Sarajevo Film Festival 2024

FIFDH announces 2024 Impact Filmmaking for Social Justice webinar details

The upcoming «Impact Days Webinar» on 18 January, 2024, from FIFDH, promises to delve into the intricate and often perilous world of impact filmmaking, particularly in the realm of social justice and human rights. The focus is on a critical question: How do we safeguard the activists we spotlight while amplifying their message?

Documentaries have long been a potent medium for bringing to light social injustices and human rights abuses. They offer a visceral connection to issues that are often abstract or distant to the general public. Yet, this power comes with significant responsibility. The webinar addresses this duality head-on, exploring the balance between exposure and protection.

The case study of Delikado, a documentary about environmental defenders in the Philippines, is particularly poignant. Nominated for an Emmy in the category of outstanding investigative documentary, it’s a testament to the impact of such films. However, it also underscores the risks involved for both the subjects and filmmakers. Karl Malakunas, the film’s director, and producer Kara Magsanoch-Alikpala will share their experiences, offering a rare glimpse into the challenges of creating impactful documentaries in politically sensitive environments.

The panel discussion further expands on this theme, bringing together filmmakers and activists like Zippy Kimundu, Meena Nanji, Evelyn Wanjugu Kimathi, and Elise Golay. Their diverse backgrounds and experiences promise a rich dialogue on the ethical and practical aspects of impact filmmaking.

One of the critical issues likely to emerge in this discussion is the delicate balance between raising awareness and inadvertently increasing the risks for activists. In countries where dissent is often met with harsh reprisals, the spotlight of a documentary can be both a shield and a target. It’s an essential discussion for anyone involved in the intersection of film, activism, and human rights – a nuanced exploration of the power of storytelling and the responsibilities it entails.

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