I’ve just come across Austria’s Festival of Nations website where the results for the 2012 festival are published. I’m astonished to find that of the 200 recipients of awards and diplomas, there is only one representative from the UK – namely, Jim Walker, for his rivetting film Chinese Whispers.
The 199 other prize-winners come from all over western and eastern Europe and from as far afield as Iran, South Korea, the UAE, India and China.
Why, I wonder, have British film-makers simply not figured in any significant way among the 200 recipients of prizes and diplomas? Is it because the UK’s non-commercial film-makers are:
• simply not sending their productions to the festival?
• sending their stuff but just aren’t talented enough to win the judges’ hearts and, ultimately, their heads?
(We all know our film-makers are very talented, dedicated and enthusiastic bunch indeed.)
Could it be that the festival is not sympathetic towards UK film entrants?
Or, finally, are our film-makers maybe being put off by a ruling which, if I interpret it correctly, states that if an entrant is thought by the judges to have submitted a film that is worthy of a screening, it will probably NOT be shown if the film maker fails to attend the festival?
Whatever the reason, this prestigious festival is worthy of IAC members’ attention and it seems a real shame that only one member, Jim Walker, of Bradford Movie Makers, managed to be up there among the 200 worldwide gong-winning, diploma-accruing entrants to represent Britain.
All of which is a round-about way of saying “Many congratulations, Jim, on your well-deserved Silver Medal!”