Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival, the festival bringing together audiences, directors, producers, film critics, journalists, friends and family of documentary cinema to spend several days «thinking through film». With its 23rd edition occurring 24-29 October 2019, Modern Times Review spoke with the festival’s Programme Director, Petr Kubica.
Can you explain the overall theme of Ji.hlava 2019? Why is this theme relevant now?
This year’s edition of the Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival will revolve around the theme of environmental protection. Although surrounded by apocalyptic news, our outlook into the future is slightly optimistic. We believe that if we take a responsible attitude, we will handle the situation. We have always tried to keep the environment in mind. But we realised that our environment-friendly attitude has been rather patchy. We want to be consistent and plan our following steps based on the latest facts. We are trying to find savings within our system and perhaps be an inspiration to others. The topic of environmental protection will resonate through the festival programme, industry activities and Ji.hlava’s Inspiration Forum.
Another important programme theme of this year’s edition will be «Women in Transformation», a topic introduced also in the festival trailer. In recent years, the role of women in society has been becoming more prominent, and not only in society but also in documentary filmmaking. Films created by women draw our attention by evocatively opening painful issues, being formally innovative and lending an empathic ear to the stories of others. This year, many such titles are included in the festival programme.
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