I have just returned from Thessaloniki Documentary Film Festival after a (far too) quick visit for the following reason – thank you so much! – this is the press release of the festival:
The European Documentary Network (EDN) award, which is given to individuals and organizations from Europe that have made a great contribution to the field of documentary, went this year to Tue Steen Mϋller, a prominent figure in the documentary world with a great body of work to his credit. The awards ceremony was held on Friday, March 21st at the Electra Palace hotel, as part of the 16th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival, in the presence of TDF Director, Dimitri Eipides.
The award was presented on behalf of the European Documentary Network by Ove Rishøj Jensen, Web Editor and Film Consultant of the EDN, who addressed the audience and Mr. Eipides by noting: “It is a pleasure to work and jointly host the Docs in Thessaloniki Pitching Forum 2014 for the 16th year in Thessaloniki, as part of the Documentary Festival. It is also a great pleasure to be here and to work with you, Dimitri. “Before awarding the EDN prize to Tue Steen Mϋller, Mr. Jensen noted: “It has become a tradition at this festival to honor with our award any person or organization that has made an excellent contribution to the documentary genre. This year we grant this award for the tenth year and I felt that it should be something more special. In the past, for the most part we have honored people, groups or organizations for a specific initiative or event. This year we would like to honor a man who works beyond particular initiatives, organizations and events. We give the EDN award to this man for his great devotion to documentaries. We grant him this prize simply because he is who he is. Looking at previous years’ winners,
we find that many initiatives have been recognized. For our tenth award, therefore, we must recognize a ”beacon” that shines a little brighter than others on the coast of the documentary. We are honoring a man who has contributed to a long list of films, who always has an opinion he does not hesitate to express in public debates, panels, and his blog. His dedication to encouraging and helping young artists and professionals is remarkable. His contribution has shaped the landscape of documentaries in Europe and beyond. Although we feel as if the prize is somehow returning ”home”, it would be very strange for us in the EDN to not recognize his outstanding contributions to the documentary genre and his lifelong dedication to it. For me it’s a personal and professional pleasure to present the award to Tue Steen Mϋller.”
Amid warm applause Tue Steen Mϋller accepted the award saying: “Thank you very much. I feel a little strange because ten years ago I was in the position of the person that awarded the prize. Dimitri Eipides, it is so nice to be back here. I remember when sixteen years ago along with my colleague Anita Reher, I visited Thessaloniki for the first time and came in contact with the Festival. We had the foresight to ask for funding from Media to organize workshops in Southern Europe and I think this is one of the best things we have done in the EDN. We organized workshops in Thessaloniki, Italy, Barcelona, Lisbon and the story continues, they still exist… I am very happy to be here. Coming to Thessaloniki and flicking through the catalogue of the 16th Festival, I was impressed with the number of films and the tributes to our beloved Peter Wintonick and also our well loved film maker Nicolas Philibert. It seems that with Dimitri we have the same taste. I am also glad to hear that the attendance of the public is great and that so many films are getting made in Greece in times of crisis. As a Greek filmmaker told me, the crisis stimulates creativity. “In closing, Tue Steen Mϋller made a comment: “In 2005 in Thessaloniki I interviewed Pirjo Honkasalo, and recently, thanks to the Festival’s excellent website I reread the whole thing. She was referring to her film Three Rooms Of Melancholia, to Russia and nationalism. Reading this text now and thinking of today and having good friends in Kiev, I am very pleased that their festival DocuDays has tonight its opening night. They are beginning in an unconventional way, with raw material from what was happening in the square of Kiev. Please let us send our greetings to them”.