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Bono at the opening night of the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival

The U2 stars arrived to the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival, accompanied by their wives Ali Hewson and Morleigh Steinberg, along with model andactivist Christy Turlington

At the first night of the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival, the screening of the opening film KISS THE FUTURE by Nenad Čičin-Šain was marked by the arrival of surprise guest and film crew members Bono and The Edge of U2.

The U2 stars arrived to the 29th Sarajevo Film Festival, accompanied by their wives Ali Hewson and Morleigh Steinberg, along with model andactivist Christy Turlington. Bono’s link to Sarajevo and the Sarajevo Film Festival has persisted for a number of years. After visiting the Festival in 2000 and 2021, he frequently came to Sarajevo in support of our manifestation.

Bono’s work is also marked by his activism — U2’s performance at Llondon’s Wembley stadium featured in KISS THE FUTURE was exactly 30 years ago today. This year, the Sarajevo Film Festival commemorates the 30th anniversary of the First Apollo War Cinema, when the city was under siege and audiences gathered to watch films in the basement of the Academy of Dramatic Arts, thus celebrating a jubilee tied to the very inception of the Festival.

The festival was opened by KISS THE FUTURE, a film by Nenad Čičin-Šain, in which U2 played a significant role for wartime and post-war Sarajevo and its citizens.

Bill Carter was an American aid worker living in Sarajevo who, inspired by this local resistance, reached out to one of the world's biggest bands, U2, to see if they could help raise global awareness of the devastating conflict. The band agreed and, across the summer of 1993, their ZOO TV featured live satellite interviews with local Sarajevans. When these interviews came to an end, the band pledged to perform in the city once the conflict was over.

KISS THE FUTURE follows the story of this promise and the post-war concert in which, on September 23rd 1997, U2 performed in front of more than 45.000 fans in the liberated city. This concert still lies in the collective memory of the people of Sarajevo, as proof that they not only survived the siege, but also that in the midst of the horrors produced by the darkest impulses, music and art can be acts of rebellion and resistance.

That same mission has, since its inception, been built into the foundation of the Sarajevo Film Festival.

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