The Alliance of Women Film Journalists presented two filmmaker panel discussions as part of this year’s Salem Film Fest Filmmaker Forum program. Featuring documentarians with films screening at the festival, the panels focused on the vital topics of how filmmakers build trust in their subjects and how they avoid changing their subjects’ developing stories. Read on…
- Building Trust in Documentary Filmmaking is a discussion about how filmmakers gain the trust of subjects who are in tenuous circumstances and, conversely, how they can trust their subjects to tell the truth. Filmmakers on the panel included Cozette Russell (director of Brookford Almanac), Jeremy Workman (director of Magical Universe) and Miho Yamamoto (producer of The Exhibition). The panel took place on Saturday, March 8 at Noon.
- Changing Reality is about how nonfiction filmmakers avoid altering the course of events and/or the outcome of the evolving story they’re documenting — even when they might be tempted to do so. And how they know when it’s time for them to disengage themselves from an ongoing story. Scheduled to appear are Suzan Beraza (director of Uranium Drive-In), Tracy Droz Tragos (co-director of Rich Hill), Michael Kleiman (director of Web) and Lukas Korver (director of The Medicine Game). The panel took place on Sunday, March 9 at Noon.
AWFJ President Jennifer Merin moderated both panels. Admission to both was free.
This is the third consecutive year of partnership between Salem Film Fest and AWFJ. Salem Film Fest is also one of the festivals at which AWFJ presents EDA Awards for Best Female-Directed Film. This year, ten films were nominated for the EDA Award.
Samantha Grant’s A Fragile Trust won the EDA Award for Best Female-Directed Film @ Salem Film Festival 2014, while a Special Mention EDA Award for Documentary Storytelling and Impact was presented to Deepti Kakkar and Farad Mustafa for Powerless.
This year, the AWFJ jurors Monika Bartyzel. Cynthia Fuchs, Sheila Roberts, Diana Saenger and Sara Vizcarrondo.