• Year

Guevara Namer
Germany, Syria
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Module Guide
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Guevara is a co-founder of DOX BOX. Her position at DOX BOX from 2014 till 2017 was academy manager and community moderator, where she contributed in building the community and was furthermore involved in several productions of the academy’s educational materials. Prior to her involvement with DOX BOX, she used to run the documentary campus of the DOX BOX International Film Festival Syria and was production manager and line producer of several Syrian documentary films, such as Return to Homs (2013) and Silvered Water, Syria Self-Portrait (2014). In her own right she is a documentary filmmaker herself (Morning Fears, Night Chants, 2012). Guevara is a graduate of the Damascus Applied Arts Institute as a certified photographer and did Drama Studies at the Higher Institute Dramatic Arts in Damascus. Currently she is a freelance photographer and filmmaker based in Berlin.

Nabil Djedouani
Algeria
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Nabil Djedouani is a Franco-Algerian director, actor and film archivist. In 2012, after graduating with a degree in Algerian Film Studies, he founded “Les archives numériques du cinéma algérien” (the Digital Archives of Algerian Cinema). He is the author of two MA theses entitled Post-colonial Algerian cinema: Between standardization and a quest for authenticity and The enlightened cerement: Crisis of the representation and representation of the crisis in Algeria in the 1990s.

Raul Niño Zambrano
Netherlands
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 5: Mapping Arab Documentaries

Raul Niño Zambrano, currently based in the Netherlands, has been working in the Program Department of the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) since 2008. He is an expert in Latin American documentaries and shorts and has been invited to many festivals and events as a jury member and tutor. Raul is a curator of IDFA’s First Appearance Competition and Student Documentary Competition. He is also interested in data visualisation and multimodal metaphor.

Dorothee-Myriam Kellou
Algeria, France
Contributions:
Participant
Rough-cut Screenings

Dorothee-Myriam Kellou studied documentary filmmaking with Ateliers Varanin in Paris and is currently completing her first feature film, Algeria Out of Place. The film centres on Algerian memories of forced resettlement by the French military during the Algerian war of independence. It explores Dorothee-Myriam’s father’s oblivion and memory of this silenced history and was awarded the “Brouillon d’un rêve” prize at SCAM, first prize for historical film projects at Le rendez-vous de l’histoire de blois and first prize at the Cairo International Women’s Film Festival rough cut workshop. Dorothée-Myriam also works as a journalist. In June 2016, while working for the French newspaper Le Monde, she uncovered the scandal of the French company Lafarge’s indirect funding of the Islamic State during the war in Syria. Her work was awarded the TRACE International Prize for Investigative Reporting. Dorothee-Myriam graduated as a Fulbright student from the Master of Arts in Arab Studies at Georgetown University in Washington D.C, prior to which she studied Political Science in Lyon and Arabic in Cairo.

Nihal Zaghloul
Egypt, Germany
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 5: Mapping Arab Documentaries

Nihal Zaghloul is a research assistant and notetaker at Dox Box and part-time Facilitation Fellow at Soliya, where she assists in researching studies related to the Arab documentary industry. She also facilitates cross-cultural dialogue between participants from predominantly Muslim societies and the West. Prior to that, Nihal worked as a business development officer for the Imprint Movement, where she focused on networking to find the necessary financial resources for the movement to achieve its goals. Nihal has five years of experience in addressing women’s rights issues.

Paula Vaccaro
United Kingdom
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Paula Vaccaro is a British-Italian executive and creative producer and screenwriter based in the United Kingdom. Paula has over two decades of experience working in TV, radio, newspapers, magazines and cinema in Spanish- and English-speaking regions. In 2009, she founded Pinball London, a production company based in London that specialises in films with an author stamp for international audiences such as On the Milky Road (Venice Film Festival, 2016), directed by Emir Kusturica, with whom she worked with on the documentary Maradona (Cannes, 2008) and the collective film Words with Gods (Venice, 2014). Paula has worked alongside renowned filmmakers such as Sally Potter, Sara Driver, Jim Jarmusch, Guillermo Arriaga and a new generation of filmmakers including Aaron Brookner, Edoardo de Angelis and Victoria Solano. In the past decade, she has worked as an advisor on production, outreach, audience engagement and festival strategy for over 100 films. She has been involved with film festivals and events including Thessaloniki, GoodPitch, DocMontevideo, DocsSP, Sheffield DocFest, Jilhava Film Festival and Docs Buenos Aires, Trieste FF. She has served as an Emmy juror, an official juror at San Sebastian Film Festival and Focal Awards for Archive Excellency and is currently teaching at Kingston University.

Cara Mertes
USA
Contributions:
Keynote Speaker

Cara Mertes’ career focuses on supporting and connecting independent filmmakers and film communities globally as a funder, public television executive, independent executive producer/director, programmer, funder, curator and teacher. Currently Director of Ford Foundation’s JustFilms, she funds content, networks and leadership fostering independent film/digital storytelling. She has served as Director, Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program and Fund and Executive Producer of the POV documentary series on PBS, where she was awarded with multiple Emmy, George Foster Peabody, and duPont-Columbia awards. She has executive produced several Oscar-nominated films, including Street Fight, My Country My Country and The Betrayal (Nerakhoon) and led major Ford funding and support for Academy Award winner CITIZENFOUR. She served as executive director of American Documentary Inc., and has taught and written about the independent documentary movement. Mertes is a member of NATAS, WGA and AMPAS, a graduate of Vassar College, the Whitney Independent Study Program, and Harvard OPM Program as a Ford Fellow.

