Montenegrin scriptwriter and director, Sead Šabotić, has finished filming his feature-length documentary Once Upon a Family. Produced by Code Blue Productions, the project received €30,000 from the Montenegro Film Centre in 2019, and the same year was presented at the Beldocs Academy (Serbia). Development continued in Prague at Ex Oriente Film 2020.
Once Upon a Family is about a man called Gorcin who grew up in the 1980’s in an orphanage. Suffering from mental disorders he was put into a residential institution for adults with psychiatric problems, Komanski Most. Today he is 50. He has a few friends and takes care of a dovecote. However he cannot remember anything about his past, except the memory of the night before his separation from his parents.
Sead Šabotić is interested not only in Gorcin’s daily life but also the political situation. In particular he focuses on a government programme for people with mild disorders to live in the community. In addition to showing the present, the film also questions the past. Using archive film, Šabotić tries to imagine Gorcin’s life if he had not been abandoned, using this parallel to question social reality.
After a degree in directing, Sead Šabotić turned to documentaries. Since then he has directed several short films as well as a first feature-length documentary Twins Woven from Dreams (2020).