Since 2005 then Atom Egoyan’s name is strongly connected to the Golden Apricot festival as for more than 10 years he was appointed a permanent President of the festival. Among the main winners of the festival there were Ararat by Atom Egoyan, 2004, The Sun by Aleksandr Sokurov, 2005, Three Times by Hou Hsiao-hsien, 2006, Import/Export by Ulrich Seidl, 2007, The Mermaid by Anna Melikian, 2008, The Other Bank by Georgy Ovashvili, 2009, Kosmos by Reha Erdem, 2010, Nader and Simin, a Separation byAsghar Farhadi (Iran), 2011, In The Fog by Sergey Loznitsa (Germany/Byelorussia), 2012, Circles by Srdan Golubović, (Serbia/Germany/France/Croatia/Slovenia), 2013, The Tribe by Myroslav Slaboshpytskiy (Ukraine), 2014, Embrace of the Serpent by Ciro Guerra (Colombia/Venezuela/Argentina), 2015, Ungiven by Branko Schmidt (Croatia), 2016, Sanal Kumar Sasidharanwith “Sexy Durga” in 2017 and Roman Bondarchuk with “Volcano” in 2018 .
In 2009 Golden Apricot Yerevan IFF received the Hollywood Foreign Press Award which was the worthy estimation of the Armenian festival by this prestigious organization of cinema journalists and film critics. It acknowledges the international prestige and high rating of the GAIFF (http://www.gaiff.am/en/kCXwFUV83eo8rl1PQ8EDHRH6M7). The 13th GAIFF had about 1000 submissions from 91 countries. During the seven days of the festival the viewers had an opportunity to watch over 138 films. In addition to a wide range of international titles, the festival played host to an ever-expanding film market, offering a gateway to an entire region’s cinematic output.
Based on the vital need for a wide professional and cultural network Golden Apricot IFF has launched the Directors Across Borders (DAB) programme in 2007. On 30 January 2007, DAB Programme was officially recognized as the basic regional co-operation platform between Golden Apricot IFF, Rotterdam IFF and Pusan IFF. DAB is a regional network of film directors and film professionals that share a common belief that cinema is a unique medium of expression that transcends political, ideological, racial or religious borders and connects people. The aim of DAB is to determine the common problems typical for the states in transition, to facilitate film co-production projects addressing the issues of multinationals and multiculturalism, values tradition, social cohesion, diversity, and cultural heritage. DAB is dedicated to transnational and multilateral cooperation, exchange, professional training and knowledge sharing between Armenia and the region and wider. The main event of DAB program is the annual DAB Regional Co-production Forum consisting of workshops, presentations, pitching sessions, seminars, and film program. It is a unique film industry event in the region, providing an environment for regional and international film industry professionals to meet. In total 250 filmmakers and cinema journalists from the region underwent trainings and workshops organized by the DAB Project.
‘Armenia - The Apricot Revolution’ - this was the title of David D’Arcy’s article on Armenian cinema, published in Screen International on 25 July, 2008. It highlights the importance of Golden Apricot International Film Festival, which was founded in 2004 in Yerevan. The festival has been seen as a revolution in overcoming the deep crisis of national film-production in Armenia and in integration of Armenian cinema within the global film community. D’Arcy continued: ‘At the Golden Apricot…international cinema is meeting the culture of this small nation whose Diaspora reaches from the former Soviet Union to Paris, Santa Monica and Toronto…’ Armenia does not have much film production today, but Armenia has acquired a new symbol – an international film festival, Golden Apricot. By this new symbol Armenia has got known also in the world of modern cinema.