Jonas Sadik
Germany, Iraq
Contributions:
Travel& Logistics Assistant
aDC

Jonas Sadik is responsible for travel and logistics at DOX BOX e.V. In addition to his contribution to the arab.European Documentary Convention, he is currently studying political science at Free University Berlin. He also contributes as editor-at-large to the online music magazine Rap2Soul. Prior to his engagement with DOX BOX, Jonas completed a traineeship at the Delegation of the European Union to Malaysia and worked at a German school in Cairo. He speaks German, English, French and (Iraqi) Arabic.

Maya Szydłowska
Poland
Contributions:
Project Assistant
aDC

Maya Szydłowska is a lawyer by training, specialising in the international protection of human rights and international criminal law. Prior to joining aDC, she worked for several Polish and international NGOs, including the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights, the Gender Equality Observatory and the Coalition for the International Criminal Court office in Brussels. She is passionate about the power of documentary filmmaking and visual storytelling for human rights advocacy. Maya is a 2018 Humanity in Action Fellow. She speaks English and Polish and is conversational in German.

Elena Subira
Spain
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Elena Subira I Roca is the head of institutional relations, marketing, communications and fundraising at DocsBarcelona. Elena has been directing and managing projects of a cultural nature, coordinating multidisciplinary teams and focusing on public financing strategies for 15 years. Since joining DocsBarcelona in 2009, Elena has worked on reaching over 16,000 viewers, creating the editions of Medellín (Colombia) and Valparaíso (Chile), building a network of documentary premieres in more than 90 venues, creating the DocsBarcelona distribution brand with a catalogue of over 100 feature documentaries and organising the DocsBarcelona Professional Marketplace reference for Spanish and Latin American documentary communities. Elena holds a degree in humanities and journalism with a focus on communications, marketing and fundraising strategies.

Serra Ciliv
Turkey
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Serra Ciliv is the co-founder and director of !f Istanbul Independent Film Festival. In 2015, in partnership with Anadolu Kültür, !f Istanbul launched the New Film Fund, Turkey’s first independent film fund for documentaries focusing on human rights. !f and the New Film Fund went on to create !f Doc Lab, where documentary filmmakers from Turkey and the region come together to collaborate on projects and ideas in a safe and inspiring environment. Prior to her work in film, Serra worked for a human rights organisation in New York as well as in the publishing sector in Istanbul as editor of Cogito philosophy journal. She then joined forces with close friends to start an alternative arts and culture platform to bring together contemporary artists and musicians for exhibitions and other events in Istanbul and Cyprus. Serra studied Political Science and Third World Studies at Oberlin College and received her MA from the Department of History at Sabancı University.

Hala Galal
Egypt
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Hala is an Egyptian filmmaker. As such, she contributed to and co-founded ​several initiatives aimed at supporting independent and alternative cinema. She co-founded “SEMAT​ Production and Distribution​” which she has been managing since its inception. Hala was a jury member in numerous international, regional and local festivals, as well as head of the “Caravan of the Euro-Arab Cinema​ Festival”​ and the “Masry Asly” festival.

Klara Grunning
Sweden
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Emmy Award-winning Klara Grunning is a freelance consultant and international film, TV and cross media executive producer. She is currently the documentary film commissioner at the Swedish Film Institute and formerly the documentary feature and short film commissioning editor at the Royal Danish Film Institute. She is the chairwoman of the Board of Directors for the Why Project and previously served as vice president and international commissioning editor of KUDOS Family, a media co-production and distribution company based in Norway. Klara has been responsible for bringing international and domestic documentaries, series and dramas to the US. Klara’s background as an independent producer, director and cinematographer include Gumby Dharma, What Do You Believe? and Looking For Buddha. She has been invited to judge media funds, partake in film festival panels and juries including in BAVC, DocAgora/IDFA, HotDocs, Crossover Nordic/Nordic Panorama and the Emmys. Klara has been the consulting producer for international feature documentaries including The World Before Her, The Pirate Bay, The Sarnos, From Within, Without and the fiction film, The Road to Minnesota. Klara holds a BFA from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco in film, TV and media production.

Svetla Turnin
Canada
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Panelist
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Svetla Turnin is the co-founder, executive director and head of distribution at Cinema Politica, an exhibition and distribution network for political documentaries. In 2016, she launched CP Productions with filmmaker Amy Miller. The production house is currently producing three feature documentaries by emerging women directors. She is also currently overseeing the production of 15 short films as part of Cinema Politica’s “Documentary Futurism, a project funded by the Canada Council for the Arts and part of Eurodoc 2018. Svetla writes about documentary activism and women in documentary and festivals. She is the co-editor of the anthology Screening Truth to Power: A Reader on Documentary Activism (2014) and her latest publication is a chapter in Intellect’s “Activist Film Festivals” entitled The Revolution Will Not be Festivalized: Documentary Film Festivals and Activism. She has sat on juries and given workshops on the politics of festival programming, crowdfunding and impact producing at festivals and conferences around the world, including FNC, RIDM, Planet in Focus, Visible Evidence and DocuDays Ukraine. Since 2015, she has been programming the documentary competition at Sofia International Film Festival.

Michaela Pnacekova
Germany
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production

Michaela Pnacekova is a producer and interactive storyteller. She heads the Kloos & Co Medien documentary film production subsidiary in Leipzig, where she focuses on young talents, co-productions and new media. Michaela has worked for several film festivals, including the Czech queer film festival Mezipatra, Berlinale Panorama, European Film Market, FilmFestival Cottbus, Achtung Berlin and NISI MASA, European Network of Young Cinema. Michaela’s first feature length documentary co-production Border Cut (Igor Chojna), to be released in May 2018, won special mention at Bosch Stiftung East European Co-Production Prize 2014. Her first short film Empire premiered at the Montreal World Film Festival 2015. In October 2016, the short film Paper Bear that she produced at the Deutsche Film- und Fernsehenakademie in Berlin premiered on German public broadcaster RBB. In 2017, she co-created and produced her first interactive app, Pre-Crime Calculator, as a marketing tool for the launch of the documentary Pre-Crime. Her documentary project Waterproof (Daniela König) received the EWA Award for the best female-driven project in development at DOK Leipzig 2017. Michaela holds an MA in English and American Studies and Theatre Studies from Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic.

