Centrul Astra Film
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Astra Film Festival

Astra Film Festival 2014 - Jury

Darya Bassel

Born in Ukraine, she studied German language and literature in Odessa. After graduating she moved to Kyiv and worked in TV as a producer. In 2011 joined the team of Docudays UA International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival (Ukraine) where she works to this day as a program coordinator and production manager.

Sorin Botoşeneanu

Dean of the Faculty of Film (The National University of Theatre and Cinematography Arts "I.L.Caragiale" in Bucharest). Organizer of educational programmes, advisor and producer of social and cultural projects, photography, documentary and experimental films. Trainer at film workshops.

Cynthia Close

Her first career was as an artist and instructor in drawing and painting at the Art Institute of Boston. Since 2009 Cynthia has been a Contributing Editor writer for Documentary Magazine. She was the President of Documentary Educational Resources and she served on the Board of Directors of the Society for Visual Anthropology and the Advisory Boards for The Margaret Mead International Film and Video Festival, NYC. Cynthia has been a guest lecturer at Harvard and Cambridge University among many others. She has juried the documentary awards for the Chicago International Film Festival, Doc Challenge and HOTDOCS Film Festival. 

Nicolas Feodoroff

Graduated in aesthetics, is a programmer of FID Marseille, member of the selection commitee, and contributor of the daily of the festival. Art and film critic, he also regularly contributes to other structures for promotion of cinema as well as photography and contemporary art.

Mona Nicoară

Documentary film director, producer and writer, Mona Nicoară was born in Communist Romania and, until 1989, dedicated her early years to becoming a poet. After the 1989 Revolution she began mixing creative work with human rights activism for groups like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, and continued these parallel tracks after moving to New York at Columbia University in 1995. She started working in film in 1997 as an Associate Producer for Children Underground, which received the Special Jury Prize at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival and was nominated for 2001 Academy Award. Beginning with 2005 she directed and produced Our School, which was awarded the Grand Jury Prize for Best US Feature at AFI SilverDocs 

Cristi Puiu

Director, screenwriter and producer, Cristi Puiu shows a keen interest for documentary cinema that transpares in his films. His debute feature Stuff and Dough (2001) is considered to have started the Romanian New Wave in cinema.Cristi Puiu won the Golden Bear at the Berlinale 2004 for the best short film Cigarettes and Coffe. The Death of Mr. Lăzărescu (2005) won the award Un Certain Regard at the Cannes Film Festival and numerous awards at other international film festivals, and has been included by Empire in the Top 500 Greatest Movies of All Time. Aurora (2010) is written and directed by Puiu who also plays the leading role. He directed Das Spektrum Europas for the omnibus project The Bridges of Sarajevo coordinated by Jean-Michel Frodon (2014).


Michael Stewart

A distinguished anthropologist working in Eastern Europe as well as a film Producer in independent production companies and the BBC. Currently Director of Open City Docs Fest, London; working at UCL;  Ph.D. in Social Anthropology;He has been, variously a fellow at the Institute of Advanced Study, Budapest (Collegium Budapest), a Rubin Research Fellow at School of Public Policy, UCL; a Leverhulme Research Fellow, Dept. of Anthropology, London School of Economics.  

Diana Tabakov

Diana Tabakov is in the head of acquisitions at the international platform Doc Alliance Films. She curates the weekly online programme at DAFilms and other cultural institutions. Born in Czech Republic and brought up in Malta until the late 90`s. Started studies at the Charles University in Prague in philosophy and sociology and after that completed her Masters at the London University of the Arts documentary film. In the UK she worked at various film festivals. Since 2009 she worked mainly in projects supporting film professionals in documentary film at the Institute of Documentary Film in Prague and cooperated at the training project Ex Oriente Film Workshop and East European Forum. 

Eugenia Vodă

Film Critic, author of numerous film chronicles in the Romanian cinema press and of a series of correspondences  for major publications from film festivals such as Cannes and Venice. Author of the critical volumes "Cinema Planet", "Cinema and nothing else" and of the volume of interviews "Brief meetings". A member of the International Federation of film critics (FIPRESCI), was part of the FIPRESCI juries in film festivals in Venice, Tokyo, Karlovy Vary. She is the producer of the cultural talk-show  "The Professionals", broadcast by the Romanian National Television with top audience ratings. Winner of the Award for film critics (UCIN), the Award for the best television programme, and of other important awards.

Yang Yonghi

Yang Yonghi was born in Osaka, Japan. After she graduated from Korean University in Tokyo, she has worked as a teacher, theater actress and bilingual radio host. In 1995 she started making films, mainly documentaries. She has also worked as a field reporter for TV news programs reporting from Thailand, Bangladesh, China and other Asian countries. Beginning with 1997, she spent six years in New York, during which time she filmed in various ethnic communities and also obtained MA in Media Studies at New School University in New York.