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.