Zeynep Dışbudak
Germany, Turkey
Contributions:
Research Assistant
Module 5: Mapping Arab Documentaries

Zeynep Dışbudak is a research assistant for the Data Is Beautiful/Mapping Arab Documentary project at DOX BOX. She also contributes as a project assistant to bi’bak, an interdisciplinary project space that engages with questions of migration and mobility. Zeynep previously worked as a media assistant at the !f Istanbul Independent Film Festival. She holds BA degrees in economics and sociology from Bogazici University, Turkey and is finishing up her MA in social and cultural anthropology at the Free University of Berlin. Zeynep is fluent in Turkish, German and English and has basic conversational skills in Arabic and Italian.

Hania Mroué
Lebanon
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Hania Mroué is a Lebanese film programmer and distributor. She is the founder and director of Metropolis Cinema, the sole art house movie theatre in Lebanon. In 2010, Hania founded MC Distribution, a company dedicated to selling and distributing Arab and international independent titles in the MENA region. She is a founding member of the Beirut DC association to promote and support independent Arab films. For ten years, Hania was the Managing Director of Beirut DC’s Arab Film Festival “Ayam Beirut al Cinema’iya.” From 2010 to 2012, she was Chief Arab Programmer at the Doha Tribeca Film Festival. Hania served as a jury member at several prestigious film festivals, including Cannes’ Semaine de la Critique 2017, Berlinale’s First Feature Competition 2012, Adelaide International Film Festival and Malatya International Film Festival. Since 2013, she has also served as a jury member for the Robert Bosch Stiftung’s Arab Film Prize Award.

Samia Labidi
France, Tunisia
Contributions:
Notetaker
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Currently based in Paris, Samia Labidi, a French born Tunisian, is a Political Science graduate from The Sorbonne. She is one of the coordinators of Festival Ciné-Palestine (FCP) devoted since 2015 to showcase the diversity of the Palestinian cinematic landscape. She is also Head of Distribution of Momento!, a production and distribution company focused on independent filmmakers. Within Momento!, she is currently coordinating The Palestine Films Collection, a distribution, curating and programming platform dedicated to widen the exposure and circulation of Palestinian cinema and Palestine related films.

Ina Rossow
Germany
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Ina Rossow currently lives and works in Leipzig, Germany. Prior to joining d.net Sales/Deckert Distribution in 2002, Ma.ja.de in 2011 and Egoli Tossell Film from 2002 to 2011 as a festival manager for documentary and fiction films, she worked as a freelancer for museums and exhibitions. Ina has served as a jury member for several national and international film festivals, including DOK.fest Munich, Crossing Europe FF Linz and DocAviv Tel Aviv. She holds a degree in Cultural Sciences, Journalism and Ethnology from Leipzig University.

Monica Maurer
Italy
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Monica Maurer is a German filmmaker with over 40 years of experience. After concluding her studies in Germany, she worked as a journalist, television feature writer and civil rights activist. She has worked in the US, Latin America and Middle East. After running her own bookshop in Cologne, she moved to Beirut, where she cooperated with the Palestinian Cinema Institution and Information Department of the Palestine Red Crescent Society on many films, including Palestine Red Crescent (1978), The Fifth War (1980) and Palestine in Flames (1988). Monica contributed for years to the Third World Workshop at the Oberhausen Documentary and Short Film Festival and was an International Jury member in Leipzig, Munich, Bilbao, Paris (Cinema Arabe), Rome (Tek-Festival), Rome (Festival delle Terre), Santiago de Chile (Sanfic), Cracow (Short Film Festival) and others. Throughout the 90s, she cooperated with the International Documentary Film Festival of Leipzig and the International Docfilm Festival in Munich. In 1993, she co-founded the Arab Documentary Film Festival “AL ARD” in Cagliari. She is a member of the Board of the Archive of the Working Class and Democratic Movement (AAMOD) in Rome and is currently working on a film project entitled Shooting Revolution.  

Mohanad Yaqubi
Belgium, Palestine
Contributions:
Co-Curator, Facilitator of Expert Group
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Mohanad Yaqubi is a filmmaker, producer and co-founder of the Ramallah-based production house Idioms Film. Mohanad is also a co-founding member of the research and curatorial collective Subversive Films, which focuses on militant film practices. Most recently, Mohanad became a resident researcher at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts (KASK) in Gent, Belgium. Mohanad’s filmography as a producer includes the documentary features Infiltrators (2013) and Suspended Time (2013) and the narrative short Pink Bullet (2014). He has worked on several films as co-producer, including the narrative feature Habibi (2010), the short narrative Though I Know the River is Dry (2012) and the feature documentaries Ambulance (2016) and Ouroboros (2017). Mohanad’s first feature film, Off Frame AKA Revolution Until Victory (2016) made its premiere at TIFF, Berlinale, cinema du reel, Dubai IFF, and Yamagata, among many others around the world.

Saida Abdi
USA
Contributions:
Keynote Speaker

Saida Abdi is a licensed clinical social worker and the Associate Director of Community Programs at the Boston Children’s Hospital Center for Refugee Trauma and Resilience (CHCRTR). She has extensive experience with refugee and immigrant populations, with a focus on providing trauma-informed care to refugee and immigrant youth and families. She is an expert in patient/community engagement, cultural humility and the use of interpreters and cultural brokers to reduce health disparities and enhance refugee access to mental health services. In her current role as the Associate Director of Community Programs at CHCRTR, Ms. Abdi works with partners around community engagement and the integration of cultural and clinical methods to enhance community resilience and system responsiveness to the needs of vulnerable populations. Ms. Abdi is fluent in multiple languages and holds a master’s degree in Social Work from Boston University, a master’s degree in Communications from Carleton University, and is currently pursuing her PhD at Boston University.

