About the Festival
“Another festival?! My dear Zuber, why do you want to have another one in addition to all these other festivals in Croatia?” – a well-meaning person told me upon hearing the news that plans were being made to start RAFF – the Rab Film Festival – on the island. There is that part of me that immediately wanted to fight back, but I checked myself. I thought about it and then asked myself: Yes, why? Why another film festival along with all those others? And the answer came in the form of Rab itself. I was once again reminded of it at the time of the magical Rab Fair, when I saw what I am looking at today, at this moment when you are just about to take your seats at the open-air cinema in order to watch one of the 2019 Cannes Festival winners – Les Misérables by Ladj Ly. I saw all these cinema and music banners decorating the city, the posters advertising the times of screenings, the people of Rab buying their cinema tickets, in the city that has been going to the cinema to watch films uninterruptedly for 106 years. A city without its own film festival. The audience, obviously, is already here, it just has to be approached with respect and offered what they deserve – a high-quality film programme.
Enriched with the sounds of music, the odours of gastronomic delights, envisaged as a place of cinema encounters. Defined only by our drive to investigate. On the Island of Happiness, where we can be completely happy only when we have investigated all the aspects of the life we are living or the one that is around us. That’s why RAFF! Co-existing with all other festivals, believing that you will increasingly enjoy it day in, day out; from one year to another. On behalf of the team that have put their hearts and souls into preparing it, our co-organisers, the City of Rab with the mayor Nikola Grgurić and the Pučko otvoreno učilište Rab with its director Katarina Ribarić, all our sponsors, partners and patrons, this is the most we can wish you. And to let yourself enjoy the films waiting for you on the screen under the stars.
Robert Tomić Zuber, Rab Film Festival Director
//////// Mayor of Rab about RAFF
The moment Robert Zuber, on behalf of Toro Laboratorij, contacted the City of Rab and the Pučko otovoreno učilište Rab in order to start the Rab Film Festival, we thought the project was extremely attractive, so we immediately expressed our interest in trying to bring it to fruition.
In the year when the City of Rab celebrates the 130th anniversary of the establishment of tourism as an organised activity and marks its 106-year-long tradition of film screening; when we, in addition to a winter one, have an open-air summer cinema as well – to commit to offer our residents and tourists a brand-new programme was the next logical step.
Developing the programme and creating a new product together with Toro Laboratorij and the Pučko otvoreno učilište Rab has brought us enormous pleasure and I am convinced that, in spite of its organisation being extremely demanding, we will jointly produce a successful festival, worthy of its partner, patrons and sponsors.
The Rab Film Festival was originally envisaged as a big festival that would link film, its most important segment, with music, gastronomy and youth programmes, and I believe that, over the years, it will come to stand out among the many high-quality events in Croatia as a well-attended and a very special event.
Rab is an island of extraordinarily rich history, culture and tradition, and, as hosts and co-organisers, we will do our best to help establish a tradition of such important events and innovative projects that contribute to a better quality of life of our residents as well as to what Rab has to offer to tourists, in order to make Rab a destination famous for its culture and entertainment, a destination that supports first-rate cultural programmes.
As the residents of Rab, we are aware that we have to nurture our tradition as well as create events that, just like the well-known Rab Fair (Rabska fjera), offer unique experiences and encourage tourists to keep coming back to our island.
Nikola Grgurić, Mayor of Rab