Posts Tagged ‘FIFDH’

News from the human rights film front (2019)

March 20, 2019

The HRW festival in London is still running (https://ff.hrw.org/london) but others have finished and here is a selection of the wining films:

ONE WORLD FESTIVAL

The film Heart of Stone has taken the Best Film prize at this year’s edition of the One World festival of human rights documentaries in Prague. The winning documentary is about an Afghan refugee in France. The Best Director award went to Denmark’s Mads Brugger, maker of Cold Case Hammarskjold.

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The 2019 FIFDH [see: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2019/01/20/17th-edition-of-the-geneva-international-film-festival-and-forum-on-human-rights-from-8-to-17-march-2019/]. The awards list is as follows (extract):

Grand Prize of Geneva

Endowed with CHF 10,000 – Offered by the City and State of Geneva: Delphine et Carole, Insoumuses, by Callisto McNulty Learn more

Gilda Vieira de Mello Prize in tribute to her son Sergio Vieira de Mello

Endowed with CHF 5,000 – Offered by the Barbara Hendricks Foundation for Peace and Reconciliation: On her Shoulders, by Alexandria Bombach Learn more

Youth Jury Prize

Endowed with CHF 500 – Offered by Peace Brigades International (PBI): Still Recording, by Ghiath Ayoub and Saeed Al Batal Learn more

Endowed with CHF 500 – Offered by the Eduki Foundation: Carmen y Lola  by Arantxa Echevarría Learn more

Grand Prize for Fiction

Endowed with CHF 10,000 – Offered by the Hélène and Victor Barbour Foundation: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, by Chiwetel Ejiofor Learn more

Prize of OMCT

Endowed with CHF 5,000 – Offered by the World Organization Against Torture: Congo Lucha, by Marlène Rabaud Learn more

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And there is an award-winning Bahamian film “Cargo” which is being shown in cinemas: At the age of 9, Bahamian writer/director Kareem Mortimer saw haunting images of the bloated bodies of Haitian would-be migrants washed up on a beach. Apparently they were trapped and locked in the hold of a ship by a smuggler who did not have the decency to set them free. It was this experience that inspired him to make the drama/thriller feature film Cargo. The film previously debuted in Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Curacao, Jamaica, Guyana, Grenada, Suriname and St Lucia and will be released in the Trinidad, US and Canada in the summer. It has won five awards: Best Feature, Silicon Valley African Film Festival; Bahamian Icon Award; Best Film, Haiti International Film Festival, Los Angeles; Trident Award, Barbados Independent Film Festival; and Amnesty International Human Rights Prize for Film, TT Film Festival in 2017.
The poster for the film Cargo.

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https://www.radio.cz/en/section/news/french-doc-heart-of-stone-takes-top-prize-at-one-world-festival

https://fifdh.org/en/edition-2019/news/article/le-palmares-integral-du-fifdh-2019-349874

https://newsday.co.tt/2019/03/18/award-winning-bahamian-film-cargo-for-tt/

 

17th edition of the Geneva International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights: from 8 to 17 March 2019

January 20, 2019

With a poster created from a photography by Zuko Wonderfull Sikhafungana, filmmaker and theatre director from South Africa, the 17th edition of the Geneva International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights (FIFDH) will take place from 8 to 17 March 2019 in more than 60 locations of the Greater Geneva and French-speaking Switzerland. The programme for this edition will be unveiled on Thursday, 14 February. The online ticketing will be open the same day.

See also: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2018/03/19/awards-given-at-the-16th-human-rights-film-festival-in-geneva/

https://fifdh.org/en/the-festival

Human Rights Films: call for action or entertainment?

March 20, 2018

The 1972 photo of a young girl running naked in Trang Bang screaming in pain from the effects of napalm had a profound influence on the public’s perception of the horrors of the Vietnam War. The 2015 photo of a three-year-old refugee boy drowned in the Mediterranean Sea in Turkey also had a profound influence of the public’s perception, this time on the desperate plight of millions of refugees. The images of Phan Thi Kim Phuc and Aylan Kurdi are iconic representations. Both capture larger stories; both images express powerful narratives. 

