Astra Film Junior. Children and teenagers, invited to
cinematic adventures in the magical realm of documentary film

Launched in 2009, the documentary film education program will have a special place at this year's anniversary edition of the Astra Film Festival.

The special program Astra Film Junior, launched in 2009, the first and most comprehensive documentary film education program in Romania, invites children and teenagers to Sibiu, from October 16th to 22nd. The selected productions, which will be screened in cinemas and in a full-dome cinema 360, are among the newest and best on the market for narrative documentary films for children and teenagers. The screening program is designed for three age groups: 6+, 11+, and 15+, and it offers young viewers the opportunity to experience a different kind of cinema. The complete list of AF Junior films can be found here: http://www.astrafilm.ro/2023/astra-film-junior.
"Since 1993 and up to now, Astra Film Festival has managed to create its own audience in a genre of film that was unknown until then. Although documentary film is becoming increasingly popular, it is not yet included in cinema programs. As for children and teenagers, they consume a lot of audiovisual content but very little cinema. We thought of this festival within a festival for them: to bring them back to the experience of cinema. We invite them to the magical realm of documentary film," said Dumitru Budrala, founder-director of Astra Film Festival.
The program has been carefully selected to be suitable for the three age groups of childhood and adolescence. For primary school children (6+), animated films and those that introduce them to current world topics (climate change, planets, artificial and natural satellites) have a special place, projected in full-dome cinema 360 conditions, as can only be seen in Sibiu. Because at this age, children already start asking numerous existential questions, the organizers have also prepared a series of films whose characters and stories provide some answers, such as "9andahalf's Goodbye," in which a 10-year-old child explains certain natural changes to his 6-year-old brother; "Tsering on the Top of the World," recommended for understanding adaptation to different living conditions. The program also includes a series of films suitable for viewing by students in grades V-VI.
For middle school students (11+), several films have been prepared about children who, despite their young age, do extraordinary things: a group of 12-14-year-olds creates a trail that will be part of Via Transilvanica; Bogdan carves wood, plays the violin, and plays computer games; Valentin is ill but has a robot that takes his place at school until he recovers; Eva and her friends love the park where they play so much that they get involved in environmental activities; Jasmin seeks to create bridges between her two countries, Finland and Somaliland; twins Raphaël and Rémi set an example of unconditional brotherly love; Storm (12 years old) makes a video about the serious effects of global warming. Their stories represent lessons in civic responsibility, environmental activism, volunteering, help to understand the concept of social inclusion, climate change, the effects of war, and racial discrimination. Middle school children also get to watch films projected in full-dome 360: stories about astronomy, the sky, stars, the zodiac, eclipses, and how a passion for reading can take you to the most unexpected heights.
High school students (15+) are offered films in which the heroes face challenges specific to their concerns. There are films that focus on ethics in the online environment and the limits of online exposure, sustainability challenges and climate change, challenges of virtual worlds, which are so interesting for those passionate about online video games, as well as those in the real world, as solved by a group of Parisian high school students passionate about hip-hop, who understand the importance of their own decisions. Organizers have also prepared full-dome 360 screenings for high school students, about journeys into the inner universe, where we discover the chemistry and secrets of life, or journeys to the outside, where the ice never melts.
The screenings will be complemented by the traditional comic strip competition, the most colorful AFF project, a true continuation of the viewing experience and at the same time a creative method of delving into the audiovisual content watched. And the project "Profession: Educator," dedicated to teachers, includes a special screening: the fiction film "În cancelarie/The Teachers' Lounge" (dir. Ilker Catak), in which we see how a young teacher ends up confronting an entire system.
The screenings will be complemented by the traditional comic strip competition, the most colorful AFF project, a true continuation of the viewing experience and at the same time a creative method of delving into the audiovisual content watched. And the project "Profession: Educator," dedicated to teachers, includes a special screening: the fiction film "În cancelarie/The Teachers' Lounge" (dir. Ilker Catak), in which we see how a young teacher ends up confronting an entire system.
Insert your text heA special educational event this year is the Documentary Film Workshop for young people aged 18-25, organized by Astra Film Festival in partnership with the National University of Theatre and Cinematographic Art I.L. Caragiale, Master Documentary Film section. Participants will learn from industry professionals how to make a documentary film. Details: https://www.astrafilm.ro/en/news/workshop-doc-documentary-film-workshop-for-students
About Astra Film Junior
An educational project through cinema, unique in Romania, launched in 2009, Astra Film Junior is the most popular and largest cultural event dedicated to students. The organizers choose narrative documentary films for three age categories, 6+, 11+ and 15+, which can be viewed on the big screen, in cinemas and in a Dome installed in the Main Square.
About Astra Film Festival
Astra Film Festival Sibiu, launched in 1993 as an innovative project, is one of the most important non-fiction film festivals in Europe. Under the High Patronage of the President of Romania, the festival is organized by Astra Film, CNM Astra, and the Astra Film Foundation, with the strategic partnership of the Ministry of Culture, with the support of the Sibiu County Council, the National Center for Cinematography, the Romanian Cultural Institute, the Consulate of the Federal Republic of Germany in Sibiu, and the Filmmakers Union. The event is co-financed by the Sibiu Local Council through the Municipality of Sibiu.
Strategic partner: Ministry of Culture
Sponsors : HBO Go, Cinelab, Materom Autohaus, Luthelo, CineGOLD, Promenada Mall, DPD Romania, Kulinarium, Sonne
Monitoring partner: MediaTrust
Media partners: TV5 Monde, News.ro, G4media, Hotnews, Spotmedia, PressHub, Turnul Sfatului, Sibiu 100%, Tribuna, Messagerul de Sibiu, Ora de Sibiu, independent Sibiu, Sibiul azi, Hermannstädter Zeitung, Nine O`Clock, Scena9 , Cinemagia, Cineuropa, Film New Europe, Observator cultural, Timpul, AaRC, MovieNews, Cinefan, Cinefilia, Liternet, Cultural Capital, Revista Transilvania, Filmtett.
Communication partner: PiArt Vision
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