Even though it is not unusual to meet on the coast some of the Hollywood stars that is making a film there still the memory on the famous Trojan battle which took place on Cemovsko polje, in which Steve Rise waved with the sword and threw the spear at the enemy chasing it ruthlessly from Dajbabska gora to the filed where today IA is located is still being remembered.
The town Troy, whose nine-year defense is sang in Homer’s “Iliad”, in the distant 1960 when the movie “Trojan war” was filmed, was located on Red garbage pit called Zmijska glavica. (Snake’s small head).
Improvised fortress with a square and several streets that year were full of movie workers, actors, movie extras, and students who were brought here to play extras and to participate in the spectacle. The director Miomir Matovic remembers well the Trojan War, Steve Rise and the extras who courageously jumped in the saddles.
– As children we often went in front of the hotel “Crna Gora” to see the main actor, a smaller, but extremely handsome man. He went to the movie set in the morning, and he was driven by, at that time rare Titograd taxi drivers. Extras were mostly played by people from Zabljak and Zeta because for the needs of the movie they asked for people who know to ride well – says for “Vijesti” Matovic. Those years, except “Trojan war” whose scene was done by Olja Ivanjicki, many other movies were shot in Montenegro. Some were Montenegrin production and were dealing with domestic topics (“Lazni car”- False emperor, “Zle pare”- Evil money, etc.), some were co-productions (“Zvezda putuje na jug” – The star is traveling to the south, “Bijeli djavo” – The white devil, etc), and some were just shot in Montenegro because of the luxurious exterior.
In the period of the golden age of “Lovcen film” (founded in 1955) when Montenegrin film production has reached in number the greatest level and when it wasn’t unusual too see Billy Kid who is riding in the foothill of Durmitor, or Vinetu who is getting prepared for a panther jump from the highest tree on Biogradska gora, many movie directors, at that time famous in Europe shot for Montenegrin film house. The director and the chairman of the Film library Gojko Kastratovic said for “Vijesti” that at that time the movie “Ne ubij” – Don’t kill was shot, by the screenplay of Pierre Bosta and Jean Oranse.
– The director was Claude Otane Lara, one of the most significant people of French film. In that Montenegrin movie played the stars of the European movie, such as Susan Flon who won the reward on the Venice festival. And in 1861 with the premier of “Ne ubij” in Milan it was being forbidden in Italy because of the political inconvenience. In a public protest against that decision part took actress Ana Maniani, Gina Lobrigida, by sitting on the street in front of the movie hall – says Kastratovic, adding that this movie had great success.
Except Claude Otane Lara, in those years Montenegrin movie was made great by other famous directors and movie workers such as Leonard Berkovic (“Nasilje na trgu” – Violence on the square in 1961), screenplay writers Julijana Najman and Miroslav Milovanovic by whose text in 1963 Milo Djukanovic shot “Muskarci”- Men etc.
Still, in the process of movie making not everything went so smoothly. Kastratovic remembers one incident which happened while the famous “Troy” was shot.
– Director of “Lovcen fil” Aleksije Leko Obradovic found out that no matter the time conditions Italian crew is very slow, and that they don’t have the intention to pay in the last installment. Very nervous, in order to prevent that, he invites the entire crew, leads in it the salon of the hotel Crna Gora and locks the door. He says: “I am a commissar for the movie. No one will leave from here until the last installment is sent” and puts a gun in front of himself on the table. They started crying and screaming. Leko went out, and left them locked up. Someone from the reception declared that, and the Italian embassy from Belgrade wanted to intervene. Everyone came, even Blazo Jovanovic who was extremely inclined to movie. Blazo tells him “Leko leave that people are you crazy?” And Leko tells him “When the installment comes!” And that is how it was – says Kastratovic. In those years movie creators often shot in Budva. Kastratovic mentions that at that time in Budva, which was an extremely attractive location, in the rooms of “Lovcen film” there were two improvised studios.
