Open City Doc Fest launched it’s 2015 festival programme tonight, with founder Michael Stewart announcing the films will that will play across multiple London venues between the 16th to the 21st June. In the works are a wide range of contemporary, international documentaries as well as filmmaker Q&As, industry panels, workshops, live music, networking and parties. The Festival is one of several projects run by the UCL-based Open City Docs, which was established to nurture and celebrate documentary film through screenings and live events, training programmes and projects throughout the year.
The festival will kick off with a screening of Sam Klemke's Time Machine from director Matthew Bate (Shut Up Little Man! An Audio Misadventure), which is built from the footage and life story of the idiosyncratic Sam Klemke, who began obsessively filming and documenting his life on camera the same year the Voyager space craft launched into space in 1977. The footage shows 35 years in the life of Sam, as he grows from an optimistic teen to a self-important 20 year old, into an obese, self-loathing 30-something and onwards into his 50s, all while the Voyager space craft spins out into space.
The closing gala is The Closer We Get from directors Karen Guthrie and Nina Pope, which explores Karens own family story, which took an unusual turn following her mother’s stroke and revelations about her father.
In between will be various highlights, including a focus on China, a special Resident advisor music strand, a Croatian film strand, and various UK premieres including a showing of The Price We Pay from The Corporation co-writer and Surviving Progress co-director Harold Crooks, about the dirty history and reality of big business tax avoidance. The Dardennes Brothers will get a documentary retrospective showcasing their earlier work before they moved into feature filmmaking. There will also be a special preview of the forthcoming documentary The Best of Enemies, which looks at the intellectual battles in the media between US intellectual titans Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley Jnr. Of Men and War, looking at PTSD in US soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, comes hot from the 2014 Cannes festival.
The festival plays several new venues this year, including the new Deptford community cinema and the restored Regent Street Cinema. See here for venues, tickets and times.