch it this evening.

Producer and actress Labina Mitevska spoke about how the film came to be at the press conference: “I read in the paper about a case of a woman who jumped into the river to get the wooden cross and managed to grab it before all the men. Every January in Štip, a small town in Macedonia, the local priest throws a wooden cross into the river and only men can dive after it, but that particular year, a woman spontaneously jumped in. It is believed good fortune and prosperity are guaranteed for the year to whoever who retrieves the cross. The men where furious it was a woman who retrieved it, and chaos ensued. I was astonished by the reaction of the public, and I wanted to make a film about it”, Mitevska said. She plays a journalists in the film. “The girl is brought in by the police, and the church is involved in the whole thing”, she said.

The film was selected for the competition of Berlin International Film Festival, which was especially delightful for the crew.

The film is a co-production of North Macedonia, Belgium, Slovenia, Croatia, and France, and as Mitevska said, the co-production was important not only because of the funding, but also because of the creative energy of working together on the film.

Mario Knezović has a role in the film, which he got through casting: “At that time, I did not know what the film was about”, he said and added that working with director Teona Strugar Mitevska was inspirational because she had a clear idea of what she wanted.

“Zorica Nuševa is such a wonderful actress that it was like working with Messi”, Knezović said. “I learned the lines, but my Macedonian is not that good, so I partly acted in Macedonian, and partly in Croatian.”

Expectations are for the film to be the Macedonian contender for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Mitevska said that would be nice, but that the most important thing is for the film to live.

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