It’s been a BUSY few months. Impact screenings, film festivals and a new team member!
THE TERRITORY INFLUENCES EU POLICY
The Amazon has reached a dangerous tipping point for the planet, where if deforestation is not rapidly addressed, all might soon be lost. In partnership with ClientEarth and the #Together4Forests coalition, we’ve been fighting for Indigenous rights to be recognised in a new European Union law that will set rules on trading in products coming from deforested areas – this is a significant lever towards ending deforestation for good.
At the beginning of September, days before the European Parliament voted on the law, we convened a major impact screening for more than 500 politicians, civil servants, activists and press. European Commissioner for the Environment Virginijus Sinkevičius and MEPs Marie Toussaint and Christophe Hansen expressed solidarity with Indigenous communities, while young Indigenous activist and cinematographer on “The Territory”, Kuaimbu Uru-eu-wau-wau, who had travelled for the first time outside his community for this moment, brought home to everyone precisely what was at stake.
Taking the message of Europe’s need to act further, Think-Film and Kuaimbu travelled to Venice Film Festival where he, Producer Sigrid Dyekjaer and Executive Producer Darren Aronofsky accepted the Better World Forum Prize in Filmmaking awarded to Alex Pritz and the Uru-eu-wau-wau co-creation team. This was followed up with a powerful panel discussion on The Territory, the EU law and its expected impact on Indigenous communities, with a keynote address by filmmaker Barry Alexander Brown and supportive words from Brazilian Indigenous fashion activist Zaya, who also had a touching reunion at these events with Kuaimbu, her childhood friend.
These events put the call for Indigenous voices and rights in the new law firmly on the map. Meetings between Kuaimbu and other members of the European Parliament also inspired the debate in Parliament which was held before the vote – and all this moved the needle so that the Parliament voted strongly to protect Indigenous rights, as well as including multiple other provisions which would make the law strong and effective.
Next up, the trilogue discussions, where the EU Member States decide whether to follow Parliament’s lead….
Momentum for action in the EU carried into New York Climate Week, where we hosted a special screening in partnership with Global Canopy. Young Indigenous activist and The Territory Executive Producer Txai Surui was joined by Darren Aronofsky, Mary Beth Gallagher, Director of Engagement from Domini Impact Investments LLC, Johan Lopez, UN Environment Programme Finance Initiative Regional Co-ordinator for the Americas, and critically acclaimed writer-director Richard Curtis (by video), highlighting how pensions and investments contribute to, but can also be a driving force to help end, global deforestation.
In September, in the framework of Venice Biennale, we showcased the film together with an impactful exhibition of unique never-before-seen art pieces created by director Daniel Roher. This event introduced many people to the film, and to the call for more international support for Alexey Navalny. Daniel also distributed books of his art with personally designed inscriptions, with donations to the Anti-Corruption Foundation.
In October, we hosted a massive screening of the film in Brussels which visibly amplified Navalny’s fight and call for press freedom and democracy in Russia. We were astounded by the turnout as the line of people stretched far outside the cinema.
With an opening discussion between Commissioner Věra Jourová and Executive Producer Maria Pevchikh, the event sent a powerful message to the audience to stand with Alexey Navalny. The event made waves in Brussels and Commissioner Jourová’s announcement of the next Russian sanctions package was featured in POLITICO’s article the next day.
The event also featured an inspiring and strong video message from Former State Secretary for the United States, Hillary Clinton showing solidarity for Navalny and affirming her stance for free speech and democracy worldwide. Her video has been picked up and shared across various social media channels, keeping Alexey Navalny and his fight in the public eye.
OUR EXPANDING SLATE
All of our projects seem to be moving at pace at the moment, here’s a quick run-down of updates, including on some you may have forgotten about….
- “Ella’s Riot” had an amazing Norwegian premiere in Bergen
- We are excited to see both “The Recovery Channel” and “Jump Out” pitch their film at IDFA this year, we wish them the best of luck!
- Production for “72 Hours” is finally back on track as they film with the Belarus Free Theatre in Georgia.
- “Holy Shit” is in the final stages of production, finishing the rough cut.
REYKJAVIC FILM FESTIVAL
Amy and Thomas were in Iceland for the Reykjavik Film Festival where they had the pleasure to meet and work with talented creatives at the Impact of the North workshop. It is always invigorating to see more filmmakers adopting and valuing impact in their production.
We are a finalist for the Makers and Shakers Awards 2022! Winners will be announced on the 7th December at BAFTA, London, wish us luck!
The team is once again growing and we are delighted to introduce our newest Impact Strategist, Ugne Pilkionyte, who joins us from Lithuania to strengthen the team’s European policy expertise.
We’re anticipating to be growing our team even further into the coming months so if you’re interested in working with us then keep an eye out for news.
With many more events coming up before the end of the year, follow us on twitter, insta and fb @thinkfilmimpact