The programme is out for the 25th edition of DocsBarcelona. Twenty-five editions!!!

Which means that I have become 25 years older as has the founder of it all Joan Gonzalez, who back then in a workshop in Granada proposed to EDN (European Documentary Network), represented by Anita Reher (now head of Nordisk Panorama after years at Flaherty in the US) and me, to establish what became DocsBarcelona.

I have been there all the time to see with admiration how Gonzalez has expanded what in the beginning was a so-called industry event and later a festival and then much much more.

Here is a quote from this site last year in December:

The L’Acadèmia del Cinema Català included on December 2 six new Membres d’Honor to salute their contribution to the film industry in Catalonia. One of them was Joan Gonzàlez, director of the festival DocsBarcelona and producer of more than 100 documentaries, and with a background at the TVE and TV3. In 1996 he created DocsBarcelona that also exists in Medellin and Valparaiso. DocsBarcelona distributes documentaries to more than 80 places in Spain, and now DocsBarcelona headed by Gonzàlez is working on “nextus” that aims at making documentaries part of the school curriculum.The prestigious award to Joan Gonzàlez is the first one given to a documentarian… continues


…The programme is out for the festival that runs from the 17th of May till the 30th of May. Online and on the big screen of the Aribau cinema and the CCCB.

With a statement declaring solidarity with the people of Ukraine and this selection statement: “Our selection criteria seek to give voice to realities silenced by authoritarian power systems, which often means that people who dare to film in their home countries risk their own lives to make a documentary. For this reason, we will continue to select films based on their content, even when they come from countries with governments that violate fundamental rights. Discrimination based on nationality would involve silencing people who dare to express themselves artistically in countries hostile to human rights.

The sections include Official Section Panorama, Official Section Latitud (Competitive section with the best documentaries from the Iberian Peninsula and Latin America.)

Special sessions, Doc-U(niversities).

And to follow up on the mentioned criteria for this year’s edition, I welcome films by “Myanmar Diaries” by Myanmar Film Collective, “President” (Zimbabwe) by Camilla Nielsson and of course Daniel Roher’s “Navalny” – all films you can find reviewed on this site.

If we go to films with the focus on social issues (and much more) Saeed Taji Farouky’s “A Thousand Fires” is (also) a cinematic masterpiece, as is Magnus Gertten’s “Nelly and Nadine” that according to the website has already been shown in the cinema in Barcelona (26 of April) but can be watched online. A pity (to be egoistic) as I arrive to Barcelona for the festival dates. Both you can search reviews of on this site.

AND dear friends, when are you going to screen Sergei Loznitsa’s monumental “Mr.Landsbergis” – it is announced with (so far) no date and venue? A quote for the jury that gave the film the main award at the IDFA festival 2021: On every level of craft, the winning film represents a monumental achievement that fully explores the role one man, one nation, and one historical moment can play in the still-unfolding story of the global struggle for freedom and self-determination.

In Amsterdam I had the pleasure to meet the protagonist, professor Landsbergis, the first president of the free Lithuania; what a wonderful man and what a gentle yet precise description he gives of Gorbatjov’s brutality towards the Baltic countries at that time.

We need warmth, we need love. It can’t be war and conflicts all of it, so if you are in Barcelona for the festival go to the cinema or online (for citizens of Spain) to watch “Paraiso” by DocsBarcelona veteran Sérgio Tréfaut – people singing in a park in Rio de Janeiro. Each of them with their unique story. Brilliant!

… and there is much more to discover on

PS. Any films missing? Would have been great to see Ukranian films in the programme – like “Outside” by Olha Zhurba, “This Rain will Never Stop” by Alina Gorlova, “The Earth is Blue as an Orange” by Iryna Tsilyk, “House of Splinters” by Simon Lereng Wilmont – or “Looking for Horses” by Stefan Pavlović or “How to Save a Dead Friend” by Marusya Syroechkovskaya. Take it as a gentle criticism from a great supporter of the new artistic director Pol Roig Turró and his program committee. From someone who enjoyed to be part of that group for many many years.

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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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