Festival, Events and Awards

DOCSBarcelona puts roles and rights on the agenda; Canadians head to Sithengi; A Wedding in Ramallah honored with opening the Margaret Mead fest
October 31, 2002

What will they be talking about at DOCSBarcelona? One panel at the documentary event (November 7 to 9) will discuss whether producers and commissioning editors have a legitimate role to play in the final editing process; another session will see a lawyer discussing the rights of writers. Also on the agenda: a debate between two directors and a producer, who will explore the blurring line between fiction and non-fiction in contemporary doc-making.

The Canadian Film and Television Producers Association will be sending a delegation of 13 producers, distributors, broadcasters and government representatives to the Sithengi South African International Film & TV Market in Cape Town (November 11 to 14). They will be investigating co-production opportunities. Among the attendees will be Barbara Williams, the senior commissioning executive for documentary channels at Toronto-based Alliance Atlantis, and Guy Mayson, the association’s executive VP.

The Margaret Mead Film & Video Festival will be held in New York, U.S. November 7 to 10. It will screen 39 documentaries from 19 countries, opening with Australian-Palestinian Sherine Samala‘s A Wedding in Ramallah and closing with New Zealand director Annie Goldson‘s Georgie Girl.

The final deadline for submitting a film to the Director’s View Film Festival is November 25. The festival, which will be held in South Salem, U.S., has three categories: feature length, short and documentary. For more information, visit

Milia 2003 will take place in March instead of February. The dates of the Cannes, France, digital and interactive content trade event have been changed to March 26 to 28 so that it will follow MIPTV (March 24 to 28), making it easier for delegates to attend both events.

The Sedona International Film Festival & Workshop has issued a call for submissions (features, shorts, animation or documentaries) for its event, which will be held February 28 to March 2, 2003, in Arizona, U.S. The deadline for submissions is December 6. Visit for more information. The International Documentary Association (IDA) announced the winners of their annual IDA Distinguished Documentary Awards competition. The top awards went to Mai’s America, directed by Marlo Poras, and Lourdes Portillo’s Señorita Estravgiada (feature); History Undercover: Inside Pol Pot’s Secret Prison, executive produced by Bill Brummel and produced by Greg DeHart (ongoing series); American Experience: Woodrow Wilson, codirected by Carl Byker and Mitch Wilson (limited series); and Erin Flannery’s Judy’s Time (short).

The Rory Peck Trust awards promoting the work of freelancers in news broadcasting were handed out on October 30th in London, U.K. The recipient of the Freelancers’ Choice Award, given to a person who has made an outstanding contribution to the work of freelancers, is actually a policeman. New York Police Department Lieutenant Timothy McGinn saved a group of people trapped in a building near the collapsed south tower of the World Trade Center on September 11th. McGinn created an escape route for the group, which included American freelance cameraman Joseph McCathy (whose film of the events was nominated for a Rory Peck), by shooting out a ground-floor window. A double award-winner was Najibullah Quaraishi, whose film SAS in action in Afghanistan won the Sony International Impact Award and the prize for Best Hard News Footage. The Features Award went to Dodge Billingsley and Damien Degueldre for the House of War.

About The Author
Jonathan Paul is a Toronto-based writer into creativity, content, advertising, tech, comics, video games, film, TV, time and space travel.