Hicham Falah
France, Morocco
Contributions:
Conslutant, Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary, Rough-cut Screenings

Hicham is the Manager of FILMS DE PAPIER (filmmaker and producer) as well as Artistic Director at FIFFS. Furthermore, he acts as the Délégué Général at FIDADOC (International Film Festival of Agadir). Originally from Casablanca and France, Hicham studied cinematography at Sorbonne University’s Louis Lumière College in Paris.

Jowe Harfouche
Lebanon
Contributions:
Facilitator of Expert Group
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Jowe Harfouche is the Executive Director of the Network of Arab Alternative Screens (NAAS), a growing constellation of non-governmental cinema spaces presenting visionary film programmes that engage and challenge audiences across the Arab region. Based in Beirut, he is also a filmmaker. With Ginger Beirut, he produced feature films for Ghassan Salhab, Nadine Labaki, Simon El Haber, Vatché Boulghourjian, Rabih Mroué, Alia Farid and Mark Lewis, working in roles ranging from line producer and assistant director to post-producer and editor. As an independent filmmaker, he edited Akram Zaatari’s feature film 28 Nights and a Poem, directed music videos for Mashrou’ Leila and Aziza and developed his first feature documentary Making Sex within the framework of the Documentary Campus and Berlinale Talents. He has also directed viral video campaigns for local and regional NGOs. In addition to his work in cinema and film, he serves as President of Masrah Ensemble, a non-profit theatre organisation that aims to reconfigure audiences and encourage transcendent, riveting theatre. Jowe holds degrees in animation, film and television production from Notre Dame University (Lebanon) and Trebas (Montreal, Quebec).

Talal Al-Muhanna
Kuwait
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production

Talal Al-Muhanna was born in Kuwait and educated in England and the USA. Prior to making films, he worked in the field of performing arts in the USA, South Korea, Germany and Ireland – initially as a performer and later on as a producer. After undertaking a period of intensive film studies at the New School University in New York, he went on to earn a BA and MA in “Film, Music and Performing Arts; Moving Image Production” from Leeds Metropolitan University in the U.K. He also holds a Certificate in Fundraising from New York University and continues to produce performing arts projects.

Claas Danielsen
Germany
Contributions:
Moderator
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Claas Danielsen is a German filmmaker, producer, lecturer and festival director currently based in Leipzig. He has made seven documentaries, several of which did extensive festival tours, won international awards and were sold to European broadcasters. In 2016, Claas was appointed managing director of the MDM Mitteldeutsche Medienfoerderung, the regional film fund serving Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia. Claas Danielsen was a board member of the German documentary filmmakers’ association (AG DOK) and of the European Documentary Network EDN for years. From 2004 to 2014, he was the artistic and managing director of DOK Leipzig, the International Leipzig Festival for Documentary and Animated Films, which he developed into one of the leading international documentary festivals. In 1997, Claas became an assistant professor in the Documentary Department of the Munich Film Academy, where he built up a new chair for TV journalism. In 1999, Claas became head of studies at the Discovery Campus (now Documentary Campus). He is a member and advisor to the European Film Academy, board member of the Balkan Documentary Center and has served on many international festival juries and selection committees for various German film and media funds.

Andrea Kuhn
Germany
Contributions:
Moderator, Notetaker/ Co-facilitator
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Andrea has been the director of the Nuremberg Human Rights Film Festival since 2007. Prior to that she was the director of StummFilmMusikTage in Erlangen from 2000 to 2011 and a lecturer for Film Studies at Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nürnberg from 2000 to 2008.  She is an associate member of ANHAR: The Network for Arab Human Rights Films and serves on the board of Dox Box e.V.,. She is currently the chair of the Association of Bavarian Film Festivals, a member of the European Film Academy and a founding member and speaker of the section “Festivalarbeit” at ver.di (Germany’s United Services Trade Union) which aims to improve working conditions for freelancers and employees at film festivals.
Andrea Kuhn is also on the board of Stiftung medico international, an aid and human rights organization which focuses on health as a human right and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1999 for their International Campaign to Ban Landmines.

Soleil Gharbieh
Lebanon
Contributions:
Notetaker of Expert Group
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production

Soleil Gharbieh is the grants manager at AFAC. Prior to accepting this position, she spent six weeks in Goethe’s Kulturakademie and underwent a specialised training program to connect Arab cultural managers with the art scene in Berlin, Leipzig and Hamburg. Prior to her experience in Germany, Soleil lived in Egypt, where she was heavily involved in the local independent music scene while working at the Cairo Jazz Club Agency. From 2008 to 2014, Soleil worked as a catalogue manager and book buyer at CIEL, a book distribution company. She holds a BA in French Literature from the Lebanese University.

Mohamed Soueid
Lebanon
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Mohamed Soueid is a Lebanese writer, director and producer. Currently head of the Documentary Department at Al Arabiya News Channel, he has directed numerous Al Arabiya documentaries, including Hanging Dates Under Aleppo’s Citadel (2013), A Spell of Absence (2011), How Bitter My Sweet (2009), My Heart Beats Only For Her (2008) and The Sky Is Not Always Above (2007). He has also directed a number of other films, including Civil War (DV, 2002) and Nightfall (2000). Mohamed won the Best Documentary Director Prize at the Beirut International Film Festival in 2000 for his documentary Tango of Yearning (1998). In addition to his films, Mohamed has written three books: Postponed Cinema – Lebanese Films During the Civil War (Essay, Beirut, 1986), O Heart – A Film Autobiography On The Late Movie Theatres Of Old Beirut (Beirut, 1996) and Cabaret Souad (Novel, Beirut, 2004).

