Festival Bijeli Lav 2011

The sea is not merely the "surface" for the ships nor the "bath" for swimmers with the coast for leisure - the sea is also the underwater, which is a completely different ecosystem, the whole new world. A year ago, having this idea in mind, a group of diving and film enthusiasts launched an unique underwater film festival "Bijeli lav" in Rovinj and its neighboring Crveni otok (Red Island), which will be held at the same locations from 14th to 18th September 2011. The festival was initiated by a diving center Puffer situated on Crveni otok, which at the very beginnings made the Festival international by co-operating with divers and underwater filmmakers from Slovenia and Serbia. The result is the International Underwater Film Festival "Bijeli lav", which in 2010 presented the unprecedented underwater camera shots from the European underwater filmmakers. This year, around 20 international underwater films are competing for the "Bijel lav" prize.

Beside films, the festival will offer to the audience an exhibition of underwater photography, which will represent renowned underwater photographers Marjan Radovic, Danijel Frka and Marino Brzac. And for those who want to "grab" the underwater shots by themselves, there are underwater photography workshops, organized in the pool of the Hotel Istra on Crveni otok, as well as a photo safari in the Rovinj archipelago.

"Bijel lav" is also an eco-festival, based on the principles of ecological sustainability, so it will host lectures, panel discussions and workshops with the aim of protecting the sea and encouraging exploration activities in this part of the Adriatic. Intent of the festival is also to popularize underwater film and to encourage the beginnings and promotion of unknown artists, as it offers them the opportunity to share their experiences with established Croatian and foreign authors.

The festival is named after the Venetian lion statue, made of white stone, which protects the coast of Crveni otok against "evil forces".

This year's Festival begins on September 14th, with the Open Days of the Festival, at the Theatre Antonio Gandusio in Rovinj. That's where the interactive / internet workshops for school children will be held, as well as the screenings of selected films from last year and some new, exciting films. The festival will officially start on Friday, September 16th, with a lecture on the protection of sea and underwater life, organized within the 46th European Marine Biology Symposium. In the evening, the screenings will start with competing films by authors from former Yugoslavia (Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia), in Antonio Gandusio Theatre. Later that night, the most attractive films from last year's program will be presented at the plateau in front of the Multimedia Centre in Rovinj.

The central event of the "Bijeli lav" will be held on Saturday, September 17th. Morning underwater photography workshops in the pool of Hotel Istra on Crveni otok will serve as an introduction to the main film screenings, which will start in the afternoon, in front of the MMC in Rovinj. In the later evening hours, the MMC will also host the official opening of underwater photography exhibition, presenting the work of Radović, Brzac and Frka. Official announcements on winning films of the festival will be held later that evening, on the terrace of the restaurant Dvorac on Crveni otok.

The last day of the festival, Sunday September 18th, will start with the morning photo safari for divers, who will participate in the "hunt" for the best underwater shots in the Rovinj archipelago, guided by Marjan Radović. During the day, three most successful amateur underwater photographies made during the safari will be announced.


Image Gallery

pix pix pix pix pix pix

Diving center Puffer

Our diving center is situated in the hotel Istra on Red Island, near the city of Rovinj.

Every day we offer scuba diving trips generaly with one or two dives. Beside the captain there is always one of our dive-guides on board, who will explain in detailed briefings the dive site and the boat. For a comfortable, quick and safe journey to the dive sites we have the dive boat "Puffer". Learn more...

About Red Island


Certainly one of the most beautiful of Rovinj's islands and by all means one of the biggest - with a size of 233.000 m2 and one of the most attractive ones is the Red Island which is located nearby Rovinj, only a 15 minute boat-trip away. It is made up of two little islands, St. Andrew and Maskin, which are connected. Learn more...