Apr 072011
short film
by vancouverfilmschool

There is no doubt when it comes to film festival is one of the hardest events to organize, in this article I will uncover my experience and some of the errors in London Kurdish Film Festival and the organizers.

London Kurdish Film Festival is running its 6th Festival this year, and their goal is to promote Kurdish artist and filmmakers, they accept films all over the world as long as you are a Kurdish director or artist. DO THEY ?

As an independent Kurdish filmmaker in my visit to North Iraq Kurdistan Region in august 2008 in an attempt to shoot my short film ‘MIX’ and to see my old Institute of art student friends which most of them are now teachers in the same institute teaching Drama, Acting & Directing also an opportunity for them to take part in the film.

After going through a hectic time to organize shooting, I was happy to come back to London and start post production procedures, and it took a few month to finish due to the amount of effects that applied to the film.

When I submitted the film to London Kurdish Film Festival in June 2009 I was surprised that I didn’t get any confirmation e-mail letter phone call et.. for the recipient !!! Few month later time were getting close to the festival and still no words from them, so I contacted them 2 weeks before the  festival starts via facebook ! because their e-mail address from their website http://www.lkff.co.uk/ were either wrong or they had a full inbox or it didn’t exists, when I was trying to send them e-mails from my 3 different e-mail addresses it kept coming back with the     ‘mail delivery failed’ message

As I contacted one of the festival committee via facebook he replied with this message:

Dear sangar
i have emailed you after the independent committee’s decision that your films has not been selected for the competition therefore for the the programme of the festival. as festival committee we have invited 7 kurdish and non-kurdish individuals to form pre selection committee to decide on the films to go in to competition. unfortunately your one has been qualified by the selection committee

I red this message for about 5 times but no chance of understanding, I showed it to couple of friends no clue, it is possible that they accepted or not or maybe both !! And I never received any e-mails from them.

So I decided to contact the guy again and he kindly apologized and confirmed that my film is NOT been accepted for the competition.

But still no explanation of the reasons why is not been accepted !

A few days later I visited London Kurdish Film Festival website and I was going through the upcoming programs of this year festival, I noticed they also have a none competition screening !!  and  there is 3 short films in this screening section which they are not taking part in the competition, and 2 of them is by a female Kurdish Director, and that Kurdish director is also a Jury within the festival !! And she have one more film which is taking part in the competition !! in the same festival ! So total of 3 films for one Director, and she is also a jury in the festival ! THAT NEVER HAPPENED IN A HISTORY OF FILM FESTIVAL this is all  been published in their website http://www.lkff.co.uk/
there is also a male Kurdish Jury in the festival who have a feature film in the festival ! does it exist to be a jury on your own film ?!

It doesn’t seem right, if one of the mission of London Kurdish Film festival is to promote Kurdish artist and Filmmakers wouldn’t be fair to replace at lest one of the 3 films with a new Kurdish Director film ? rather than promote one director with 3 films and be a jury on their own films ?! A new face or Introduce another filmmaker to take part ?

What is also worth to mention is that the same director with the 3 films this year also anticipated with a film in the previous London Kurdish Film Festival ! I think we all know that raise so many questions.

Personally I have nothing against the respected Kurdish Directors who are also a jury in the festival . My debate here is about Promoting New Kurdish films and artist, if you ask me so far the mission is not accomplished.

Sangar Kamal

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