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FESTIVALS Germany

DOK Leipzig launches its 55th edition

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- This week, the Saxon event is to screen a record number of world premieres, with films from a record number of countries

DOK Leipzig launches its 55th edition

Leipzig’s CineStar multiplex today launched the 55th edition of DOK Leipzig (October 29 - November 4). After a speech by the Saxon event’s director Claas Danielsen, the festival is to open with a screening of Bulgarian director Theodore Ushev’s animation film Demoni, and the documentary Are You Listening!, the festival’s first ever Bangladeshi film.

This year DOK Leipzig is screening films from a record number of countries, as the official programme’s 198 titles (84 documentaries and 114 animation shorts) were selected from among 2,847 candidates from 113 countries. Including the films selected for its parallel sections, the festival is to offer 360 works from 62 countries (and five continents) until Sunday. Of the 84 documentaries in the official programme, 27 are to be screened as world premieres and 14 as international premieres, which is another record.

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Among the 13 feature-length documentaries in the international competition, 11 are European (co)productions, like Ilian Metev’s Sofia's Last Ambulance [+see also:
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, a Bulgarian documentary screened at the last Cannes Film Festival, Markku Lehmuskallio and Anastasia Lapsui’s 11 Images of a Human from Finland, Ivars Zviedris and Inese Klava’s Documentarian from Latvia, and Lidia Duda’s Entangled from Poland. The five competitive sections in which the Silver and Golden Doves are to be awarded are also to include a competition for animation films and the Young Cinema competition (formerly, the Generation DOK section).

The festival’s many enticing parallel programmes include a retrospective titled "Utopias and realities: The Red Dream Factory" about the great Soviet film studio of Mezhrabpom and a homage to German documentary filmmaker Peter Nestler who filmed people’s daily lives as well as conflicts and dictatorships during the second half of the twentieth century, especially focusing on Latin America. Finally, an extensive programme of documentaries and animation films has been planned for the younger members of the public. Filmmakers with film projects and film professionals will, as usual, take part in the DOK Industry Training and DOK Projects.

(Translated from French)

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