San Francisco, CA— (October 20, 2011)— The Independent Television Service (ITVS), leading funder of U.S. independent television productions, announced that it has contracted with eight international documentary projects from its 2011 International Call as part of the Global Perspective Project. This year’s selections provide extraordinary access and insight into the daily lives and struggles of people who live in Uruguay, Iran, China, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Myanmar, and India. The productions were selected through a competitive application process, which resulted in 476 submissions from 118 countries representing 72 languages.
“We are elated to have this new crop of projects join our growing catalogue of ground breaking documentaries, each connecting Americans to the world, and the world to Americans,” said Claire Aguilar, vice president of programming for ITVS.
All eight documentary projects are slated for eventual broadcast, including primetime slots on the Emmy® Award-winning PBS series Independent Lens, P.O.V., and the international series, Global Voices.
In the coming months, ITVS seeks to support new projects through the 2012 International Call, continuing its mission to enrich the American television experience by presenting unheard stories from around the world. The submission deadline for projects to be considered for the 2012 ITVS International Call is December 9, 2011. Nearly 136 international documentary projects have been supported through ITVS International’s Global Perspectives Project and its International Media Development Fund since the launch of the International Call in 2005.
The newly funded projects from the 2011 International Call are as follows:
Avant - Producers: Virginia Bogliolo, Pablo Ratto Director: Juan Andres Alvarez
After retiring as a professional dancer, Julio Bocca, one of the most famous ballet dancers on the international scene, accepts the challenge to direct a forgotten national ballet in an unfinished theatre in Uruguay. Avant explores the contrast between Bocca´s quest for excellence and the daily life of this company, set in changing scenery that frames the lives of dancers, workers, cleaners, and technicians.
Before The Revolution - Producer: Barak Heymann Director: Dan Shadur
Before the Revolution, the untold tale of the Israeli community in Iran prior to the Islamic Revolution in 1979, is a suspense story about courage and hastiness, about greed and blindness, and about great dreams versus an impossible reality. And for one young Israeli family — the director of the film’s family — the last daysinTehran are also a private and hurtful story of a long-gone paradise, never to return.
Democrats - Producer: Henrik Veileborg Director: Camilla Nielsson
Democrats is a film about the creation of a new constitution in Zimbabwe. The film follows two top politicians who have been appointed to lead the country through the reform process. The two men are political opponents, but united in the ambition to make history by giving the nation a new founding document that could give birth to a future Zimbabwe.
Fallen City - Producer: Lixin Fan Director: Qi Zhao
Fallen City follows the survivors of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake as they embark on a journey in search of hope, meaning, and identity. Zeroing in on three broken families, the film explores the hearts and minds of ordinary rural Chinese forced to restore their lives and the meaning of life in a world without their home and loved ones. A devoted father, a divorced older woman, and a runaway teenage boy — each on their own journey — become a collective image, struggling to find a new position in a new China torn between tradition and modernity.
In The Shadow Of The Sun – Producer: Brian Hill Director: Harry Freeland
Told over the course of four years, In The Shadow Of The Sun tells the intimate story of two very different members of a remote island’s albino community in Tanzania as a wave of brutal ritual killings targeting people with albinism sweeps their country. First there is Vedastus, a warmhearted teenage boy who cares for his terminally ill mother while struggling to find his own place in the world and a way back to school. Then there is Josephat, a strong willed advocate for people with albinism, who fights to unite his country and dreams of scaling the heights of Mount Kilimanjaro. As the killings escalate, Vedastus flees the island in search of safety while Josephat stands and faces the killings head on.
I Want To Cheer Up, Ltd. – Producer: Mette Heide Director: Kaspar Astrup Schröder
The complexity of happiness is at the center of this story about Ryuichi, the owner of a professional stand-in company that rents out fake family members and friends. At work he can finally be the perfect husband and father that he doesn’t know how to be at home.
Miss Nikki & The Tiger Girls - Producer: Jessica Douglas-Henry Director: Juliet Lamont
The poorest nation in South East Asia, Myanmar has been ruled by a series of military dictatorships for many years. This documentary provides a rare opportunity to go behind the bamboo curtain and explore the lives of ordinary people living in this country through an intimate portrait of Myanmar’s first all-girl band The Tiger Girls.
When Hari Got Married - Producers/Directors: Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam
Hari, a young, but traditional taxi driver in Dharamsala, India, is getting married to a girl he has never met, but with whom he has fallen in love after many mobile phone conversations. Now, frantic preparations are afoot to make sure the wedding goes off without a hitch. Outspoken, opinionated, and funny, Hari grapples with nerves, heartburn, and mounting tension as the day of reckoning draws close. More information about these new projects and all ITVS International programs can be found online at www.itvs.org/series/global-perspectives-collection.
The Independent Television Service (ITVS) funds and presents award-winning documentaries and dramas on public television, innovative new media projects on the Web, and the Emmy® Award-winning weekly PBS series Independent Lens. ITVS was established by a historic mandate of Congress to champion independently produced programs that take creative risks, spark public dialogue, and reach underserved audiences. Since its inception in 1991, ITVS programs have revitalized the relationship between the public and public television, bringing TV audiences face to face with the lives and concerns of their fellow Americans. More information can be found at itvs.org. ITVS is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people.
ABOUT ITVS INTERNATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL CALL
ITVS International promotes the exchange of compelling documentary films between the United States and other nations, going beyond stereotypes and headline news to provide television audiences around the world with new insight into the cultures and people who make up our global community. ITVS International Call enables independent producers from outside the United States to create documentaries for U.S. television. Through the Call, storytellers from other countries introduce U.S. audiences to their global neighbors, opening a window into unfamiliar lives, experiences, and perspectives from around the world. ITVS International Call seeks films in the production or post-production phase and encourages independent producers to submit their projects for consideration. ITVS International Call is an initiative of ITVS and funded by the Ford Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and the Wyncote Foundation.
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