International Coalition for Filmmakers at Risk-MTR-featured

IDFA, IFFR, and the EFA have joined together to establish the International Coalition for Filmmakers at Risk (ICRF) – a collective response to cases of filmmakers facing severe risk. Its creation is in response to the increasing number of filmmakers being threatened while in their field, and across the world.

The announcement, which came from the Venice International Film Festival, starts a collaboration amongst the international filmmaking community and will “closely collaborate with an international network of strategic partners made up of international film networks, affiliated NGOs, international human rights and ambassadors. It will respond to cases of persecution or threats to the personal safety of filmmakers at risk and will defend their right to continue their work, by mobilizing the international film community.”

On the ICRF initiative, IDFA’s Orwa Nyrabia said: «Film Festivals and institutions have always been involved in supporting filmmakers in danger but never has there been an organization to co-ordinate this.»

IFCR was originally born out of the film industry’s collective experiences campaigning for filmmakers in trouble including Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov who spent five years in captivity.

Sentsov also spoke on the initiative, saying: «No human rights should be violated. No artist’s right to work should be violated. Each of us has an inviolable, guaranteed opportunity for both civic and creative expression. And each of us must take responsibility for the observance of these principles of freedom and art, coming to the aid of our colleagues, talking about the existence of this problem in society, highlighting it in our work and infospace…I urge you to support [the International Coalition for Filmmakers at Risk] because only together we are strong and able to change the world for the better.»