One World 2017: The Art of Collaboration

Of course documentary festivals react to what happens in the world right now. The Prague-based human rights documentary film festival One World does, as says a press release that came in this morning. An edited version comes here:

Theresa May’s announcement of a “hard Brexit”, Trump’s victory in the presidential election and the strengthening of the radical right, the reluctance of European countries to work together in dealing with migration. It seems as if our society is losing a much-needed ability to collaborate.

That’s why the 19th One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival wants to remind us of the value of collaborative effort and sharing. At a time of populist rhetoric, negative discussions on social networks and a flood of “fake news”, collaboration is a positive way to respond to a divided society facing a crisis of values.

“Collaboration is mainly communication and sharing,” said Hana

Kulhánková, who is the director of the One World Festival. “We have become accustomed to the word share meaning quickly forwarding a post on Facebook that we did not even read properly. Let’s go back to the original meaning of the word share. It means to give, to be willing to deny oneself something and consider the consequences of one’s choices on others.”

“Collaboration is not a given,” she continued. “It’s an ability that is gradually learned. Lately, however, collaboration has become an art that only a few have mastered.”

The slogan of this year’s festival campaign is The Art of Collaboration. It is a concept from the field of contemporary art, which has inspired One World and places it into a society-wide context. “We chose a very positive sounding slogan, because Czech society has for a long time been receiving rather negatively worded messages,” Kulhánková said…

Examples of collaboration or its absence can be seen across the whole festival programme, which this year includes over 110 films. This year’s new categories are Vote for Change! focusing on populist movements and civil society activists who have brought the need for change into the political arena. Migration remains a major theme for videographers and filmmakers in the past year, and therefore another new programme category is Dreams of Europe – films about refugees on their way to Europe as well as those who, after encountering the European reality, awake from a naive dream. In collaboration with the reSITE architectural and urban platform, the Faces of the City category was created following the relationship between people and the urban environment. The Family Happiness category meanwhile presents the western family and its importance in an individualised society. Traditional programming categories will again include Who Is Normal Here?, So-called Civilisation, The Power of the Media, Panorama, and One World for Students and Docs for Kids. In a special screening, videos by Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty on the borders of reportage and short documentary will be presented.

One World this year also introduces a new Czech Competition category, which aims to promote the screening of Czech documentaries at international festivals, from among whom a jury will be selected in this competition category.

One World 2017 will be held from March 6 to 15 in Prague and then will visit 32 other cities in the Czech Republic and Brussels. The town of Semily has newly joined the festival family.

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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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