Reading your piece on Britdoc ’07 in your last issue, we were tempted to conclude that you must have been at the wrong event. Did you get lost in Oxford?
Our team and delegates agreed it was an even better event than our fantastic first year. We had just as many delegates despite the biblical flood warnings.
Our pitch forum was stuffed with major international funders including Nancy Abraham from HBO, Cara Mertes from Sundance Institute, Christine Lubrano from IFC, Liesl Copland from Netflix, and Andrea Meditch from Discovery Films called it ‘the best I have ever attended. Overall, it was three of the most productive days of the year.’ Our pitchers included filmmakers Henry Singer, Lucy Walker, Tom Roberts and artist Issac Julien.
You mentioned last year’s sponsor Nokia had not returned, but omitted to say that they had been replaced, thank you very much, by Stella Artois.
You also chose not to ask our festival director about the event’s art theme – exhibitions dotted the venue and artists such as Turner winners Gillian Wearing, Dinos Chapman and Jeremy Deller joined our juries.
But wait, there’s more: we had the UK premieres of Kim Longinotto’s Hold Me Tight, Let Me Go as well as We Are Together, The Devil Came on Horseback, Manda Bala and In the Shadow of the Moon (a film which was born as a feature project at our festival last year).
Most importantly, our legendary live punk rock karaoke party returned – perhaps that’s why one delegate called us ‘better than Glastonbury’ on the feedback form. Sheffield was better than ever. So, come on realscreen, it’s time to start to recognize the exciting things happening to UK doc events.
Jess Search, Britdoc
Oh, and we are delighted to confirm that the dates for the next trailblazing Britdoc are July 23 to 25. Cheers.