Baltic Sea Forum

It’s over, the 13th session of the Baltic Sea Forum, that started on the island of Bornholm in Denmark and now has its permanent place in Riga. It is very efficiently organised by the National Film Centre of Latvia that paradoxically now is heavily threatened by the political situation of cut downs due to the huge financial crisis in the country. (This has been written about earlier on this site). In this week a decision is expected to be taken whether the independent structure of the film centre will be kept or the organisation will be taken back to being an office in the Ministry of Culture.

At the Forum 24 documentary projects were presented to a panel of 14 commissioning editors, sales agents and film fund executives from France, Germany, Finland, Denmark, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Russia, Austria, Belgium, Holland and the US. For two days the pitching of the projects took place at the top floor of the Albert Hotel in the area of Riga, where Sergey Eisenstein’s father were the architect of many beautiful buildings.

Parallel to the meeting for the professionals a film festival took part open to the general audience in the Cinema K. Suns. I was there for 3 screenings and they were completely sold out. The humourous ”Disco and Atomic War” by Jaak Kilmi and Kiur Aarma, a mix of archive material and reenactments, charmed the audience due to its originality and the story about what it meant to be a child in Soviet Estonia making all kind of efforts to be able to watch Finnish television. Jaak Kilmi (photo, to the left) proves to be a fine talent for docu-comedies with a serious background. And the film will travel all over, no doubt.

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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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