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Friday, 5 April, 2002, 19:46 GMT 20:46 UK
Bosnia celebrates director's return
No Man's Land is Bosnia's first Oscar triumph
No Man's Land is Bosnia's first Oscar triumph
Thousands of Bosnians have lined the streets of Sarajevo to welcome the arrival of Danis Tanovic, whose anti-war film No Man's Land won this year's Oscar for best foreign language film.

The film beat off strong competition from pre-ceremony favourite Amelie to win the country's first ever Academy Award.

Tanovic wrote and directed the film about two soldiers, one a Bosnian Muslim, the other a Serb, who end up stuck in an abandoned trench during the country's 1992-95 war.

I like to think that my generation is the generation which is going to bring hope back to this country

Danis Tanovic
The movie was a big success in Bosnia and an art house hit around the world.

Tanovic briefly spoke to the cheering crowd, saying: "This is for Bosnia. This is for you.

"There is happiness because of this success and because the war has finished, and also a sadness because all these things had happened."


The director's arrival in Sarajevo came on the eve of the 10th anniversary of the beginning of the siege of the city, one of the darkest chapters of the Bosnian war.

More than 10,000 Sarajevans lost their lives during the war as Bosnian Serb forces besieged the city, under constant artillery and sniper fire.

Tanovic, 33, said: "I like to think that my generation is the generation which is going to bring hope back to this country."

No Man's Land has been an arthouse hit
No Man's Land has been an arthouse hit
He now lives in France, and made the film with French and Italian money.

The director was born in 1969 in Zenica in Bosnia-Herzegovina and studied at the Theatre Academy in Sarajevo from 1989 to 1993.

During the first two years of the Bosnian war, Tanovic was responsible for the army archive of Bosnia-Herzegovina and made 300 hours of documentary material.

He has previously received awards for his films and documentaries in Dublin, Ireland, Fribourg, Germany and in Auxerre and Paris in France.

No Man's Land beat off competition from Amelie, Elling from Norway, Lagaan, representing India, and Argentina's Son of the Bride for the Academy Award.

See also:

25 Mar 02 | Oscars 2002
Bosnia scores Oscar glory
17 Aug 01 | Film
Sarajevo film festival opens
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