Stefan Kloos
Germany
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Stefan Kloos is the managing director of Rise and Shine World Sales, a leading international sales agent for documentaries. He also heads Rise and Shine Cinema, dedicated to the theatrical distribution of selected high-profile documentary films in German cinemas. Recent titles include: Raving Iran, My Stuff, Pre-Crime, Transit Havanna, Neuland and Alles Gut. Stefan heads Kloos&Co. Medien, one of the most active German production companies for international cinema and TV co-productions with offices in Berlin, Leipzig and Hamburg. He is a Grimme Award and Cinema Eye Honors winner, a Film Independent Spirit nominee and a member of the German and European Film Academy. His coproduction Last Men in Aleppo was recently nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary.

Azza Chaabouni
Tunisia
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Panelist
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production

Azza Chaabouni is a Tunisian lecturer, researcher, editor and festival curator.

Among the films she edited is multi-award winning feature Hedi by Mohamed Ben Attia (2016). Since 2014 Azza is the head of TAKMIL, a post-production workshop for African and Arab feature films and creative documentaries taking place annually in the framework of of “Carthage Pro”, the professional platform of Carthage Film Festival (JCC). In addition she was appointed head of of Ciné Par’Court in 2018, a project that accompanies seven groups of young Tunisian filmmakers in the realisation of their short films of all genres.

Azza studied cinema in Cinecittà-Rome. She is based in Tunis where she teaches cinema at the Higher Institute of Humanities while pursuing her PhD.

Lina Soualem
Algeria, France, Palestine
Contributions:
Participant
Rough-cut Screenings

Lina Soualem is a French-Palestinian-Algerian filmmaker and actress based in Paris. After studying History and political science at La Sorbonne University in Paris, she worked in journalism and as a programmer in film festivals, looking to combine her interest in cinema with the study of contemporary Arab societies. After working as a programmer at the International Human Rights Film Festival in Buenos Aires, Argentina for two years, she moved back to Paris. She acted in two feature films and currently works on film and documentary projects as an author and assistant director. Their Algeria is her first feature documentary.

Tereza Šimíková
Czech Republic
Contributions:
Panelist

Tereza is a head of industry of East Doc Platform, the largest co-production market and pitching forum focused on the Central and Eastern European region, which takes place every March in Prague. After graduating with a degree in documentary filmmaking from FAMU, Prague in 2009, she directed short documentaries including the award winning Double Life of Saint Vit. 2012-16 She was Program Manager of the international rough-cut workshop dok.incubator and served as the program director of its local workshops (DOK.Restart in Poland, developed in cooperation with Wajda School and Krakow IFF, DOK.SK in Slovakia and dok.elevator for Nordic producers). She serves on a number of selection committees, including the programming team of Karlovy Vary IFF, and the IDFA. From the position of the International Consultant, Tereza tailors the international strategy for the grantees of Chicken and Egg Pictures, a US based international fund and training for female documentary filmmakers.

Iris Frauender
Austria
Contributions:
Moderator, Notetaker
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Iris Fraueneder is a film scholar based at the University of Zurich, where she is currently working as a research assistant with the SNSF-project, “Contested Amnesia and Dissonant Narratives in the Global South: Post-conflict in Literature, Art, and Emergent Archives.” Her PhD Project, “Absent Images,” deals with the unavailability of audiovisual heritage in the Middle East and investigates filmic, curatorial and institutional strategies that confront this absence. Since 2013, she has been working at the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for History and Society in Vienna and the Department of Theatre, Film and Media Studies at the University of Vienna, where she also teaches. Iris graduated from the University of Vienna in 2015 with a degree in Theatre, Film and Media Studies and Philosophy. Her thesis focused on the transformations of Masao Adachi’s militant cinema-aesthetics as reflected by Eric Baudelaire’s essayistic documentary film, The Anabasis (2011). She is an active film curator and co-founder of the curating collective Diskollektiv.

Anna Bohn
Germany
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Anna Bohn, Ph. D. is a film historian and librarian. She is the head of the film library at the Berlin Central and Regional Library (ZLB Berlin) and a member of the Audiovisual and Multimedia Section of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA). She has previously worked on film restoration projects (Battleship Potemkin, Metropolis DVD Study Edition) and has published on the safeguarding of film as cultural heritage (Denkmal Film, 2013). Recent publications focus on access to films in libraries, video streaming and moving image metadata.

Mikael Opstrup
Denmark
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Moderator
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production

Mikael is the Head of studies at European Documentary Network and film consultant. He has been a dedicated documentarist since his first 8mm piece in 1977. In the 1980s, Mikael worked in distribution and theatrical release for documentaries and has worked as a documentary producer since the 1990s. He was Production Adviser at The Danish Film Institute from 1998-2002, and from 2002 – 2008, he was co-owner of Final Cut Productions in Copenhagen.

Leïla Beratto
Algeria, France
Contributions:
Participant
Rough-cut Screenings

Leïla Beratto is a correspondent for Radio France International (RFI). She has been based in Algiers since 2012. In 2015, in collaboration with Photographer Camille Millerand, she founded the project “Terminus Algeria,” which aims to show the daily lives of Sub-Saharan immigrants in Algeria and the effect of their presence on Algerian society. In 2017, Leïla contributed to the creation of 15-38 Mediterranée, a website focused on news from the Mediterranean. Deruisha is her first documentary.

