The Waiting Room

Written and directed by Igor Drljaca 


Toronto International Film Festival 


Igor Drljaca’s critically acclaimed feature film debut Krivina, was an official selection of TIFF 2012. 

TimeLapse Pictures has partnered with Gearshift Films and YN Films for Drljaca’s sophomore feature. 

The personal fall-out of a bloody civil war haunts struggling actor Jasmin (Jasmin Geljo), in Igor Drljaca’s character study The Waiting Room. It World Premiered at the Locarno International Film Festival, and is making its North American debut at the Toronto International Film Festival, Drljaca’s hometown.

A performer who once brought slapstick laughter to TV viewers in his native former Yugoslavia, Jasmin is a rootless soul. Now an underemployed actor in Toronto, he finds the pieces of his former and present life meshing uncomfortably. When he is cast for a role set amidst the very Bosnian-Herzegovinian civil war he escaped decades earlier, the line between fiction and reality become blurred.

Pointedly not a war story, The Waiting Room is about the long legacy of wartime effects, and the often-tragic backstories that immigrants carry.

Drljaca’s second feature after the acclaimed Krivina, The Waiting Room was partly inspired by Geljo’s life story.

“He was a successful actor in pre-war Sarajevo and was part of a wildly-popular televised stage show called Audicija (The Audition),” says director Drljaca. “Jasmin, like many others, left his homeland during the war in the 1990s, aware that his stay would likely be permanent, but always hoping to return. Zeljko Kecojevic, who plays Zoran in the film, was also a member of Audicija, and like Jasmin, moved to Toronto.”

Drljaca says a key consideration was to never show actual war scenes, even in flashback. “Rather, the intention was to tie every scene into the present. When Jasmin is cast as an actor showing an ‘idyllic’ trip from coastal Croatia into the heartland of pre-war Bosnia and Herzegovina, I wanted to blur the lines of fiction and re-creation, the tragic and the absurd.”

Himself a native of Sarajevo, Drljaca has lived in Canada since 1993, where – with his producing partner Albert Shin (In Her Place) – he has gained notice as a blazingly creative cinematic storyteller. The Waiting Room is his second film at TIFF, after his debut feature, Krivina, premiered at the festival in 2012. His in-development third feature Tabija has already received backing from the Cannes Film Festival’s L’Atelier program.

The Waiting Room has been generously funded by Telefilm Canada, Canada Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council, and The Harold Greenberg Fund.

About TimeLapse Pictures
Filmmakers Igor Drljaca and Albert Shin met at York University while studying in the film production program and created TimeLapse Pictures, their production company based in Toronto, Canada. Having completed three feature films and nearly a dozen short films, the company has garnered worldwide attention that has earned them countless awards.

About Gearshift Films
Gearshift Films was founded in 2009 by award-winning filmmakers Jordan Barker and Borga Dorter.  The Toronto-based company produces film and television projects with a universal appeal and high entertainment value across a wide spectrum of genres.  Gearshift Films recently wrapped production on the family adventure film LOST AND FOUND starring Jason Patric (Lost Boys, Speed 2) and Cary Elwes (The Princess Bride).  Other feature credits include TORMENT starring Katharine Isabelle (Ginger Snaps, American Mary) and HOME SWEET HOME by French genre director David Morley

About YN Films
YN FILMS was established in 2006, with offices in Toronto and Istanbul and has produced many award winning short films, documentaries and feature films including WHITE AS SNOW (dir: Selim Gunes), which premiered at the Chicago Film Festival ’10.  YN Films is currently developing several projects with filmmakers from the Middle East and Canada, which include THE FABULOUS ADVENTURES OF INÉS (Carl Bessai), BORHAN (Mahmoud Al Massad), and IN THE NAME OF HONOUR (Noura Kevorkian).