Thessaloniki Sets Line-up For Fifth Annual Documentary Festival
by Wendy Mitchell
The fifth-annual Thessaloniki Documentary Film Festival, Images of the 21st Century, will screen 147 films from February 28-March 9. Screenings in various selections will include: Jeff Blitz's "Spellbound" (U.S.), Michael Apted's "Married in America," Rakshsan Bani-Etemad's "Our Times" (Iran), Carles Bosch's "Balseros" (Spain), Jose Padilha's "Bus 174" (Brazil), Yun Hwang's "Farewell" (South Korea), Eugene Jarecki's "The Trials of Henry Kissinger" (U.S.), Brian Hill's "Nobody Somebody" (U.K.), Michael Coultier's "A History of Sex" (U.S.), and Victor Kossakovsky's "Hush" (Russia).
Special sections will include a focus on Palestine, with nine films including James Longley's "Gaza Strip," Jenny Morgan's "After Jenin," and the collective project "Letters from Palestine." A tribute to producer Margie Smilow will include screenings of docs about Arthur Freed, Busby Berkeley, Leonard Bernstein, and Kurosawa. The Nicholas Philibert spotlight will include his acclaimed "Etre Et Avoir" (To Be and To Have), plus four other docs. The tribute to Michael Moore will screen "Roger and Me," "Pets or Meat: the Return to Flint," "Canadian Bacon," "The Big One," and his Oscar-nominated "Bowling for Columbine."
Local offerings will include Greek docs in competition and in non-competitive screenings, plus tributes to Greek documentarians Giannis Smaragdis, Maria Hadjimichali Papaliou, and Apostolos Krionas.
The International Documentary Market, in cooperation with ERT, will run March 3-7. Thirty-five buyers from 18 countries are expected to attend, including six Greek buyers. The market will exclusively present 192 docs. There will also be a pitching forum, organized by European Documentary Network, held March 5-9. That workshop will include 24 producers who will get the chance to pitch to a panel of European commissioning editors. Other events timed with the festival include an Andres Serrano photo exhibit, a DJ set from Germany's Beefcake, and a forum about "Palestine: War and Children." For further information, visit www.filmfestival.gr/docfestival/2003/uk/index.html.
[indieWIRE managing editor Wendy Mitchell will be attending the festival from March 5-9.]