Celebrating 17 Years of Film.Biz.Fans.
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December 3, 2004 2:00 AM
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iPOP at the International Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA)

iPOP at the International Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA)

by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE

Before departing for Amsterdam to attend the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, I had images of wild nights, the Red Light District, and "Coffee" Shops. Well, honestly, while we had a terrific stay, our time at the doc fest (perhaps appropriately) was a more sober affair. We did take a walk through the Red Light District though (just a walk), and no "Coffee" Shops for us (others we knew did visit them). That is not to say we didn't have a good time. The festival headquarters, 'Debalie' was a hopping social whirl, where the fest and others hosted nightly gatherings. While the place was fun, people sensitive to cigarette smoke be warned... It was a forest fire in there. Still, tons of filmmakers and lots of talk about George W. Bush...










Legendary "stars" of doc came together in Amsterdam for a Master Class discussing the genre (Robert Drew, Richard Leacock, Albert Maysles, and Frederick Wiseman) as well as vet doc filmmaker, Joan Churchill. Betsy McLane from IDA hosted the lumes in a large (and almost full) theater opening with a conversation she had overheard among the crowd of festivalgoers earlier that day. Apparently someone suggested that Americans attending the festival should 'apologize' for the recent election, and then called the comment "insidious."


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE








"Shape of the Moon" producer and screenwriter Hetty Naaijkens-Retel Helmrich hung out at the City Theater following the screening of her film, which opened the IDFA festival to a packed house. The crowds hung out in the theater's lobby for a party, and it seemed like almost everyone lit up.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE















Mary Kerr from SilverDocs with "Beauty Academy of Kabul" director Liz Mermin at festival headquarters, Debalie. The venue became quite a center of socializing for festgoers including the indieWIRE folks. Basically, we walked there from our hotel everyday, and attended screenings across the street at the City Theater, the three points of our Amsterdam experience for most of the first five days there.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE








Diana Holtzberg (left) from Films Transit with "Keep Not Silent" director Ilil Alexander and Debbie Zimmerman from Women Make Movies at Debalie one fine Amsterdam evening. Holtzberg took it upon herself to introduce iPOP to the filmmakers that evening, walking us around and suggesting we take snaps for iPOP. We obliged. Thanks Diana.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE















"Shake Hands with the Devil: The Journey of Romeo Dallaire" director Peter Raymont gave us the scoop that his film had been accepted at Sundance when we met him at the Silverdocs party at Debaile (which of course everyone now knows from reading indieWIRE faithfully, of course).


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE








David Wilson (left) from the True/False Film Festival (Columbia, MO) was drafted by indieWIRE to do coverage at IDFA, and now even has his own blog. He joined fellow doc fest organizers including Amy King (to his left) from Silver Docs, the head of the Chicago Documentary Film Festival and SilverDocs festival director Patricia Finneran. The Silver Docs people were fun to hang out with. One night we, Amy, and Mary from the fest as well as David Wilson and (and me) decided to run around an IDFA party taking random pics of three people we each thought were "hot." A great collection of photos...


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE















Also a hanging out fav during the fest was David Flamholc, director of "House of the Tiger King." He promised to subscribe to indieWIRE.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE








Jonathan Stack (left), director of "Liberia: An Uncivil War" with Ed Lachman, director of the festival short "Cell Stories." Lachman was also cinematographer of "Far From Heaven" and co-director of "Ken Park" (a movie that's too hot for the USA).


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE















Filmmaker Jay Rosenblatt, director of two festival shorts, "I Like It A Lot" and "Phantom Limb" finding some precious space to stand during the nominations ceremony. It was packed, but at least it wasn't very smoky.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE








"Parental Instinct" director Murray Nossel (right) and the film's producer, Craig Harwood at the office picking up some tickets for some screenings. Nossel came right up to us and asked that we see his film. It was one of our favs.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE















"First Appearance" jurors (left to right): festival organizer Nodi Murphy from South Africa, filmmaker Ineke Smits from Holland, filmmaker Ditsi Carolino from the Phillipines, indieWIRE's Eugene Hernandez, jury coordinator Reina Hilarides, and festival head and film critic Jean-Pierre Rehm from France squeezed together for this group shot at the nominations ceremony.


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE








First Appearance award winner Ileana Stanculescu ("Podul Peste Tisa") with her proud father after Friday's awards ceremony. Photo by Eugene Hernandez/indieWIRE


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE















IDFA chief Ally Derks at the festival awards ceremony. Not to sound too brown-nosey, but the IDFA staff really were great hosts, and we had a terrific time (we want to come back!)


Photo by Brian Brooks/indieWIRE

If you would like to suggest iPOP: ON THE SCENE coverage please contact us at office@indiewire.com or at the indieWIRE office:


indieWIRE

304 Hudson Street, 6th Floor

New York, NY 10013

Phone 212/675-3908

Fax 212/504-8263

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