If response from the juries at the 52nd International Leipzig Festival for Documentary and Animated Film is anything to go by, one can say that Les Arrivants (or The Arrivals) from French filmmakers Claudine Bories and Patrice Chagnard has arrived.
The film scored three awards at this year’s fest, including the International Jury for Documentary Film Award for long-form films (which includes a Golden Dove award and €10,000 donated by Telepool GMBH), the Prize of the Trade Union ver.di (which comes with €2,500) and the Ecumenical Jury Award. Colombian filmmaker Tayo Cortés received the Silver Dove in that category and €3,000 for La Casa (The House).
Other winners included Maggie vaknar på balkongen, or Maggie in Wonderland, by Swedish filmmakers Mark Hammarberg, Ester Martin Bergsmark and Beatrice Maggie Andersson, which nabbed the Doc Alliance Award and €5,000. Chemia (or Chemo) from Polish filmmaker Pawel Lozinski received the the MDR Film Prize along with €3,000. The International Jury for Young Talent Competition awarded Canadian filmmaker Laura Bari with the Talent Dove and €10,000 towards her next doc project for Antoine, and the international jury awarded a Golden Dove for a short form project and €5,000 to Canada’s Shira Avni for Tying Your Own Shoes. The German Jury for Documentary Film gave a Golden Dove along with €10,000 to Rich Brother by Insa Onken, while the Prize of the Fédération Internationale de la Presse Cinématographique was handed to Cooking History by Peter Kerekes.
Attendance statistics were announced on Wednesday, and mark a considerable increase over last year’s event. According to the festival’s press office, 34,200 visitors took in the 330 productions aired in 12 cinemas, as well as the industry component of the fest. That’s an increase of 22% over last year, and higher than the 31,000 reported for the 50th anniversary edition. ‘I am delighted with the success of the 52nd International Leipzig Festival for Documentary and Animated Film,’ said Danielsen. Citing ‘packed cinemas, productive industry events, [and] intensive discussions about the films and the trends in the international documentary and animated film scene as well as the future of public service television,’ Danielsen says the fest ‘has once again strengthened its reputation as an international center for documentary films.’