On January 26th 2005 Mitja Okorn's feature film TU PA TAM (HERE AND THERE) premiered both in Slovenia and in England at Sunderland film festival. Not only did the film establish him as one of the hottest young directors HERE in Slovenia and THERE abroad, it also made one of Mitja's biggest wish come true and was the best present for his 24th Birthday.
Born and living in Kranj, in his younger age Mitja Okorn became state's champion in Economics. But his great love of films, music and camera lead him away from the University of Economics in Ljubljana, even though he was one of the top 20 students among freshmen. By then he had already shot two sport movies NOT SPONSORED and NOT SPONSORED 2, in which he combined his interest in skateboarding and film-making, as well as directed numerous music videos. First was a video for Los Ventilos, for their song 2000, followed by videos for performers like Backstage, Select, Kosta, Kocka, Bohem, Elvis Jackson and C.R.A.S.H. He was an assistant to and learned from some of the best Slovenian directors of TV commercials, music videos and feature films like Van Jemeršič, Peter Bratuša... But even that was not enough for the hyperactive director: he organized a few concerts and happenings (such as the skateboard meeting RAZSTUR) and tried himself in a role of an interviewer for an on-line music newspaper and got the opportunity to meet and interview stars like Paul Thomas Anderson.
His talent did not stay unnoticed and Mitja's short film BE FLEXIBLE won him the best short film award at the Motovun film festival in Croatia. In addition to that, the film was also nominated at the International Short Film Festival in Slovenia (SNIFF).
But it was the feature film TU PA TAM (HERE AND THERE), for which he wrote the screenplay, produced it and directed it, which made Mitja well-known. The feature film was made with almost no budget and was not supported by Slovenian Film Fond but was, in spite of all, the first film without such support that was distributed and shown in all theatres across country. It was also shown on several film festivals like LIFF (International Film Festival in Ljubljana) and Film festival in Sunderland. In autumn film received “Golden Roll”, an award given by movie theatres for most viewed Slovenian feature film in the year 2005.
Great sucess of his feature debut and experiences with making music videos gave him the opportunity to work with some of the biggest names in the music industry in Slovenia and abroad. Music videos for Alya, Sasha, Omar, Dan D and especially Tamoto and Jah Waggie that are shown not only in his home country but also on foreign music televisions, especially MTV, helped him become one of the most wanted talented young directors.
Mitja Okorn is a director with a different approach; he has great sense of humour as well as a considerable cynical inclination that defines his work. His imagination in directing breaks every border, not letting him be limited by already seen scenes, what is more – his ides reach over the edge of possible and in his movies we can always find something fresh, crazy and unique.
He also attended Berlinale Talent Campus.
Like Mitja himself says:
»I am happy because I know what I like and want to do in my life – make movies, tell stories, and write and film my dreams. Directing is the perfect drug for me – I do not need anything else, sometimes not even food.«