DOK Leipzig Opens Monday Night

As a festival guest and reporter for this blog you receive loads of mails about what is to happen. Of course. The Leipzig festival sustains a good tradition for press releases that  – unlike others – refrain from saying ”we are the best in the world” but limits itself to convey information letting the enthusiasm come out in the film descriptions that are authored by members of the selection committee. Good idea but also ”dangerous” as you might run into texts that include an interpretation of what you are to watch. But that is another story. Here follows an edited version of the press release  that introduces the festival:

The 55th International Leipzig Festival for Documentary and Animated Film will opens Monday in the Leipzig CineStar theater complex… A keynote speech will be delivered by festival director Claas Danielsen. DOK Leipzig will open with the animated film DEMONI by Theodore Ushev and the documentary film ARE YOU LISTENING! (photo) by Kamar Ahmad Simon, the first film from Bangladesh to be shown in the International Competition at DOK Leipzig. Grit Lemke, head of the documentary programme at DOK Leipzig, will preside over the evening.

By Sunday, 360 films from 62 countries will have been screened at DOK Leipzig. The official programme includes 84 documentaries and 114 short animated films. About 200 filmmakers will be present in Leipzig, as will numerous protagonists from the various films. Alongside the 264 film screenings, DOK Leipzig will be offering a variety of master classes, workshops, case studies, roundtables and panel discussions on issues facing the industry today. The 1,400 accredited industry guests this year are evidence that DOK Leipzig has become one of the main gatherings of the documentary industry.

This year, the 5,000 euro Doc Alliance Award will be presented in Leipzig during the opening festivities. The most important prizes at DOK Leipzig are the Golden and Silver Doves and the Talent Dove of the Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig, which will be awarded on the festival Saturday in Leipzig’s Central Theater. A record 79,000 euros of prize money will be awarded at this year’s festival.

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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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