Magnificent7 Starts Tonight

It is below zero but sunny here in snow-white Belgrade where the 7th edition of the Magnificent 7 European feature length documentary festival kicks off tonight with two opening films on the programme: ”Nenette” (Photo) by French veteran master Nicholas Philibert and ”Blood in the Mobile” by Danish Frank Piasecki Poulsen. The organisers, Svetlana and Zoran Popovic, filmmakers themselves and teachers at their own film school Kvadrat, are welcoming the guests and the audience in the usual atmosphere of warm hospitality and generosity that is also conveyed by their young staff of filmmakers. As part of the selection team I was interviewed yesterday and asked why the audience seems to be growing from year to year. Yes, why, well first of all because of the reputation of the festival to bring quality to the audience – and because of the (overall?) interest in the creative documentary that is also evident here. It is cool to watch documentaries and to talk about them.

And it even more cool to meet people who have attended all editions of the festival and who remember a film shown 5-6-7 years ago.

Must be a sign of quality of the film in question. For that reason and to celebrate the 7th edition the organisers made a competition where Magnificent7 afficionados could vote for which film they would like to have screened again. The three winners – to be screened this coming sunday – were ”Pianomania” by Lilian Frank and Robert Gibis, Anna Bucchetti’s ”Dreaming by Numbers” and ”Black Sun” by Gary Tarn.

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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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