Breda, 2015 - 2022. Why do some people manage to build a secure life, while others fail? Why are people afraid of others? A movie (45 min) and cinematic installation (47 min) in collaboration with Hajrija Salkanovic (†), her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, members of the Hopic family.
An older woman from the Roma community does everything she can to find a place in society. But every time the misunderstanding turns out to be too big. Yet she continues to search for a better life with her children and grandchildren.
Since 2015, I've been working on a film with the Hopic family. The story is based on a series of interviews with Grandma Hopic. Interventions have been made in her story with four film makers. Each time a different layer in the family history is highlighted.
The family tells its migration history in two parts. At the same time, the shared European history becomes visible from an unusual angle. The film mirrors the prejudices about 'Gypsies', crime, war refugees and poverty over the past 80 years, in media and policy.
The first part of the film tells how Grandma Hopic, Hajrija Salkanovic, grew up in Yugoslavia before the Second World War. An interview in Romani, the language of the Roma, and animation show how the war puts an end to an itinerant existence on the brink of poverty. Many family members perish in the Jasenovac extermination camp. Then we travel with a camera through the forests of Croatia. Here grandma, her family and relatives live like partisans. After the war, she and a larger group of Roma look for a decent life. The search takes them to Rome. But here too they find poverty. Grandma tells that she is traveling with her husband and children to France and Belgium.
In 1971 the family arrives in the Netherlands. This arrival has been carefully documented in newspaper articles, TV broadcasts, questions in the House of Representatives and court decisions. The family receives a temporary residence permit through the experimental 'Hopic Regulation'. Under the Den Uyl cabinet (1973-1977), the residence status becomes permanent. In the second part of the film, this history is reenacted with the family in a film studio.
This film and the cinematic installation with research objects is produced in close collaboration with members of the Hopic family. A screening of the film is always followed by a discussion with one or more family members.
(R)OMA: a (family) history was on show at Stedelijk Museum Breda between November 2021 and March 2022 and premiered at Chassé Cinema Breda in November 2021.
Award and nominations: Best Editing win and Best Screenplay nomination, best Director nomination at Social World Film Festival 2022, Vico Equense, Italy.
Hajrija Salkanovic (†), Serif Hopic, Beba Hopic en Nebosa Hopic, Dennis Hamidovic, Michel Hopic, Sofia Hopic, Benjamin Hopic, Gabriela Hrustic, Leonardo Hopic, Ferko Hopic, Valentino Hopic, Sandro Hopic, Zejfa Salkic, Fadila Osmanovic, Cristina Hopic, Marina Hopic, Chanel Hopic, Laura Hamidovic, Claudio Hopic, Juliana Hamidovic-Hopic, Lara Hopic, Lisa Hopic, Victoria Hopic, Jonathan Osmanovic, Johnny Hopic, Sebastiano Hopic, Vanessa Hopic, Ricciardo Hopic and Dino Hopic.
Production: Academie voor Beeldvorming
Concept: Klaas Burger
Direction and research: Klaas Burger and Stefany Karghoti
Interventions: Tess Martin, Lavinia Xausa, Matija Pekic and Katarina Jazbec
Editing: Jesse Immanuel Bom en Stefany Karghoti
Sound design, foley and music: Michiel van de Weerthof
Graphic Design: Yacinth Pos
Camera: Stefany Karghoti, Jesse Immanuel Bom, Fanny Hagmeier, Matija Pekic, Lavinia Xausa, Jacopo Dall'Agnol
Sound recording: Olivier Nijs, Jeroen Stout
Sound post processing: Marco Raaphorst
Translation: Beko Galjus, Paul Öfner
Production: Stefany Karghoti, Monique van de Wijdeven
Advice: Huub van Baar, Amsterdam University; Stefanie Hoeks and Sheila Steijaert, Pandor Jeugdzorg; Paul Öfner; Joep Weel, Rechtsbuiten
Thanks to: Anneke van Elderen, Liesbeth van Woerkom and Dorothé IJsseldijk, Annahuis Breda; Ben Evers, Floris Guntenaar, Gertjan Adema, Fragmented Appearances; Erven Peter Schat; Vindingrijk Kringloopwarenhuis Breda; Jenny van den Broeke, KRO-NCRV, Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision, Witte Rook
Partners: VSBfonds, VriendenLoterij Fonds, Gemeente Breda, Stedelijk Museum Breda, Chassé Cinema, Annahuis Breda, Kansfonds, Provincie Noord-Brabant.
Documentaire over de Roma familie Hopic. NOS Met het oog op morgen, 2021 (Dutch).
Lint, Roos van der, De knokkels van oma Salkanovic. In: De Groene Amsterdammer, nr. 50-51-52, 2021 (Dutch).
Wijnands, E, Filmproject over Roma in Breda: 'Soms zeg ik maar dat ik uit Kroatië kom, dat voorkomt vooroordelen’. BN De Stem, 2021 (Dutch).
Eden, Daphne van, en Briels, Bard, Kijken door de ogen van oma Hopic. Kennisplatform Inclusief Samenleven, 2022 (Dutch).
A. Gioiello & S. Gamba, Interviste e confronti: Klaas Burger, artista. Spazio PPP, 2022 (Italian, English).