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After the already traditional Grossmann Fantastic Film and Wine Festival, the Prlekia region also offers a fantasy, sci-fi and comics festival, thus making a big step towards getting the status of fantastic Mecca. The first edition of the festival took place In October 2019 in Ormož.
At Ormož Castle, numerous exhibitions, discussions, lectures, film screenings, workshops, and other events took place, enabling the visitors to get acquainted with the world of comics, sci-fi, and fantasy, as well as some of the artists.
On the first day, dedicated to comics, artists Zoran Smiljanić, Izar Lunaček, one of the most prominent representatives of the younger generation of comic artists, and Ivica Stevanović, a renowned Serbian illustrator, caricaturist and comic artist, who also authored the visual image of the festival, introduced themselves at discussions and exhibitions of their works while the audience was also able to enjoy live-reading of the Alan Ford comic book – to mark the 50th anniversary of this cult comic – by the Radio Student crew, and test their knowledge at the Fantastic Quiz.
Over the next two days, many lectures and discussions on various sci-fi and fantasy-related topics were given by sci-fi writer Milena Benini, professor, writer, and editor Tomislav Brlek, writer and translator Marko Fančović, writer Aleksandar Žiljak, Croatia's leading sci-fi publisher Davorin Horak, journalists Željko Luketić and Simon Habjan, and many others.
Movie lovers could enjoy the film adaptation of Dune, made by David Lynch in 1984, the documentary Dune by Alejandro Jodorowski, the Soviet sci-fi classic Planet of the Storms and a few other films, such as Croatian sci-fi hit My Grandpa is an Alien. There was a live podcast by O.B.O.D. as well as a very successful panel on Dune, we could listen to a Demolition Group concert, watch a film-costume exhibition by Tajana Štasni and attend the Fantastic Fair with comics, books, board games, and records.
The festival also bestows prizes, called Vicious Cat, which originates from the Grossmann Fantastic Film and Wine Festival. The award has an international character and is given to outstanding artists of global importance. Award winners of the 1st Grossmann Fantasy, Sci-Fi and Comics Festival were Zoran Smiljanić, one of the most recognized Slovenian comic book artist, who received the Honorary Vicious Cat for outstanding contribution to comic book art, Milena Benini, Croatian author, translator, theoretician, and editor, who received the Honorary Vicious Cat for outstanding contribution to science fiction and fantasy, and Andrej Ivanuša, author, publisher, editor, and philatelist, who received the Honorary Vicious Cat for lifetime achievement in the field of science fiction and fantasy.