Visualization is story telling in another form. ……Marshall McLuhan in the 1960s introduced the notion that the medium of communication – movies for instance – change how a message is perceived. Directors can alter time sequences; background music can play directly to our emotions. We have entered new forms of communication that are just beginning to be understood.
The recent Geneva International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights was a significant event; 61 films shown in 57 venues in the Swiss Romand and Grand Genève, 28 debates and discussions with important figures such as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Catalonian leader Carles Puidgemont as well as a human rights film tour organized by Swiss embassies in 45 countries.
…The images were shocking, almost numbing. We in the theatre became more than viewers, we became indirect witnesses through the lens of the film.
Several directors participated in debates following the presentations. They all expressed hope that the revelations shown on the screen would encourage reaction from the audience beyond the theatre. The purpose of the film, many argued, was to move the attendees and future viewers from watchers – i.e., indirect witnesses – to activists. The films, according to their creators, were calls to action.
McLuhan is most pertinent here. Watching a movie, any movie, is passive/emotional. The director leads us through what he or she wants us to see and feel. We are being literally directed. At a human rights film festival, we are directed, made aware, and called to action. The message of the medium is more than just perception; it is a motivation to do something. But the screen is just a screen, and a silver screen at that. The films were expertly produced. Most were technologically impressive. The cruelty and crudeness of human suffering were presented with all that modernity could offer.
It is the contrast between the rawness of grave breaches of human dignity and the sophistication of the current cinema that somehow reduced the power of the message. If, according to McLuhan, the medium is the message, then the films themselves – with all their slick professionalism – somehow played against a call to action. The excellence of the films was in contradiction to the cruelty and chaos of what they were showing.
.. Human rights activists are turning to visualization to appeal to larger and larger audiences. Visualization is today’s most powerful means of communication and it is becoming more and more sophisticated. The object of human rights’ film makers is to get the message out to the largest audience in an appealing way. The written era of Gutenberg is no longer hot. It is easier to teach students World War II by viewing Saving Private Ryan than to have them read weighty tomes of historical documentation.
If the message of human rights’ films is to witness human rights violations and call to action, professional presentations may be counter-productive. Movies are fundamentally entertainment; however instructive they may be. But when it comes to human rights and their violations, there should be as little entertainment as possible.

 

Awards given at the 16th Human Rights Film Festival in Geneva

March 19, 2018

The FIFDH just announced the OFFICIAL AWARDS of its 16th festival (2018) in Geneva. [https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2018/02/27/16th-international-film-festival-and-forum-on-human-rights-starts-on-9-march/]. Here a summary: Read the rest of this entry »

16th International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights starts on 9 March

February 27, 2018

The full program in the link below with many interesting films and debates. Special attention should go to:

Defending the Defenders

Everywhere defenders of our fundamental freedoms are harassed, imprisoned, tortured, even in countries with a strong tradition of defense of human rights. 

In 2017, 197 environmental activists were murdered in the world. Human rights organizations are themselves prevented from carrying out their work, and are sometimes directly banned or expelled from certain countries. An increasing number of governments are making concerted efforts to prevent the International Criminal Court and the Human Rights Council from fulfilling their mission. A disturbing reality as the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders is about to celebrate its 20th anniversary this year. The film Silas by Hawa Essuman and Anjali Nayar, chronicles the life of its eponymous main character in his fight over the years against convicted war-criminal Charles Taylor and the illegal deforestation and corruption in his native Liberia.

SCHEDULE

Co-presented with the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (DFAE), the European Union’s mission to the United Nations and other international organizations in Geneva, International Service Human Rights (ISHR), the World Organization Against Torture (OMCT) and Lawyers Without Borders Switzerland

Introduction
Peter Sørensen | Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the UN and other International Organizations in Geneva
Sandra Lendenmann Winterberg | Head of the section for Human Rights Policy, Human Security Division, DFAE
Asli Erdoğan | Author, Journalist and Defender of Human and Minority Rights
Gerald Staberock | Secretary General of the World Organization Against Torture (OMCT)

Panelists
Maryam Al-Khawaja | Human rights activist, Head of External Relations and Vice-President of the Bahraini Center for Human Rights
Michel Forst | UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders
Kate Gilmore | United Nations Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights
Claudia Samayoa | Co-founder and coordinator of Unidad de Protección de Defensoras y Defensores de Derechos Humanos Guatemala – UDEFEGUA, and member of executive council of the OMCT
Moderated by
Gunilla Von Hall | UN correspondent in Geneva of the Swedish Newspaper Svenska Dagbladet

https://www.fifdh.org/site/en/programme

For last year’s program: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2017/02/14/international-film-festival-and-forum-on-human-rights-10-19-march-2017-in-geneva/

 

Video interview with Cleopatra KAMBUGU from Uganda

April 25, 2017

On 24 April 2017 the ISHR published this interview with Cleopatra KAMBUGU, grants administrator at UHAI EASHRI and transgender activist in Uganda. Cleopatra was featured in “Pearl of Africa“, a movie shown at the Geneva international Film Festival and Human Rights Forum and spoke  about the challenges she faces in her struggle to have transgender rights recognised in her country. More information on UHAI-EASHRI: http://www.uhai-eashri.org

International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights: 10-19 March 2017 in Geneva

February 14, 2017

The International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights (FIFDH) is an international event dedicated to film and human rights. For the past 15 years, the festival has taken place in the heart of Geneva, the human rights capital, parallel to the main session of the UN Human Rights Council in March. Each evening, the FIFDH provides high-level debates in which human rights violations are denounced and debated, wherever they occur, including those overlooked by the United Nations and not attract international attention. Diplomats, NGOs, victims, artists, philanthropists, activists, journalists, decision makers, and the general public are invited to debate their views in this unique setting. All the discussions are transmitted live online and have their own dedicated hashtags : you can submit questions and engage with the debate directly, wherever you are.

