Edinburgh Documentary Pitch/4

”Make Docs Happen” is the slogan of the Edinburgh Pitch. If that will be the case for the 2011 pitched projects, that they will be made, will happen, remains to be seen. For sure it is that the positive comment in the auditorium will be followed by meetings one-to-one, broadcaster and filmmaker, and then will follow eventual negociations, rough cut screenings, contracts, delivery etc. etc. It takes time and you have to be committed and have something to say, to be in that business. If you can call it a business!

Many good films will come up, many of the presented film projects were actually close to post-production and wanted funding to be spent on the editing and final finish. So money from the Edinburgh Pitch or not, they will be made.

The winner of the audience prize as the best project, and maybe also the best presentation came from Finland, ”The Punk Syndrom”, producer Sami Jahnukainen, director Jukka Kärkkäinen and J-P. Rossi, the team behind the masterpiece ”Living Room of a Nation” (photo). For one year and 4 months they have followed the 5 man band ”Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät” whose members are mentally disabled but play very strong music. There is only high expectations to be connected to this original upcoming film.

Many other presentations were positively received by the panel, more by the non-UK channels than by the representatives from BBC and C4. Uruguyan ”Avant” with former world ballet dancer Julio Roca as the main character, by Juan Alvarez Nema, has a strong supporter in Simon Kilmurry from POV in the US. Brazilian Guy Castor’s ”Matilda, Adolfo and Alicia” tested the courage of the broadcaster with his long silent, ”nothing is happening” shots of the three old people. ”Despite the Gods” by Penelope Vozniak with the charismatic Jennifer Lynch (daughter of David) in the main role as a director caught between Hollywood and Bollywood was entertaining and promising to watch. Irish Chris Kelly presented great material from Cambodia, about people in big trouble because of the new hard economical policy in the country. Titled ”The Cause of Progress” it is  a film that is more than promising, as is Eva Weber’s film from Guinea, ”Black Out”, a moving intro to a world where electricity is something you might not have all the time, wherefore the airport of Conakry it the place where students and others go to write and read.

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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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