The movie “Happy New Year ’49 “

Following the success of his first feature film, “The Red Horse” the director Stole Popov approached the production of “Happy New ‘49” with exceptional creative energy and dedication. Above all, Popov with unmistakable intuition chose the dramatic text by Gordan Mihic.
In its visual foundation the film actually presents the atmosphere existing in a family which having been placed in such historical circumstances begins not to disintegrate but rather reintegrate itself in a ring of evil, imposed by the times and the incomprehensible situations which it begins to manifest. However, the principal subject matter of the film is the reaching of the Resolution of the Inform-bureau and the repercussions it had on our environment. Thus, this family represents an average social cell, typical of that time, the tragic destiny of which is just as characteristic.
The director Stole Popov manages to achieve a harmony in the connecting of all the segments of expression in the film, which inevitably resulted in their esthetically functional co-action. Thus it is evident from the very first glance that the action focuses on the actors and the casting is here done with exceptional care. The three principal characters are played by: Meto Jovanovski, Vladica Milosavljevic and Svetozar Cvetkovic and the rest of the cast includes Aco Djorchev, Milica Stojanova, Sinolichka Trpkovska, Dushko Kostovski, Petar Arsovski, Goce Todorovski, Ivan Bekjarev, Mladen Krstevski and Mite Grozdanov.

An exceptional stylistic contribution was made by the cameraman, Misho Samoilovski, the set decorator Nikola Lazarevski, the costume designer, Jasminka Jeshic, the editor Laki Chemchev and the composer of the music, Ljupcho Konstantinov..

Short Description

Year of production: 1986
Category: Feature film
Color, sound, 35 mm.
Length: 3.500 m.
Duration: 125 min.
Production companies: “Vardar Film”-Skopje; “Makedonija Film”-Skopje; “City Cinemas”-Skopje; “Union film”-Belgrade
Director: Stole Popov
Screenplay: Gordan Mihic
Director of Photography: Misho Samoilovski
Editor: Vangel – Laki Chemchev
Leading Roles:
Meto Jovanovski, Svetozar Cvetkovic, Vladica Milosavljevic, Aleksandar – Aco Djorchev, Sinolichka Trpkova, Kire Simonovski, Petar Arsovski, Mite Grozdanov, Dushko Kostovski, Milica Stojanova, Goce Todorovski
Music: Ljupcho Konstantinov
Art Director: Nikola Lazarevski
Costume Designer: Jasminka Jeshic
Sound: Jordan Janevski
Gaffer: Petar Bogoevski
Production Manager: Panta Mizhimakov


  • 1986 FYFF, Pula, Grand-prix, Golden Arena for best film for Stole Popov
  • 1986 FYFF, Pula, Grand-prix, Golden Arena for best film for “Vardar Film
  • 1986 FYFF, Pula, Golden Arena for best screenplay / Gordan Mihic
  • 1986 FYFF, Pula, Golden Arena for best featuring male role / Dushko Kostovski

  • 1986 FYFF, Pula, Golden Arena for best music / Ljupcho Konstantinov
  • 1986 FYFF, Pula, Golden Arena for best mask / Radmila Ivatovic
  • 1986 FYFF, Pula, Prize “Zlaten Gladiator” (“Golden Gladiator”), from Yugoslav film academy / Stole Popov
  • 1986 FYFF, Pula, Prize “Milton Manaki”from Yugoslav film critic / Stole Popov
  • 1986 San Sebastian film international film festival- Nomination for Golden Shell

  • 1986 FF, Nish, Grand Prix, “Cele Kula” for best leading mail role / Meto Jovanovski

  • 1986 FF, Nish, Big Charter for female role / Vladica Milosavljevic
  • 1986 FF, Nish, Charter for male role / Svetozar Cvetkovic
  • 1986 FF, Nish, Prize for best acter amateur / Kire Simonovski
  • 1986 FF, Vrnjachka Banja, Leading prize “Golden Dukat” for best screenplay / Gordan Mihic
  • 1986 FF, Vrnjachka Banja, Prize “Golden Coin” / the actor Aco Djorchev
  • 1986 FF, “Manaki’s meetings”, Bitola, Golden Plaque “Milton Manaki” for best camera / Misho Samoilovski
  • 1986 FF, Mladenovac, Golden Plaque for best art direction / Nikola Lazarevski
  • 1986 FF, Mladenovac, Silver Plaque for costume design / Jasminka Jeshic
  • 1986 Yearly Prize from the magazine “TV Novosti” / the actor Meto Jovanovski
  • 1986 Film of the year according to magazine “Oslobodjenje” from Saraevo
  • 1986 Yugoslav candidate for the “Oscar” Academy Award
  • 1986 Charter from Macedonian Culture
  • 1987 The Prize “13-th November” / Stole Popov
  • 1991 IFF, Porto Alegre (Brazil), Grand Prix, First Prize from the audience
  • 1993 Vienna, Farewell Yugoslavia – Viennale ’93, Anthology of 33 films Special Diplomas on the Fesivals in Jerusalem and Munich FEST Belgrade, Anthology of Middle European Film – Sasa Petrovic


“I’m deeply moved by HAPPY NEW ‘49. The director masterfully guides excellent artists. This is an absolutely impressive achievement…”
Milosh Forman, Vjesnik, Zagreb
“HAPPY NEW ‘49 is an impressive second feature from Yugoslavian director Stole Popov. Film is a wrenching, poignant portrayal of the disintegration of the Yugoslavian family during the Stalin era that is told with exceptional sensitivity and style… HAPPY NEW ‘49 is a powerful love story that examines final loyalty in the most adverse of times. It is a bleak, disheartening picture that is colored by suicide, violence, betrayal and sadness. There is nothing black and white about Popov’s visualization of this period in Yugoslav history… At just over two hours long, the film – surprisingly – never lags.”
Variety, USA
“I appreciate Stope Popov, who, according to me, is on the top of all directors, not only in Macedonia or on the Balkan, but with certainty in Europe.”
Svetozar Cvetkovic, Dnevnik, Skopje
“HAPPY NEW ‘49 is probably one of the best cinematic achievements of the Macedonian film in its entire history. In the Popov’s film, most astonishing is precisely this dark force, which plunges into the lives of innocent people. That force breaks families, puts fear and loved ones injected distrust, compels to betray your companions and break down with yourself, from your principles, to denounce of everything that makes personality, individuality, the fate…”
Miron Chernjenko, Moscow
“Direction, screenplay, acting performances and cinematography – all combine to made HAPPY NEW ‘49 a milestone in Yugoslav cinema as well as a masterful film achievement in Macedonian cinematography…”
Ronald Holloway, USA
“Solid script, directing masterpiece and proficiently, but not that overemphasized rejection of the taboos that make HAPPY NEW ‘49 achievement to which the French distributers have to pay attention!”
Rafael Besan, Leberacion, Paris
“Stole Popov’s HAPPY NEW ‘49 is a new approach to a major phenomenon which treats the subject frankly, intensively, with lots of fancy and passion…”
Ranko Munitic, Duga, Belgrade

Watch on Youtube

Photos from the film