The Ambassador / Legal Actions from Liberia

It already created problems at the premiere at the idfa (Amsterdam) festival in November last year, and now Danish newspapers reveal a new controversy around the Danish documentary “The Ambassador” by Mads Brügger, who appears in his film as the diplomat, Mr. Cortzen. The website of EDN (European Documentary Network), in general a must-read site for documentary professionals, has made an excellent summary of the current case. Read it all, here is a quote:

… In his documentary The Ambassador, Mads Brügger dresses up as a neo-colonialist and sets off for the Central African Republic to impersonate the Liberian consul, a tittle he has bought himself into. Brügger sets up a match factory run by pygmies as a cover for his ambitions in diamond trafficking. But Brügger is really there to document how the power in the country is allotted and traded… The Liberian Government issued a press release on July 30, 2012 where the Government threatens to take legal actions against Mads Brügger. In the press release it is stated that:

“The Government of Liberia finds this action by Mr. Cortzen to not only be immoral but criminal and offensive to the government and people of Liberia.

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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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