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ASTRA 2020 DokTank

Eleven documentary projects to be pitched in Astra’s DokTank


- The selected projects hail from Romania, Hungary, Italy, Russia, Canada and Jordan

Eleven documentary projects to be pitched in Astra’s DokTank
Don't Worry, Sari! by Sari Haragonics

On 18 October, the Astra Film Festival, Romania’s biggest documentary gathering, kicks off its five-day, exclusively online industry event, DokTank. The 11 selected projects hail from Romania, Hungary, Italy, Russia, Canada and Jordan, to name only the main production countries.

Astra's programme coordinator, Adina Marin, tells Cineuropa, “During the selection process, the most remarkable thing emerged: although COVID-19 had already altered everything around us by the time these projects were submitted, the determination of the filmmakers to complete their movies remains intact. And so it should be, especially as the projects in this session are perhaps the last ones conceived before the pandemic. A recurrent focus falls on family dynamics in a changing world. More often than not, the families in question are the filmmakers’ own. But what makes these projects worth selecting for pitching is their multifold approach and the ways they find to analyse family relationships in the broader social and political context of the region.”

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Astra’s entire industry platform has had to be re-designed, as the event will be held exclusively online this year. DokTank will kick off with a discussion with renowned UK editor Andrew C Evans and will also include a case study on Radu Ciorniciuc’s Acasă - My Home [+see also:
film review
interview: Radu Ciorniciuc
film profile
, which was developed at DokTank 2018 and then had its world premiere in the Documentary Competition at Sundance 2020.

Marin tells Cineuropa that an online event may have its downsides, but it has it perks, too: “We can count on the digital presence of more industry experts, who might find it easier to integrate their participation into their calendars, without the need to travel. Also, the digital calendar is a little more generous than the physical one, and we will have more time available for one-to-one meetings. There are obvious technical challenges lying ahead, but we are confident. If the filmmakers have decided not to give up on their projects, then they deserve a good industry programme, and we shall do our best to offer it to them.”

The 11 projects selected are as follows:

Don't Worry, Sari! - Sari Haragonics (Hungary)
Greek Wife - Polina Moshenska (Ukraine/Greece/Germany)
Letter - Carmen Tofeni (Romania/Croatia/Belgium)
Lost and Found - Laurenţiu Garofeanu (Romania/Canada)
Parentwood - David Power (Romania/Italy)
Prophet of Doom - Nikolai Galitzine (Russia/USA/Spain/Italy/France/UK)
Spirits Rebellious - Marlene Edoyan (Canada)
Swinging Fields - Sareen Hairabedian (Jordan/Ireland/Armenia)
The Wedding Operation - Daniel Barnuti (Romania/Netherlands/Jordan/South Africa/Qatar)
Vivien Will Be Adult - Eszter Hajdu (Hungary)
Without Property - Adrian Dohotaru (Romania)

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