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- 13.4.2016 17:21 -

International My Street Films project launches its third edition


The My Street Films competition, which invites the public to make their own short films from their surroundings, launches its third edition in the streets of Central Europe. The project originally comes from London where it mapped the city on the Thames through film stories about the streets and their inhabitants. In collaboration with DAFilms.com, the film map has expanded to the Czech Republic and from there to Slovakia, Poland and Hungary.

The My Street Films project was founded by Michael Stewart, director of Open City Documentary Festival, in London in 2011. "My Street is a kind of citizen journalism. It is all about exploring the boundaries of documentary, which are shifting all the time," explains the founder of the project. The Czech version of My Street Films, initiated by Diana Tabakov from DAFilms.com, enriched the film map with a collaboration with professional documentarists who help beginning filmmakers with translating written concepts into the film language. In collaboration with Central European partners, the online film map expanded to other countries in the region in the past year and once it will be hopefully full of short films from Aš to Michalovce, from Gdansk to Szeged. In Poland, the project is secured by the Krakow Film Foundation, the main organizer of Krakow Film Festival, for a second year. The Slovak collaboration is held under the baton of A4 – Associations for Contemporary Culture in Bratislava this year while the Hungarian one is organized by the Green Spider Foundation which helps non-profit organizations with media communication.

In the Czech Republic, My Street Films announces a competition for the best film concepts whose winners get a chance to consult their film with professional documentarists. This year, these will include renowned Czech documentarists who are also represented at DAFilms.com. One of the filmmakers to offer their experience and comments is documentarist Erika Hníková whose graduation film The Beauty Exchange received the Audience Award at Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival in 2004. You can watch her other films I Guess We’ll Meet at the Eurocamp and Matchmaking Mayor at DAFilms.com.

Our tutors further include director, documentarist, film lecturer and script editor Martin Mareček whose graduation film Dust Games (2001) became the Best Czech Documentary at Jihlava IDFF, where it also received the Audience Award, and scored at international festivals as well. His next film The Source (2005) dealing with oil extraction in Azerbaijan received over twenty international awards and serves as documentary samizdat in the Caspian region. AutoMat (2009) was voted the Documentary of the Decade in an online vote of the Czech Television and Jihlava IDFF and competed at Japan’s prestigious Yamagata IDFF. Last but not least, his latest film – Solar Eclipse (2011) – became the most successful Czech documentary film of 2011. It won three awards at Jihlava IDFF, received the Czech Film Critics Award, the Czech Lion Award, the Trilobit FITES Award as well as the Association of Czech Film Clubs Award.

One of the winning concepts will be consulted by Martin Blažíček who deals with film, video, live image and interactive projects. Since 2000, he has worked with image created live by means of film and video projection. His films and live performances were presented at numerous festivals and galleries in the Czech Republic and abroad, for instance at Galerie Rudolfinum, Vienna’s Museum of Applied Arts (MAK), New York’s Anthology Film Archives, Jihlava IDFF and IFF Rotterdam. Martin Blažíček currently lectures at the Center for Audiovisual Studies at the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (FAMU).

Another tutor who promised to participate is Viola Ježková who studied theology at the Protestant Theological Faculty in Prague and documentary film at FAMU. Her short student film My Body’s Body became the best documentary film at FAMUFEST NOIR 2012. She currently lectures on film. Two fields of study were also embraced by our last tutor Tomáš Potočný who studied sociology at Masaryk University in Brno and documentary film at FAMU. He cooperates with the Czech Television, People in Need and One World IFF. His latest film Tears of Steel: Vladimír Stehlík Meets Lubomír Krystlík (2015) received a Special Mention at Jihlava IDFF.

My Street Films further organizes open seminars for the public where beginning as well as advanced filmmakers can learn more about the basics of filmmaking. In the course of the spring and summer, a series of evenings dedicated to film dramaturgy, scriptwriting and experimental film will be held in Prague and Brno. The lecturers to share their experience include Ondřej Hudeček, whose short film “Peacock” won recognition at Sundance, and director and writer Martin Ryšavý, renowned for his films from Siberia (Afonka Does Not Want to Herd Reindeer Anymore, Malupien and Bear Islands) and films exploring the Vietnamese community in the Czech Republic (Who Will Teach Me the Half of the Character, Country of Dreams and Banana Kids). His latest film On the Water, a metaphysical cruise on the deep waters of an enchanted land, currently enters theatrical distribution.

Welcome the spring in an unconventional way and try to make a short film to be pinned to the online film map of the Czech Republic. You can send your concepts of max. 300 words until April 25 to info@mystreetfilms.cz or submit your finished films until October 1, 2016. The makers of the best films will be able to present their works at the Open City Documentary Festival in London and at Jihlava IDFF.

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