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Sheffield Doc/Fest bolsters programming team for 2020

UK-based documentary conference and festival Sheffield Doc/Fest has fortified its programming team with the appointment of Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) programmer Adam Cook and the elevation of Alternate Realities ...
November 21, 2019

UK-based documentary conference and festival Sheffield Doc/Fest has fortified its programming team with the appointment of Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) programmer Adam Cook and the elevation of Alternate Realities producer Joe Cutts.

Cook (pictured left) joins the 2020 edition of the South Yorkshire-set festival as its senior programmer to lead film programming. He replaces Luke Moody who departed the British documentary festival earlier this summer after nearly three years of service.

Most recently, Cook served as founding curator of VIFF’s Future//Present program, focusing on Canadian indie cinema. He was also a programming associate for the Toronto International Film Festival and a programming consultant for Canadian fest Hot Docs.

Cutts (right), meanwhile, has been promoted to curator and head of Sheffield Doc/Fest’s Alternate Realities tract. Since joining the Alternate Realities team in 2011 as programmer and producer, Cutts has played an integral role in shaping the “identity and ethos” of the program by “stripping away the trend of modern technologies and aligning them with timeless art forms,” Sheffield Doc/Fest said in a statement.

In addition, former Locarno and Doclisboa programmer Agnès Wildenstein has joined Doc/Fest as an associate programmer.

The appointments follow the July hiring of Cíntia Gil as Sheffield Doc/Fest’s director, replacing Discovery Networks International executive Elizabeth McIntyre, who departed as CEO and director in August of last year, and deputy director Melanie Iredale, who took the post on an interim basis upon the departure of McIntyre.

Gil, who joined Sheffield this month, previously served as one of the directors of Portugal’s Doclisboa International Film Festival.

Iredale will continue in her role as Sheffield Doc/Fest’s deputy director, a post to which she was appointed in 2014. Patrick Hurley will also continue as director of marketplace and talent to connect creative teams with industry decision makers to get new documentaries made and seen.

The 2020 edition of the festival will also see a selection committee collaborating on the program. It consists of Christopher Small, Onyeka Igwe, Qila Gill, Rabz Lansiquot, Melanie Iredale, Patrick Hurley and Mita Suri.

Program consultants from Brazil, the Middle East, Russia, Southeast Asia and Japan will also join the 2020 festival to “bring a range of regional expertise to Doc/Fest.” Included program consultants are Danielle Arbid, Juliano Gomes, Boris Nelepo, Kong Rithdee and Yu Shimizu.

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