Director: Stojan Vujicic, Writer: Eva Kamchevska, Producer: Antov Ognen, Production: Dream Factory, coproducer MOUNA GmbH Film & Media Studio, supported by the North Macedonia Film Agency and Film Center Serbia, Country: North Macedonia, Serbia and Germany, Language: Macedonian & German, 90’/4×25’, 2020, Rights: World (except Germany, Serbia, and North Macedonia)
11-year-old Nikola lives with his affluent parents in Germany his father an immigrant from Macedonia and his mother a busy career woman and an absent mother.
Nikola is bullied at school and is suffering because of his dysfunctional family where the parents are always arguing. Nikolа is driven to attempt suicide at the school and then when this scream for help didn’t change anything he runs away across Europe in a lorry owned by his father’s friends destined for Macedonia.
He is looking for his granddad who the father has given up contact with, in a remote mountain village in North Macedonia. Stela his granddad’s shepherd dog is the only one that can get through to him and restore his faith in life. The Macedonian landscape, the dog and the elderly granddad not only heal the boy’s wounds but brings the whole family back together.
About the Director
What’s Stela about? love, being human, reaching inner peace, non–violence as a path towards peace – peace with ourselves and with others. About the truth – one, unique and unalterable category, all of the things we slowly forget which can show us we are worthy as people. STELA is a drama about hope worth having.
I had a need to tell a story about hope, which I experienced in my own life. The story I’ve created within this film has been told many times before, but not always as clear. Through directing STELA I’ve succeeded to show maybe the biggest conflict in our new modern world, the story of non-acceptance and misunderstanding between each other, especially amid family relations. The film is told through the problematic relationship of an 11-year-old boy with the environment which is an obstacle to his maturing. In a situation he can’t find support among people, his hope in life comes from the shepherd dog Stela and one old loner. The love and the energy the child gets from the dog is a whole new world to him. More importantly, he finds a will to live and learns that things can be different, that can be better. Through the child’s journey, a whole new world of intertwined relations and destinies is revealed.
The basic conflict in Stela is between the inner feeling of every character and the assumption of the environment about how s/he feels. Nobody tries to get to the core of the truth which is rarely pretty, but is essential for things to get better. And for the end, they say hope dies last, we say – only if we let it die. Stela won’t let that happen.
Sevilla indie Festival, Best young Actor, 2022
Stela was originally released as a feature film and is now available as a series.