Prominent personalities who have participated in these debates include : Nobel Prize laureates Shirin Ebadi and Joseph Stiglitz, High Commissioners Navi Pillay and Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein, whistleblowers Edward Snowden, Julian Assange and Jesselyn Radack, doctor Denis Mukwege, activists Pussy Riot and the Yes Men, artists JR and Ai Weiwei, lawyers Fatou Bensouda, Carla del Ponte and Baltasar Garzon, diplomats Leila Shahid and Samantha Power, journalist Anna Politkovskaïa, as well as leading human rights thinkers Edgar Morin and Stéphane Hessel.

  

The FILM FESTIVAL runs two international competitions – fiction and documentary – offering a world class selection of films that challenge the ways in which we see the world, in the presence of filmmakers and artists turned protagonists. Two prestigious Juries award Le Grand Prix de Genève (10’000 €), Le Grand Prix Fiction (10’000 €) and the Prix Sergio Vieira de Mello (5000€).

The FIFDH reaches out to young people: more than half of its audience is younger than 35! We offer an ambitious and exciting programme of films and debates for school students. The Festival also schedules special screenings for students of the University of Geneva, the Graduate Institute and film schools, complete with workshops and dedicated Masterclasses.
Source: International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights, Geneva

14th International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights opens in Geneva on 4 March

February 24, 2016

The 14th edition of the “Festival du Film et Forum International sur les Droits Humains (FIFDH), will take place in Geneva from 4 to 13 March 2016. 200 film makers and international personalities are expected to show their films and participate in the debates.

This edition is dedicated to memory of the artist Leila Alaoui, who fell victim to the attack in Ouagadougou (https://thoolen.wordpress.com/2016/01/28/14th-edition-of-the-geneva-human-rights-film-festival-fifdh-from-4-to-13-march-2016/). The opening takes place in the presence of te UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein and the festival closes with ‘Made in France‘ by Nicolas Boukhrief. For the full programme follow the link: http://www.fifdh.org/site/en/program

Source: International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights, Geneva

14th Edition of the Geneva Human Rights Film Festival (FIFDH) from 4 to 13 March 2016

January 28, 2016

Save the dates: From 4 to 13 March 2016, the Geneva Human Rights Film Festival (FIFDH) will welcome close to 200 filmmakers and international personalities. This year, for the first time, the Festival will be also screened in 11 municipalities of the Greater Geneva area, including Anières, Bernex, Meyrin and Chêne Bourg and  We also screen films in Lausanne, in partnership with Cinémathèque Suisse and Amnesty International. While waiting for the full programme’s announcement on the 23th of February, you could have a look at the debates of the 2015 edition.

Leila Alaoui ©Augustin Le GallFrench-Moroccan photographer and video artist Leila Aloui died tragically on the 18th of January 2016 following injuries sustained during the attacks in Ouagadougou. She was to be honored during the upcoming edition of the Festival and was responsible for the photograph featured on the poster. The Festival will pay tribute to her during the 2016 edition.
VOLUNTEERS. The Festival welcomes volunteers from 4 to 13 March: More information here.

Films help educate students in Geneva about human rights

May 12, 2015

It may not be news to the readers of this blog but it is good to heart the Office of the Un High Commissioner for G+Human Rights say it: “Movies are powerful” said Elena Ippoliti, Human Rights Officer for the UN Human Rights Office. “Sometimes, young people can open their eyes more through an eight-minute film, than through a two-hour lecture.

For a decade the Office has partnered with the International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights (FIFDH) in carrying out an educational programme, which takes place during the annual film festival. It provides screenings and discussions of a selection of human rights films for students mainly attending the secondary schools in Geneva. The festival was getting good audiences, but films were being seen by people who were already familiar with the issues. He said reaching out to schools seemed a natural fit.

Ippoliti said the education programme is also a chance for the Office to work at a local level in the headquarters host city of Geneva: “We, OHCHR Geneva, work at the global level. But by working with schools here, we also reach out to the local level,”.

Films help educate students about human rights.