Once in a while I get to be the ‘Plus-1’ because of producer and teacher Arleen Cuevas, who is also my wife. Like this year at the International Film Festival in Rotterdam. Her partners in crime, Filipino filmmakers Shireen Seno and John Torres, received the prestigious Netpac award at IFFR for their film ‘Nervous Translation‘.
John Torres and Arleen Cuevas at the premiere of ‘Nervous Translation’
Shireen could not travel to Rotterdam because she is pregnant. And John wanted to get back to Manila quickly because of that. So Arleen represented ‘Team-Nervous’ at the festivals award ceremony. And I got to come along as the Plus-1. (Thank you Shireen and John!)
The moment ´Nervous Translation´ won the Netpac award
Industry, industry and more industry!
Thats the buzz word thrown at us teachers. To network. Be involved. Know whats happening in the industry. Thats the mantra and mandate.
As if Arleen Cuevas and I needed a reminder. We both work as teachers in media management. And I’d like to think that we both have a decent track record as filmmakers. We are passionate about what we do. And because of that we are involved as much as possible with the industry. At events, conferences, screenings and festivals. Regardless of any mandate.
We can be picky about the projects we work on. Our teachers salary allows us that luxury. We stay in touch with friends and professionals in the industry. And we can bring new industry knowledge to you the student.
The NHTV IMEM team at IFFR 2018
IFFR is a great opportunity to network and get new knowledge. It is also great to spend a few days at the Hilton in Rotterdam courtesy of IFFR. You get to have dinner at the same table as the head of the Dutch Film Fund Doreen Boonekamp. Talk about the new artistic IDFA director Orwa Nyrabia, catch up with the latest news from the Bertha Fund and chit-chat with Hubert-Bals Fund producers and directors.
And you get to watch great, unusual films you would not otherwise see. Like ‘Nervous Translation’. Or the Flemish documentary ‘Rabot‘, a film about the lives of people forced to move from their high-rise social housing in Ghent. And of course the thriller ‘The Guilty‘, a story about a Danish policeman who investigates a kidnapping.
But IFFR is not the only event in the Netherlands that matters if you are a filmmaker. We are regularly drawn to the International Broadcasting Conference (IBC) every September. And usually we take a few interested students along.
The NHTV IMEM team with students at IBC 2017
At IBC we find out how the industry is changing. Recent speakers included James Cameron, Will-I-am, and the panel discussions on audience trends in 2017 was an eye opener. IBC covers everything media, from production to storytelling. I learn something every time I go.
Come November we attend the International Documentary Film festival in Amsterdam (IDFA). IDFA is simply amazing.
In my favourite IDFA cinema, the Tuschinski
It is THE international documentary festival in the world. Films are moving, shocking, touching and thought provoking. Like the 2017 premiere of Time Trial, a film about road racing cyclist David Millar on his last professional tour.
At IDFA you find out more about trends in documentary filmmaking. Like Impact Producing. Impact Producing is a buzzword right now. It has taken a foothold in the Netherlands with the Dutch Impact Academy, managed by Bernadette Kuijper. IDFA is the place where you can question filmmakers and producers about new ways of making films. Like Film and Campaign management and Impact Producing.
IBC, IDFA, IFFR – these are key events guiding us through the year. Not just as teachers who are mandated to stay in touch with the industry. But also as passionate filmmakers who are naturally driven to these events, to learn, network and then take that knowledge into the next project – and to you the student in our classroom. And doing this as a ‘plus-1’ is actually a lot of fun.