The Locarno Film Festival welcomes the winner of the Doc Alliance Selection Award for the first time
by Giorgia Del Don
- LOCARNO 2015: This year’s winner is Iraqi film Homeland (Iraq Year Zero) by Abbas Fahdel, which was nominated by the Visions du réel Festival in Nyon
Since 2008 the Doc Alliance platform, which was set up with the aim of promoting diversity in documentary films and encouraging their circulation, has been awarding films the Doc Alliance Selection Award. This prestigious award (which takes the shape of €5000), is awarded every year to the best European documentary, selected independently by each of the festivals that are members of the platform: CPH:DOX Copenhagen, Doclisboa, DOK Leipzig, FID Marseille, Jihlava IDFF, Docs Against Gravity FF and the Swiss Visions du réel Festival of Nyon. Doc Alliance is truly a platform that aims to make the exchange between directors and producers more dynamic by proposing alternative ways of circulating films that often struggle to find a place in the market. Each of these major festivals therefore nominates a film it thinks is symbolic. The selection of seven documentaries in competition (five of which were screened at last year’s Visions du réel Festival) focuses mainly on first films or emerging directors whose work deserves to be seen and commended. At the same time, these festivals also nominate a local film critic to participate in the final selection.
This year’s winner is Iraqi film Homeland (Iraq Year Zero) by Abbas Fahdel, which was nominated by the Visions du réel Festival of Nyon. It is a powerful and intimate film that is not afraid to speak out about the pain of a people, the Iraqi people, through the tragic story of the family of the director himself. It is simply ‘necessary’ in the words of Luciano Barisone, the Director of the Swiss festival, who was the first person to have truly believed in the film.
These are the films that were nominated this year:
Homeland (Iraq Year Zero) by Abbas Fahdel (IQ) nominated by Visions du Réel
Walking Under Water by Eliza Kubarska (UK/PL/DE) nominated by Docs Against Gravity FF
Stranded in Canton [+see also:
film profile]by Måns Månsson (SE/DK/CN) nominated by CPH:DOX
Illusion by Sofia Marques (PT) nominated by Doclisboa
I Am the Peopleby Anna Roussillon (FR) nominated by Jihlava IDFF
Haunted by Liwaa Yazji (DE/SY) nominated by FID Marseille
All Things Ablaze by Oleksandr Techynskyi, Aleksey Solodunov, Dmitry Stoykov (UA) nominated by DOK Leipzig
(Translated from Italian)