DocLisboa Diary 4

Sunday morning in Lisbon. Sunshine and empty streets. Perfect for a walk before going to sit in front of the video monitor and all the fine films of this festival. Strolled down (literally down) the streets to several great viewpoints and to the capturing of sounds and the observation of a city awakening. The smell of garlic to be used for the bacalau was already in the air as the +60 people, we had it all for ourselves. The cafés, the newspaper stands and the view and sound of the Lisbon trams, going slow through the city as if nothing had changed for the last decades. Could one live here, could one breathe here in the post-Salazar atmosphere of pleasant inactivity surrounded by beauty and melancholy?

Back to documentary festival reality. I ran into Nina Ramos, the producer of the festival, enjoying a cigarette outside the festival venue Culturgest, a rather ugly building but efficient  as location for the festival. We enjoyed the enormous development of a festival during 6 years: From 13.000 spectators at the first edition to 33.000 last year, and for this year, edition number 6, it will be even more. From 60 to 170 films. The typical festival viewer, Nina could not say, but agreed to my observation: students, yes many students. 3.50€ for a ticket, reduction for groups of students. Directors are invited with the full treatment: flight and accomodation. Budget: 900.000€ including a lot of in-kind contribution.

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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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