Current Time TV – Also at Sarajevo Film Festival

Skrevet den 17-08-2019 16:39:00 af Tue Steen Müller

Current Time TV – Also at Sarajevo Film Festival

Note the little ”also”… because when it comes to Current Time TV, they have been here, there and everywhere in Central and Eastern Europe, a great new player in the documentary community, in pitching panels, active and enthusiastic. I have met them in Riga, in Tbilisi, in Kiev, in Prague and now they are also here in Sarajevo being part of the Docu Talent presentation that takes place tomorrow at Sarajevo’s Hotel Europe, quote from the organisers, the Jihlava Film Festival:

”The most promising project will receive the Docu Talent Award in cooperation with Current Time TV. The award is accompanied by a financial prize in the amount of 5,000 USD.”

But what is it, Current Time TV that is far from being « a normal public broadcaster”. I asked Natalia Arshavskaya, who together with her boss Kenan Aliyev and colleague Sergei Trofimov run the documentary department of  ”Current Time, known locally as Настоящее Время, (that) is the digital and TV Russian-language news and features network of U.S. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL). It is a leading broadcaster of independent documentary films for Russian speaking audiences…”

OK, American propaganda you might think… not at all when you look at the films Current Time TV has commissioned. I went back to Natalia Arshavskaya to get some facts and personal comments:    

”Thank you for your keeping your interest in (spreading the word about) Current Time, I'm happy to send you the titles that we have commissioned recently - but also in our whole history, since Current Time exists for not so long (2,5 years on air) and we've been commissioning only since late 2017…

Let me start with an audience favourite, Home Games by Ukrainian Alisa Kovalenko - this one literally was the first supported and completed film, so we love them a lot. Alisa is a talented director and her access to the protagonists was incredible and she's just a very brave girl so we're glad we could be of help to this project…

Another Ukrainian is Heat Singers by Nadia Parfan (at Baltic Sea Docs, Riga last year, ed.) - I guess we not only got charmed by the director's energy, but also by the daring subject itself. Communal services is another taboo in post-Soviet space, and the guys did great creating a chanting world of heat workers…

Not to forget How Big Is The Galaxy by Ksenia Elyan - I guess it's mainly our contribution to spreading the knowledge about life of the indigenous people of far north of Russia (on the edge of extinction), but also support of the talented promising director from Russia…”

And not a big surprise that Current Time TV has supported the two masters Sergey Loznitsa and Vitaly Manski. Loznitsa premieres in Venice with another ambitious archive work, State Funeral - a 100% archival film on 7 days of mourning of Stalin upon his death. And Vitaly Manski, who has helped the station a lot in promotion, has had support for ”Putin’s Witnesses” 

I can only praise, what I have experienced from the station. Also on a personal level – I was in a jury with Kenan in Tbilisi, where we also had time to talk football. And Natasha is such a competent doc viewer that she has been invited to be a tutor in the upcoming Baltic Sea Docs.

Last word to her:

”Yet to complete is Hey, Teachers (former Teacher's day) by Yulia Vishnevetskaya – it was pitched in Riga in 2017 and became practically our first film to commission. It's importance for us is in fact that it will be the first ever documentary on school system in Russia - which is a hugely important subject, always silenced by authorities.”

Tilføjet i kategorierne: TV, Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

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