IFI Stranger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival is delighted to welcome the following guests for Q&As at this year’s Festival. Many more filmmakers will attend and take part in the festival’s special events: Documentary Industry Day, How to Make a Winning Documentary Short and Getting Places in Feature Documentary.
We are Many
Over the past 15 years, Amir Amirani has made films for some of British television’s most prestigious series, including Arena (And the Winner Is), Timewatch (Concorde – A Love Story), Picture This (Hallelujah Hendrix), Correspondent (Letter to America and Addicted to Arms) and Newsnight. Two of his documentaries have been nominated for an Amnesty International Award and One World Broadcasting Trust Award respectively.
Amir has produced and presented programmes for BBC Radio 4. They include In Business, From Our Own Correspondent, The Today Programme, and documentaries on Iranian comedy and poetry. His journalism includes writing for The Guardian, New Statesman, New Scientist, Business Traveller Asia, and the Economist Intelligence Unit. We Are Many is his first feature film.
Night Will Fall
André Singer has been a documentary filmmaker for over 40 years. He was Editor of Granada Television’s Disappearing World series during the 1980s. He ran the BBC Documentary Department’s Independent Unit in the 1990s where he founded the award-winning documentary strand Fine Cut (now Storyville). André has been responsible for several 100 hours of factual programs for the international TV market and has produced or executive produced numerous award winning cinema documentaries. He has worked with Werner Herzog for over 20 years having produced or executive produced 14 of Herzog’s films. Andre is the Executive Producer of the 2014 BAFTA-winning and Oscar nominated documentary feature The Act of Killing.
Love Is All
Kim Longinotto studied camera and directing at England’s National Film School, where she made Pride of Place, a critical look at her boarding school, and Theatre Girls, documenting a hostel for homeless women.
Her first film in Japan was Eat the Kimono, about the controversial feminist performer Hanayagi Genshu; Hidden Faces, the internationally acclaimed documentary about Egyptian women followed, then The Good Wife of Tokyo which explores women, love and marriage in Japanese society. Next Longinotto directed Dream Girls, a BBC-produced documentary of the spectacular Japanese musical theatre company, the Tararazuka revue; and Shinjuku Boys, about three Tokyo women who live as men. Next, she made Rock Wives for Channel 4 about the wives and girlfriends of rock stars, followed by Divorce Iranian Style, set in a family law court in Tehran about women and divorce in Iran. She then made two short films for the Best Friends series on Channel 4: Steve & Dave – about two friends who work as a drag act and Rob & Chris about two homeless young men. Then Gaea Girls about a young girl’s struggle to become a professional wrestler. Runway is set in a refuge for girls in Tehran. Her film The Day I Will Never Forget, about young girls in Kenya challenging the tradition of female circumcision premiered domestically at Sundance in 2003. Her next film, Sisters in Law, set in Kumba, Cameroon, premiered and won two prizes at Cannes. After that, Hold Me Tight, Let Me Go was set in an Oxford school for disturbed children. The next film, Rough Aunties, about a group of brave women based in Durban, South Africa won the Best International Film Award at Sundance. Pink Saris set in Uttar Pradesh, Northern India followed. Her next film, Salma, was set in Tamil Nadu, India. Her new film, Dreamcatcher, will be released in January 2015.
In a House that Ceased to Be
Cıarín Scott is a multi-award-winning director whose career has encompassed documentaries, commercials and corporate films. These include the acclaimed documentaries Waiting for the Light (2008) and Michael Scott – A Changing Man (2006). She directed over 50 commercials, before taking a sabbatical to write and develop screenplays.
It Came From Connemara!!
In 2014 Brian produced and directed Return to Templremore for TG4 and BAI, a documentary following the lives of the first Templemore Garda recruits 50 years after they graduated. In 2013 he made Hollywood Rebels for TG4 and BAI. This hour-long documentary explored the lives of two Irish rebels who went on to become Hollywood stars, Arthur Shields and George Brent. In 2012 he wrote, produced and directed Déanta in Éirinn for TG4 & BAI. This four part series followed Manchán Magan as he attempted to survive on Irish-made goods alone. In 2011 he wrote, directed and produced the highly acclaimed documentary Ray McAnally – m’Athair for TG4. The documentary featured Aonghus McAnally exploring the life of his father Ray and was nominated for two IFTAs. In 2010 Brian wrote, produced and directed the highly acclaimed series Taoiseach for TV3 and BCI. This series explored the office of Taoiseach and the men who have held the position.
In 2009 he wrote, produced and directed the drama documentary series Scéalta ón Riocht for TG4. The previous year he produced the innovative live drama series Seomra a Sé for TG4 and BCI. In 2007 Brian produced and directed the acclaimed travel series Dáithí ar Route 66 for TG4. That same year he wrote, directed and produced Uachtaráin for TG4 and BCI. This 8-part series explored the Irish Presidency. Also in 2007, he wrote, produced and directed No Béarla for RTÉ following Manchán Magan as he attempted to travel throughout Ireland speaking only Irish.
Prior to that he won three IFTAs for producing the acclaimed travel series Amu Amigos for TG4. He has also produced, directed and written documentaries on Siobhan McKenna (TG4), Brendan Behan (TG4) and John Huston (TG4) as well as a music documentary series charting the history of rock music in Northern Ireland, Rock ‘n the North (UTV) and a hugely popular documentary for RTÉ on the showbands Good Night, Safe Home and God Bless.
Ai Weiwei- The Fake Case
Director Andreas Johnsen has a sharp eye and a big heart for sub cultures. He points his camera to the underground, looking at what moves and grooves at the verge of the norms of society and often also on the edge of the law. Since 2003 the director has looked behind and below, sometimes even into the soul of things. His previous work includes: Kidd Life, feature documentary, 2012; Another Kind of Paradise, 60 min., 2011; Murder, 51 min., 2009; Natasja, 54 min., 2008; Man Ooman (Man Woman), 56 min., 2008; Good Copy Bad Copy, 58 min., 2007; Curtain Raising, 58 min.,2006; Inside Outside, 57 min., 2005; Mr Catra The Faithful, 60 min., 2004; and Stocktown (9x30min), 2003
Des Doyle was born and raised in Dublin, Ireland. After graduating from the Dublin Institute Of Technology with a Diploma in Film Production he began his career as a camera assistant and over the last 15 years has worked on a diverse range of TV dramas, commercials, music videos and feature films, working with artists such as U2 and Sinead O’Connor as well acclaimed directors such as Jim Sheridan, Lenny Abrahamson and Barry Levinson. A lifelong passion for U.S. TV drama and the inner workings of the American television industry inspired the idea for his debut film as a director, a documentary feature exploring the world of U.S. TV head writer/creators, referred to within the industry as “Showrunners”, which was funded by the Irish Film Board and Kickstarter.
The IFI is supported by The Arts Council