There always existed the idea that Montenegro, considering the extremely interesting landscape and great climate conditions gives services for shooting of foreign movies. That is why even today it would be very desirable to make a small studio which doesn’t cost a lot and of which incomes the entire national film making could be financed – says Kastratovic. Fantastic landscapes, nature which gives great possibilities and the climate, which the foreigners have notices brought in Montenegro numerous film crews. That is why there is nothing strange in the record that at the same time people from Zeta on Cemovsko polje, led by Steve Rise, have fought for the hand of beautiful Helen, and in Vrlice close to Knin Bosnian – Coratian – Serbian Indians, sitting around the fire fought for their rights – striking. Even though the film studio was not founded in Montenegro, in Vrlice there was a real western town in which foreign movies were shot all the time.
– On one occasion they tell to the director of “Jadran film” that “or people are striking” because of which the penalties were paid. He is a capable man, he reacts quickly; he changes the two directors of the movie, and places new ones. He sends those new ones on the scene. They have been traveling all night, they came there, go in and see – everything is ready for shooting, Italians are there but our people are missing. They ask: “Where are our people?” Someone says: “There they are upstairs having a party meeting”. Directors went slowly over the slope, when at once they came to the group of people dressed in Indian suites. Vinetu and the friends had a meeting for a while longer. The new director told them to pack and go home – said Kastratovic.
T. Pavicevic – F. Jovanovic
FOREIGNERS HAVE BEEN SHOOTING SINCE 1921
Kastratovic mentions that films with Montenegrin themes have been shot such as “Zakon crnih brda” – The law of Black hills (1928), “Fantom Durmitora”, “Muski izlet” and others.
– Imortant factor was also the great number of nice and sunny days in the year which allowed producers a greater number of days for shooting. First shooting of that kind was done by the Czech film enterprise “Bohemian Rival” which started the shooting of the movie “Djavolji mlin” – Devil’s mill. The director was Vladimir Pospisil Born. The material which was shot in 1921 is not preserved. Next year in Boka Kotorska Viena enterprise of the count Alexander Kolovrat “Sasa film” shot two movies – “Potopljeni svijet” – The drowned world, and “Gospodari mora” – The masters of the sea. Both were directed by Alexander Corda – says Kstratovic.
Then come the movies such as “Zamka na jugu” (1933), Djevojke u bjesktvu” (1934), “Smrt Smailage Cengica”, “Divljak” (1935), and then “Dugi brodovi” by Jack Cardiff (1964) and many others.
The new discovery of Montenegro as a movie destination, after 15 years of wars and sanctions has began with the arrival of the Italian director Erman Olmi who uses landscapes on Skadar lake for the movie “Singing behind the screen” (2003). Next year the “Matilda” with Jeremy Irons as the leading star is being shot, and the Russian movie “The heart in the well” directed by Albert Negrin.
Last year in Budva and Sveti Stefan the movie of the Russian director Andrej Koncalovski “Glamour” was shot as well as “Good pappa” with Bob Hoskins. “Red dawn” was shot this year, while last week the work on the movie “Bloom Borthers” started in which the Oscar winners Rachel Weiscz and Adrien Brody act.
RICHARD’S HEAL OR A HILL OF BUDVA
The memory to the golden age of “LOvcen movie” remained. And after the movie, when the entire fuss passes local stories would remain, somewhere even the marking and naming of certain places. So for example there isn’t a passionate coffee fun who sitting on a most famous Budva beach Richard’s head and enjoying the landscape hasn’t wondered – what and whose head is that?
Literary critique and the history connoisseur from Budva Bozena Jelusic said for Vijesti that Richard’s head until 1963 was named The Hill of Budva.
– That year in Budva, after Pozarevac, Zarkovo and Ulcinj a certain meeting of the East and West happened, during the filming of the movie “Long boats” by Jack Cardiff. In the movie which displayed the conflict of Mavars and Vikings about the huge expensive golden bell, acted a spoiled movie star Richard Vidmark, said Jelusic. She said that in 1964 for the needs of the shooting of “Long ships” a wooden pier was built which started from the Hill of Budva, in front of the hotel Avala, and which went some 50 meters into the sea.
Concrete platform and the head on its end, already at that time named by Vidmark Richard’s head, has survived all the blows of the sea. Later that name started being used for the entire area that is on the very Hill of Budva stated Jelusic. And while Mavars and Vikings have left Budva, Richard Vidmark stayed to live as an imposing name of the popular beach.