Baltic Sea Forum and Screenings 2011

Documentary filmmakers from the Baltic countries, Russia, Poland, Norway and Sweden gather this week in Riga, Latvia. For the 15th time the Forum, that started on the Danish island of Bornholm, organises a meeting between those who have ideas for documentaries and those, who come from tv channels and film funds to look for new documentaries for their audiences. This so-called industry meeting, organised by National Film Centre of Latvia with the support of the EUMEDIA programme, has a very important public addition, a film programme of very high quality, entitled ”Daring Minds”:

A couple of the films have been reviewed on – ”Steam of Life” from Finland and ”Regretters” from Sweden. Others that have been seen by this blogger are the shocking investigative ”Give us Tomorrow” by Michael Colling and Marty Syjuco, a Shakespearean drama about an innocent man trialed and condemned for murder in a totally corrupt Philippene society – and Estonian Marianna Kaat’s human story ”Pit no.8” from an Ukrainian mining environment, where children work illegally. Also to watch is the Irish ”The Pipe”, a classic David-Goliath story (director Risteard O Domhnaill) about Irish farmers and fisherman, who rise up in protest when Shell tries to build a pipeline for natural gas through their county. Russian Alina Rudnitskaya proves again her big talent with “I will forget this Day”, a cinematically beautiful short film about young women waiting to have an abortion performed. Equally talented is local Kaspars Goba, whose “homo@lv” premiered at the Berlinale this year. This is a clip of the presentation text of the film:

“In the summer of 2005 two guys came up with the idea to organize an unprecedented event – a festive lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people’s parade through the streets of Riga, the capital of Latvia. Little did they know that their good intent would spiral into a chain of inconceivable events lasting several years: the great emotion stirred up would dramatically divide Latvian society; the persons involved would be showered, in turn, with human excrement and holy water, families would be torn apart, jobs lost, and a pastor expelled from the church for free thinking.”

Two more films will be shown – and reported on by Cyril Tuschi’s “Khodorkovsky” (photo) and Banksy’s “Exit through the Gift Shop”.

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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