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10 Years of Discovering the Best Documentaries for You


Christian Frei



Christian Frei was born in 1959, in Schönenwerd, Switzerland. He studied Visual Media at the Department of Journalism and Communication at Fribourg University. He shot his first documentary in 1981, and has been working as an independent filmmaker and producer since 1984. He works regularly for Swiss National Television SF DRS. In 1997, he shot his first feature length documentary, Ricardo, Miriam y Fidel, the tale of a Cuban family torn between loyalty to the revolutionary ideals and the desire to emigrate to the United States. In 2001, his War Photographer followed photojournalist James Nachtwey during his various missions. The film received an Academy Award Nomination for Best Documentary Feature and won twelve International Filmfestivals. The Giant Buddhas, his third documentary feature, wins the 2005 Silver Dove at the Leipzig Film Festival and enters competition at the renowned film festivals of Sundance and Toronto. In 2009, his newest doumentary feature Space Tourists is invited again to numerous international film festival and enters competition in Amsterdam and Sundance, where he is the first Swiss film to win the World Cinema Directing Award.
Christian Frei is an associate lecturer on Reflection Competence at the University of St. Gallen. In 2006 - 2009 he was president of the Documentary Film Commission of the Swiss Ministry of Culture. Since August 2010 he is President of the Swiss Film Academy. He lives and works in Zurich.

Ricardo, Miriam y Fidel (Switzerland, 1997)
War Photographer (96´, Switzerland, 2001)
The Giant Buddhas (95´, Switzerland, 2005)
Space Tourists (98´, Switzerland, 2009)
Sleepless in New York (90', CH/USA, 2013)


Giant Buddhas

Giant Buddhas (Orig.) / 2005 / Switzerland / 95 min

Conjuring the past, sifting the present, Christian Frei (Oscar Nomination for WAR PHOTOGRAPHER) is seeking the elusive, the poetic and the profound in his cinematic journey to THE GIANT BUDDHAS



Space Tourists

SPACE TOURISTS (Orig.) / Switzerland / 95 min

In his most recent work, Christian Frei turns to an age-old dream of man: to leave our planet as a «normal person» and travel into outer space.



War Photographer

War Photographer (Orig.) / 2001 / Switzerland / 96 min

In one of the world's countless crisis areas, surrounded by suffering, death, violence and chaos, photographer James Nachtwey searches for the picture he thinks he can publish.



20th Jihlava IDFF is worth visiting

20th Jihlava IDFF is worth visiting

From October 25 to 30, the 20th edition of the largest celebration of documentary film in Central and Eastern Europe is held in Jihlava, Czech Republic. Until November 6, the festival continues online at DAFilms.com.

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- 24.10.2016 -

The festival of German language films is drawing near. Don’t miss it!

The festival of German language films is drawing near. Don’t miss it!

If only because Das Filmfest has prepared a selection of the most interesting films from the current production of Germany, Austria and Switzerland. From October 19 to 23, Prague’s viewers can visit Lucerna and Atlas cinemas and choose among almost 40 films, ranging from historical films and psychological drama through genre and art films to crazy comedies.

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- 10.10.2016 -

Jihlava, Or 20 Years of Documentary in Bohemia

Jihlava, Or 20 Years of Documentary in Bohemia

From October 25 to 30, Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival will see its 20th anniversary edition. Look forward to the opulent programme in eight screening halls!

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- 3.10.2016 -

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