Rima Mismar
Lebanon
Contributions:
Co-organizer, Moderator
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Rima Mismar was appointed Executive Director of AFAC in 2016 building on her extensive experience within AFAC as Deputy Director. Rima Mismar completed her studies in Communication Arts (Radio/TV/Film emphasis) at the Lebanese American University (LAU) in Beirut in 1998. Prior graduation, she began writing for local newspapers and cultural supplements, focusing on cinema and pursuing her professional career as a film critic as of 1999. She had participated in several festivals as jury member or as a member of the selection committee, contributed to serious critical writings on Arab cinema, moderated panels and wrote for several regional media. She worked briefly in television, writing and producing several episodes of “The Arabic Lens” (Al Adasa Al Arabiya), a series on Arab cinema produced and broadcasted by Al-Jazeera channel between 2005 and 2008. She also wrote and researched a number of feature documentaries produced by and broadcasted on Al-Arabiya channel. Rima has joined the Arab Fund for Arts and Culture (AFAC) in June 2011 as the Film Programs Manager and in 2015 was appointed Deputy Director.

Rasha Salti
France, Lebanon
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Rasha Salti is an independent film and visual arts curator and writer, working and living between Beirut and Berlin. At present, she is the commissioning editor for La Lucarne, an experimental documentary programme for Arté France. Salti collaborates with different festivals as a programme consultant, including the Abu Dhabi International Film Festival (2009-2010), and the Toronto International Film Festival (2011-2015). She has also curated film programmes for the Musée Jeu de Paume (2012, 2013 and 2015) in Paris, and the Tate Modern in London (2011), among many others.

Diana El Jeiroudi
Germany, Syria
Contributions:
Co-organizer, Facilitator of Expert Group, Moderator
Module 5: Mapping Arab Documentaries

Diana is a co-founder of DOX BOX e.V. Since the establishment of the association, she has been responsible for setting up its structures, allocating the resources, leading the team, setting up collaborations, and designing programs. From 2014 until 2016 Diana was co-chair of the board of DOX BOX. Diana has over 15 years of experience in documentary filmmaking as a director and producer of award-winning documentaries and as a co-founder of the production company Proaction Film and the documentary film festival DOX BOX in Syria. Diana holds a bachelor’s degree in Arts and Humanities from the University of Damascus. She is fluent in Arabic and English and has intermediate German skills.

Raed Rafei
Lebanon
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Raed Rafei is a Lebanese filmmaker, writer and multimedia journalist. For over ten years, he has been working as a reporter for national and international publications covering political, social and economic issues in the Middle East. He has also worked as a researcher, producer and director on many TV news reports and documentaries for channels including Al-Jazeera, CNN and ARTE. Since 2011, Rafei has been making independent hybrid films. He made two feature films: 74 (The Reconstitution of a Struggle) (2012), co-directed by Rania Rafei, and Here I am… Here you are (2016), as well as two short films: Prologue (2011) and Salam (2017). His films have screened at international film festivals and received several prizes.

Dima al-Joundi
Lebanon
Contributions:
Moderator, Module Consultant
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Dima al-Joundi is a film expert from Lebanon. Most recently, she worked as the national expert for the EU project MedFilm4all “Voices from Arab Women Filmmakers” in Tunis. She also worked as the director of artistic committee for film selection for the EU project Meffilm4all. Dima has produced over eight documentaries in the MEA and for the Al-Jazeera Doc channel. In 2014, she was the producer and distributor for the feature documentary A Long Breath by Remi Itani. From 2013 to 2014, she worked as the world sales agent and funder for the Syrian documentary The Immortal Sergeant by Ziad Kalthoum – the official selection at Locarno Film Festival (2014). In 2009, she was the executive producer and international co-production consultant for the Egyptian feature film El-Shooq (Khaled EL-Hagar) for Arabica Movies. In 2008, she was the executive producer for the feature film Hadewijch (Bruno Dumont) for his shooting in Lebanon on behalf of 3B production. In 2005, she co-produced and directed “Maid for sale”, which tells the story of three migrant workers from Sri Lanka and received several international awards. Since 2006, Dima has been the vice president of APIMED in Barcelona and established the Medimed Doc Market in Spain. She served as a jury member for the Intergovernmental Francophone Agency. Dima studied Script and Film Editing at the Cinema Institute in Brussels (INSAS).

 

 

Laila Hourani
Egypt
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Laila works from the Ford Foundation’s Cairo office as Program Officer Arts, Culture and Media. Her grant making focusses on supporting Arab institutions and networks that enhance independent creative expression, storytelling, artistic production and distribution in the MENA region.  Her grantmaking also supports the mobility of individual Arab artists, film makers and cultural producers to enhance their learning and development. In recent years, her grantmaking has included support to seeding and strengthening civil society organizations engaged in sustaining the artistic productivity and cultural vitality of Syrians, memorializing the Syrian conflict and providing cultural and art education services to Syrian refugee communities.  Before assuming the role of program officer in 2013, Laila worked with the Ford Foundation as a consultant. Previously, she led the development of strategy for the British Council’s arts and culture work in the Near East and North Africa out of Syria, enabling cultural exchange between Arab and UK artists in a challenging social and political climate. Over her nearly fourteen years with the British Council, Laila initiated, designed, and delivered projects in performing arts, new writing, translation, creative economy, and cultural leadership.  
From 2005 to 2011, Laila sat on the artistic board of Cultural Mawred (Al Mawred Al Thaqafy), one of the leading non-governmental cultural organizations servicing the Arab region. She has also been a board and jury member for other key regional organizations, among them Ettijahat- Independent Culture, the Anna Lindh Foundation’s Citizens for Dialogue Program, and the Arab Fund for Arts and Culture (AFAC). Earlier, she worked as a journalist and with UNICEF Syria. Laila published her debut novel, Baoh at the acclaimed Beirut based Al Adab in 2009.  Laila studied Russian language and specialized in TV Journalism at Moscow State University between 1988-1994.

Marc Mouarkech
Lebanon
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Marc Mouarkech is the managing director of the Arab Image Foundation in Beirut, Lebanon.

