The Australian International Documentary Conference has thrown open its doors for the 2010 edition at the Adelaide Hilton in South Australia. Running from February 23 to 26, AIDC aims to gather the global doc community in Australia, with this year’s conference also serving as the launch of the First Factual Films Festival.
AIDC Executive Director Joost den Hartog says he is delighted with AIDC 2010′s start. ‘Around 500 delegates are attending AIDC this year and there was a real buzz at the opening session last night,’ he says of the conference kick-off, in which Australian doc-maker Tom Zubrycki made the inaugural Stanley Hawes Address, named after the former producer-in-chief of the Australian government’s filmmaking body. ‘We are off to a good start and expecting a productive event.’
The opening address also included Zubrycki receiving the Stanley Hawes Award for his contributions to Australian documentary cinema, which include Molly & Mobarak and Kemira – Diary of a Strike, both of which were featured in the inaugural edition of the First Factual Films Fest.
Also known as F4, the festival is the only one of its kind in Australia, wholly dedicated to documentary films. It runs alongside AIDC, and will showcase the first films of filmmakers Gillian Armstrong, Jonathan Stack, Brian Hill and Zubrycki. Eight emerging doc-makers also get a chance to screen their film in the fest: Trevor Almeida, David Downey, William Head, Stella Kinsella, Kim Munro, Bronwyn Purvis, Telen Rodwell and Elizabeth Tadic.
Of course, the popular MeetMarket, in which filmmakers get matched up with national and international executive producers, broadcasters and distributors to talk about their projects, is a key attraction for the conference. This year, 25 documentary projects have been selected, with 20 slots for Australian projects and for the first time, five slots dedicated to Asian filmmakers’ projects.
The program for the rest of the festival includes a keynote speech from Original Productions’ Thom Beers and In Conversation sessions with Alan Rosenthal, SBS’s Matt Campbell and ABC TV’s Stuart Menzies and Dasha Ross. Other panels include the intriguingly titled ‘Why Let Ethics Get in the Way of a Good Story?’ and ‘Love, Lust and Lies – a Q&A with Gillian Armstrong.’