12 young filmmakers with experience in the audio-video field will be participating in the 12th edition of Aristoteles Workshop, the annual program designed for directors, cinematographers and film editors interested in creating a documentary film under the guidance of professionals of the international film industry.

This year’s selection has been exceptional. Besides the European countries, applications were sent from all around the world, from New York to Tel Aviv, from India and Nepal, from Iran, Lebanon, North Africa, Mexico and Vietnam. The nationalities of the 12 selected students are proof of the great diversity and interest for Aristoteles Workshop.

The participants selected this year by a committee of professionals come from Croatia, Finland, Iran, Israel, Italy, Lebanon, Great Britain, Romania, Serbia, Hungary and Vietnam. They will form four working teams, with three students each – a director, a cinematographer and an editor – and they will have four weeks available to create a documentary, going through all the stages of the filmmaking process, from finding a subject to shooting and post-production.

The best film will be awarded with a 1500€ prize by the Farmexim firm.

The experts and tutors who will be guiding the students this year are Thierry Garrel (France), Nino Kirtadze (Georgia)  și John Appel (Netherlands).

Thierry Garrel

Thierry Garrel


Here are the participants of 2017 Aristoteles Workshop:

Film Directors

Jasmina Beširević (Croatia) took classes in documentary film in Zagreb following a career in education. In her experience as an educator she found the guidance of professionals, teamwork and practical learning to be the essentials of knowledge assimilation and new skill development.

Stefan Pavlovic (Serbia) studied in Los Angeles, has lived in Mexico and lives for the moment in New York. He is currently following a Master of Film Degree program in Amsterdam. The films he has made so far have been screened in Sydney, Lisbon, Boston and New York.

Romulus Balazs is originally from Constanta, Romania, but he has been living in France since he was 3 years old. He returned to his home country around the age of 20 to discover his origins. Fascinated by Romania’s history, he stumbled upon some amazing stories and made his first documentary here: Souvenirs of Iasi, about the Roma Holocaust in Romania.

Iulia Stoian (Romania) is a graduate of the Film and Television School in Great Britain. Honey and wounds, her first documentary, was shortlisted for Grierson Awards in 2014 and was awarded Best Foreign Short in the Palm Springs American Documentary Film Festival 2015.


Aylin Gökmen (Turkey) is a student of DocNomads Joint Master, an Erasmus Mundus international Masters course held in three universities in Lisbon, Budapest and Brussels. She followed academic programs in different european countries, she traveled a lot and admits this has helped her become a more tolerant and understanding person, contributing also to her professional development.

Michal Shanny (Israel) is a graduate of ZeLIG School for Documentary, Television and New Media of Bolzano, Italy. She worked in a few short films, the most recent one, Happy New Year, being screened at the Asiatica Film Festival in Rome, at the Genoa Film Festival and at the Pesaro Film Festival. In the past years she has developed as a photographer and discovered her work is more valuable the more it captures emotion.  The Aristoteles Workshop experience will be her first visit in Romania, the home country of her grandmother.

Bahar Shoghi (Iran) worked for Iran’s France Presse, the films she worked for were selected by festivals in London and Dresden, and she contributed to a participatory video project which offered a group of refugee children the opportunity to work in their first film. She says her experience in Iran working as a female cinematographer in an industry overwhelmed by men motivated her to stick to her professional goals no matter the circumstance.

Marianna Vas (Hungary) is a graduate of DocNomads International Joint Master and is currently the recipient of a Leonardo Da Vinci grant in Lisbon. She worked in television production in Hungary and made independent films in Italy and Portugal. She is interested in the teamwork experience and believes in the importance of collaboration in the process of creating cinema.


Hedda Bednarszky (Romania) is a graduate of Cinematography, Photography and Media department of Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj. Cat lady, one of her films, was screened at Romanian Short Corner in 2017’s Cannes edition.

Miruna Minculescu (Romania) graduated the Faculty of Political Studies and is now a student of National University of Theatre and Film, film direction department. Eight years ago she discovered her passion for photography and only in the past year she became fond of documentary making while working in school projects.

Rares Hantiu (Romania) studied film at the National University of Theatre and Film and made a few of his own. He recorded the sound for Iezer Station 15033 (2015) directed by Iulia Matei, he was assistant director and location manager for The Projectionist (2015) and Pădurarul (2017), both directed by Norbert Fodor. He is the founder of an NGO which does film promotion, production and distribution and he is writer for the FilmSense platform.

Hong Nguyen Quan (Vietnam) Graduated from the Hanoi Academy of Theatre and Cinema, where he studied film direction and sound design. The short films he made during this period were well received and awarded locally. Currently, he is a student in the DocNomads program and works in the independent sector, in which he wishes to remain.