From 2010 to 2017, he worked at Galerie Tanit, Beirut/Munich and served as director of the Beirut branch in 2012. From 2014 to 2015, Marc organised and co-curated several exhibitions in Beirut. In October 2015, he co-founded a collective of eight curators that adopted the name “MADRASSA” (the Arabic word for school). MADRASSA focuses on institutional and collective practices in the region. Marc holds a master’s degree in Curatorial Studies and Art Criticism from Saint Joseph University, Beirut and a bachelor’s degree in Multimedia and Visual Arts from the Holy Spirit University, Kaslik in Lebanon.

Olivier Hadouchi
France
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Olivier Hadouchi is a film historian, researcher and independent film curator based in Paris. He completed his PhD in Cinema Studies with a concentration on Tricontinental, International Solidarity & Struggles of the South at Université Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris 3. Olivier was a documentary jury member for the Cultural Resistance Film Festival in Beirut and Tripoli in 2013 and the International Film Festival of Algiers in 2016. He is a member of World Cinema/CNC, Villa Kujoyama and Région Réunion. Olivier recently published a booklet entitled Archives & Images of Solidarity with Algerian Independence (MoCab/Museum of Modern Art, Belgrade, 2016) and texts in various publications, including Third Text, La Furia Umana, CinémAction, Something We Africans Got and more. He has given lectures, film presentations, roundtable discussions and talks in museums, art centres and film festivals. Olivier has curated film programmes for Museum Reina Sofia (Madrid), Galeria Zé dos Bois (Lisbon), La Colonie/Le BAL and Bétonsalon (Paris), and was part of the selection committee for PCMMO, St. Denis, 2014 and 2015. Most recently, Olivier was part of the “Colloque International d’Alger. La mémoire des films” in Algiers 2017.

Mélanie Simon-Franza
France
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Mélanie Simon-Franza is a distributor for Juste Doc, which has been distributing documentaries in France for ten years. In January 2018, Juste Doc distributed Taste of Cement, a Lebanese-Syrian documentary by Ziad Kalthoum. The Juste Doc team specialises in distributing documentaries throughout France and is focused primarily on films that question the world, education and humanity. Mélanie Simon-Franza is also a journalist with a focus on cinema.

Bruni Burres
USA
Contributions:
Conslutant, Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary, Rough-cut Screenings

For over 25 years, Bruni Burres has been a passionate leader with a proven track record developing and executing innovative projects at the intersection of arts, culture and human rights/social justice. She is a Senior Consultant for Sundance Institute’s Documentary Film Program, strategizing and deepening its international work with individual artists and organizations. She is a mentor and partner with the Greenhouse Documentary Training program for emerging Middle East and North African filmmakers, an advisor with Doc Society’s Good Pitch, which develops strategic and effective distribution campaigns for extraordinary films. From 1991 to 2008 Bruni was the director of the Human Rights Watch Film Festival. Bruni is the co-writer and associate producer of Beyond My Grandfather Allende, which won best documentary at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival, and co-writer and producer of Whose Country? by Mohamed Siam, which had its USA premiere at the 2016 New York Film Festival.

Jalal Maghout
Germany, Syria
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Jalal Maghout is an independent filmmaker from Syria. He is currently working on his master’s degree in Film at Film University Babelsberg as well as on a number of projects. Jalal has produced and directed several short animated films that were screened at festivals around the world, including his most recent animated documentary Suleima. Suleima has been selected for Dok-Leipzig, Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Film and ANNECY International Animation Film Festival. Jalal has also served as a jury member at international film festivals including Stuttgart and Annecy. In addition to film, Jalal has experience with music videos, caricatures, comics and painting. Prior to moving to Berlin in 2013, he worked as a teacher at Damascus University. Jalal holds a bachelor’s degree in Visual Communication from Damascus University

Orwa Nyrabia
Germany, Syria
Contributions:
Moderator, Panelist
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production, Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Orwa is the artistic director of the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA). He is a highly-acclaimed independent documentary film producer, who has earned numerous awards and screened projects in major international film festivals and on television channels around the world. Next to his role at IDFA Orwa manages an independent production company in Berlin where he focuses on documentary films with sociopolitical relevance.  Orwa is a member of the Academy for Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, the Deutsche Filmakademie, the International Documentary Association and the European Documentary Network. Orwa holds a degree in Acting from the Higher Institute of Dramatic Arts in Damascus, Syria.

Amine Hattou
Algeria
Contributions:
Consultant, Panelist
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production, Rough-cut Screenings

Amine Hattou is an Algerian filmmaker whose first feature documentary Janitou is scheduled for late 2017. In 2012, Amine joined the Project’heurts Association and in 2015, he founded the “Bejaia Film Lab,” a film platform for filmmakers and producers from the Maghreb to strengthen cinematographic production and support the film industry in the region. In 2009, Amine was selected to take part in the “La Fémis” summer university in Paris, France, where he directed his first short documentary Two for Tango. In 2011, Amine directed Down to Earth, which was selected for screening at various festivals around the world. Amine holds a degree from the Journalism Institute of Algiers.

Michelle Balon
USA
Contributions:
Volunteer
aDC

Michelle Balon is an Arab world specialist that recently relocated to Berlin. She is a member of the
aDC’18 team and works for the German government- and EU-funded Nexus Resource Platform.
Fluent in English, Arabic and Russian, she uses her language skills to facilitate cooperation
between the Arab world and the U.S/Europe through coordination and translation in the fields of
human rights, development, legislation, youth employment and environmental sustainability. She
is a graduate of the Harvard-run CASA Fellowship in Amman, Jordan, where she worked for years
as an interpreter/translator with international journalists, private sector companies, research
institutions, governmental and non-governmental organisations. Michelle graduated summa cum
laude with a BA in Arab Studies and Human Rights from the CUNY Baccalaureate for Unique and
Interdisciplinary Studies at the City University of New York. She is currently learning German.

