Vaclav Havel Award

The excellent “One World Human Rights Film Festival” in Prague is over and awards have been distributed. One of the awards not only carry the name of Vaclac Havel but when I was there years ago, I was told that the author-president himself, from a shortlist presented to him, personally decided to whom the prize should be given. What an honour for Anders Østergaard, among many other prizes, to get one in the name of Vaclav Havel! Here is the fine motivation of the jury/Vaclav Havel:

As a young boy in 1988, Joshua witnessed the Burma military junta’s brutal intervention against demonstrators, which resulted in the deaths of more than 3,000 people. He decided to fight for democracy from that time onwards. Armed with a small camera and a mobile telephone, he and three dozen other brave Burmese from the Democratic Voice of Burma organisation decided to make a detailed record of anti-government demonstrations in September 2007 and their subsequent brutal suppression. Footage of the dramatic events from the cameras of these reporters appeared in the news bulletins of all important global media outlets and for a time it was the only way in which the world could find out about the actual situation in Burma. This impressively compiled documentary offers an in-depth and extremely authentic record of the events of that time, when Burmese overcame their deeply rooted fear of government repression for the first time in 19 years and came out en masse to support Buddhist monks on the streets of Rangoon. Using the detailed evidence provided by the work of Joshua and his colleagues (who risked their lives to do it) this film illustrates the indisputable importance of independent media in the fight against totalitarian power.

Burma VJ – Reporting from a Closed Country. 2008 / 84 min.

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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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