The second annual Doc Day at the Cannes Film Festival will bring filmmakers and documentary professionals together to discuss the various ways non-fiction storytellers can help tackle the many challenges facing the world’s “disrupted societies.” The full day event taking place on May 23 will focus on the theme of how to use documentaries as a tool to promote awareness and togetherness around the world.
“In a world evolving from a society of facts to one of the big data, with fake news and populism invading the spheres of social networks, politics and press, documentary filmmakers are an essential voice to bring independent analysis through storytelling that helps to inform, engage and inspire us all to think critically and deeply about the challenges facing democracy in this Post-Truth Era,” Julie Bergeron, head of industry programs at the Marché du Film, said in a statement.
The day will begin with a conversation between filmmaker Amos Gitaï and critic Jean-Michel Frodon about Gitaï’s new film, “West of the Jordan River (Field Diary Revisited),” which will play in this year’s Directors’ Fortnight section. The discussion will be followed by a roundtable entitled “Documentaries in the Post-Truth Era,” that will include Kathleen Lingo of The New York Times’ Op-Docs platform and IDA Enterprise Documentary Fund director Carrie Lozano. Gonzalo Lamela, the director of Films For Transparency, will add to the discussion with his take on how to fight corruption and advocate for a more equitable world through film.
Kaouther Ben Hania, director of Un Certain Regard selection “Beauty and the Dogs,” will also lead a panel entitled “Women Voices from the Arab World,” featuring filmmakers Jihan El-Tahri and May Odeh and Dox Box Director Diana El Jeiroudi.
“We are often feeling powerless witnesses of the situation in the Middle East and Africa,” Pierre-Alexis Chevit, manager of the Doc Corner at the Marché du Film, said in the statement. “We felt it was important at the Doc Day to bring voices from audacious women from the Arab World who have the courage to give their insider’s overview with some achieved successes and battles still to come.”
Doc Day will close with a conversation between filmmaker Barbet Schroeder and International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam founder and festival director Ally Derks, about Schroeder’s “The Venerable W.,” the last installment in his Trilogy of Evil, selected for a Special Screening in Official Selection.
The 2017 Cannes Film Festival runs from May 17 to May 28.