​Isabel Arrate Fernandez
Netherlands
Contributions:
Moderator, Panelist
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production, Module 4: Distribution in Challenging Times

Isabel has been the manager of the IDFA Bertha Fund since 2002 where she has participated in numerous juries and works regularly as a consultant for documentary projects. In the past 15 years, the fund has developed into an internationally renowned institution with a broad network supporting over 500 documentary projects and film organizations in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Latin America.

Brigid O’Shea
Germany
Contributions:
Facilitator of Expert Group, Moderator
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Brigid O’Shea is an Australian native who has worked for European film festivals and documentary organisations since 2008. Holding a Bachelor of Fine Arts obtained in Melbourne and Berlin, she started as an intern at the Berlinale Talent Campus. She worked for various Berlinale departments as a freelancer until 2014, including the EFM and also Co-Production Market, until taking a more focused approach on creative documentary. This came from coordinating the DOK Industry Programme from 2009-2015, which allowed her to also freelance for the Institute of Documentary Film in Prague, for Documentary Campus Masterschool, and  Berlin-based production companies. She has collected many professional experiences across diverse audiovisual fields as a freelancer before being appointed Head of DOK Industry Programme in January 2015. She regularly tutors on topics like European co-financing, cultural management and festival strategies in places like North America and East Europe.

Yulia Serdyukova
Ukraine
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Yulia Serdyukova is a documentary film producer and scriptwriter, photographer and queer/feminist activist from the Ukraine. She has produced three feature length documentaries and several short documentaries. She runs an independent production company called Honest Fish Documentary Stories that focuses on producing creative documentaries with a strong author’s point of view and critical approach to dominant discourses.  

Jihan El-Tahri
Egypt
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group, Panelist
Module 1: Share/Save: the heritage of Arab Documentary

Having started her career as a foreign correspondent covering Middle East Politics, since 1990, Jihan has directed and produced documentaries for BBC, PBS, Arte and other international broadcasters. Her most recent documentary “Nasser” was part of the official selection at Toronto International Festival 2017. Jihan has produced and directed the acclaimed documentaries “Behind the Rainbow”, “ Cuba, an African Odyssey”, and Emmy-nominated “House of Saud”. She is a member of the Academy (AMPAS) documentary section, and is engaged in various associations and institutions working with African cinema.

Emma Davie
Scotland
Contributions:
Consultant
Rough-cut Screenings

Emma is a filmmaker and consultant at the Scottish Documentary Institute. She has won many awards, including three Scotland BAFT as in 2013. She has been making documentaries for fifteen years: What Age Can You Start Being An Artist? for Channel4 (2004, nominated for a Grierson); Gigha: Buying Our Island (2002, a one-hour film for BBC/Scottish Screen); and Flight (2000, a BBC/Canadian co- production). With a background in experimental theatre and performance, Emma ran her own company called Clanjamfrie which did large-scale site-specific performances that combined film and live performance.

Nada Riyadh
Egypt
Contributions:
Member of Expert Group
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Nada Riyadh is a Cairo-based documentary filmmaker. Her latest short film Virtual (2014), produced by MIF (Youssef Chahine and co.), was screened in various international film festivals and venues in Africa, Asia and Europe. After beginning her career as an editor, Nada has worked as a producer and director for several fiction and documentary films. She also works as a cultural manager, curating and implementing cross-disciplinary art programs.

Cecilia Lidin
Denmark
Contributions:
Facilitator of Expert Group, Panelist
Module 2: Ethics of Co-Production

Cecilia Lidin is a documentary film expert with over 20 years of experience in the development and financing of documentaries internationally. She is currently the Documentary Film Commissioner at the Danish Film Institute, prior to which she held the position of Documentary Film Commissioner at the Swedish Film Institute. From 2009 to 2011, Cecilia was the Head of the European Documentary Network (EDN), where she had worked for over ten years as an organiser, tutor and moderator. Some of the events she worked on include Nordisk Forum, Twelve for the Future, Docs Barcelona, Zagreb Dox Pro, Pitching du Reel and Pre-Pitch Workshop IDFA Forum. She also served as the artistic director of the Odense International Film Festival and worked as a consultant to the West Danish Film Fund. Cecilia Lidin holds a degree in film and wrote her final thesis on the ethical challenges of documentary filmmaking at the University of Copenhagen.

Marion Schmidt
Germany
Contributions:
Manager of aDC

Marion is the Events & Award Manager of DOX BOX and manager of the Documentary Convention. She also is the project manager of the organisation’s online portal, and one of the co-founders of the association. Previously she acted as the administrative head of the organisation.

An experienced cultural project manager, Marion has worked in various areas across Europe and the Middle East at institutions such as the Goethe-Institut, Cairo, European Film Market, Berlin and Social Enterprise UK, London. Next to her engagement with DOX BOX Marion does cultural project management in Berlin and pro-bono consultancies for individuals and small initiatives upon request. ​Marion holds a Master’s degree in Arts Administration & Cultural Policy from the University of London, UK.

Rebecca Podlech
Germany
Contributions:
Panelist
Module 3: Diversity in Documentary

Rebecca Podlech is currently based in Berlin and works for various film festivals as an editor and programmer. She also organises exhibitions and coordinates the goEast project OPPOSE OTHERING!, prior to which she worked at law firms, in the parliament, at a university and as a freelance translator. Rebecca studied translation, Slavic literature, film, and history in Munich, Germany and Prague. Her master’s thesis examined women filmmakers in Socialist Czechoslovakia and the subversiveness from within an oppressive patriarchal system. Her main areas of interest are performatism, strategies of opposition, resistance in the arts, and transgenerational legacies in Central and Eastern Europe.