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Leonard Helmrich

Leonard Retel Helmrich

Netherlands / Website


Leonard Retel Helmrich is a Dutch filmmaker who worked as a drama director and cameraman in the Netherlands before going to Indonesia to make a series of documentaries that have won awards world wide. His most famous film Shape Of The Moon won Best Documentary in the World Docs Competition at Sundance 2005 as well as at the International Documentary Film festival Amsterdam (IDFA) in 2004. Leonard developed a theoretical perspective for his work as well as a practical technique for an approach that he calls 'single shot cinema', involving long takes with a constantly moving camera. He has also designed a special camera mount that allows extraordinary stability and maneuverability in shooting.
Having spent years designing this technique he now also runs workshops for broadcasters and with filmmakers to share his skills, most recently in Amsterdam, Belgium, Kansas City USA, South Africa, Germany, Indonesia and Sydney Australia. His workshop program is designed for 15 participants and the workshop will run for 3 or 4 days. The workshop is for experienced filmmakers, especially directors who do their own shooting or DOP's planning to move into directing.


Het Phoenix mysterie (93´, Netherlands, 1990)
Moving Objects (50´, Netherlands, 1991)
Jemand auf der Treppe (50´, Netherlands, 1994)
The Eye of the Day/ De stand van de zon (94´, Netherlands, 2001)
Flight from Heaven (50´, Netherlands, 2003)
Stand van de maan/ Shape of the Moon (92´, Netherlands, 2004)
Promised Paradise (52´, Netherlands/Indonesia, 2006)
Stand van de Sterren/ Position Among the Stars (115´, Netherlands/Indonesia, 2010)
Hollandse Nieuwe/Raw Herring (90', Netherlands, 2013)


Haiku - Leonard Retel Helmrich

Haiku - Leonard Retel Helmrich (Orig.) / Indonesia / 1 min


Helmrich 2

Haiku - Leonard Retel Helmrich 2

Haiku - Leonard Retel Helmrich 2 (Orig.) / Indonesia / 1 min



Position among the stars

Position among the stars (Orig.) / 2010 / Netherlands / 100 min

For 12 years, filmmaker Leonard Retel Helmrich followed an Indonesian family from the slums of Jakarta...



Shape of the Moon

Shape of the Moon (Orig.) / 2004 / Netherlands / 92 min

Indonesia is the fourth biggest nation in the world, and the country with the largest Muslim community on the globe.



The Eye Of The Day

The Eye Of The Day (Orig.) / 2001 / Indonesia, Netherlands / 92 min

In 1998 a deep political and economic crisis forced President Suharto to resign after 32 years in power...



A Showcase of Asian Documentary Film Jewels? TIDF!

A Showcase of Asian Documentary Film Jewels? TIDF!

The interest in all things Asian is growing faster than capital markets in the global world. That goes for documentary films as well. The contemporary production of Asian documentary filmmakers is regularly presented by Taiwan International Documentary Festival.

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- 12.9.2016 -

Gulîstan, Land of Roses Wins Prestigious Doc Alliance Selection Award at Locarno IFF

Gulîstan, Land of Roses Wins Prestigious Doc Alliance Selection Award at Locarno IFF

On Sunday, August 7, young director Zaynê Akyol became the 9th winner of the unique Doc Alliance Selection Award that is awarded since 2008 by the international Doc Alliance platform. The Kurdish director based in Canada received the award during an award ceremony at Locarno IFF. Along with the award, the filmmaker also received financial support of 5.000 euro for her future film.

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- 8.8.2016 -

Doc Alliance Selection Award 2016: Fresh Documentary Talents at the Upcoming Ninth DAS Awards

Doc Alliance Selection Award 2016: Fresh Documentary Talents at the Upcoming Ninth DAS Awards

Ever since 2008, Doc Alliance has been organising an international award intended especially for first-time directors. The Doc Alliance Selection Award helps up-and-coming filmmaking talents to put their name on the documentary map, providing a prize of EUR 5,000 to support their future projects. In 2016, Doc Alliance again nominated 7 outstanding films that will be vying for the 9th annual Doc Alliance Selection Award. The name of the winning title will be announced on August 7, 2016 during an official ceremony at the Locarno International Film Festival.

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- 13.6.2016 -

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