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Astra Film Festival

Astra Film Festival 2016 - Jury

Claire Aguilar

Claire Aguilar is an award-winning film curator, film festival director and public television commissioning editor and broadcaster, with a BA in Communications Studies and a MA in Film and Television Studies from UCLA . She is the former Director of Programming at Sheffield Doc/Fest. She co-curated the Emmy and Peabody awarded series Independent Lens. She served on the Editorial board of the public television series Why Democracy?  She has curated film and media exhibitions for the American Film Institute, the Los Angeles Asian American Film and Video Festival, and the Wexner Center for the Arts.  She is Vice President of the Board of Women Make Movies, and serves on the Executive board of the European Documentary Network. 

Ileana Bîrsan

Ileana Bîrsan graduated from the Faculty of Philology in Bucharest and studied film at the University of Zürich. She worked as an editor for the film columns inTimeOut București and BeWhere! and for the cultural magazines Dilema Veche, Observator cultural, LaPunkt.ro, TheChronicle.ro. Starting with 2009, she has participated as a lecturer in various education programmes of cinematic education. She is the founder of Filmikon, workshops of film education and education through film. She co-founded DokStation Music Documentary Film Festival. She is completing a PhD at CESI (Centre of Excellence in Image Study) and works as a film critic for the Șapte Seri magazine.

Martichka Bozhilova

Martichka Bozhilova is a producer with AGITPROP (Bulgaria) and for the National Geographic Channel. She is the founder and director of the Balkan Documentary Center, and organizer of the annual education programme BDC Discoveries, and the Documentary Rough Cut Boutique at Sarajevo Film Festival. Member of the EDN Executive Committee and Chairperson of DokuFest, Prizren, she has served in juries at IDFA, DokLeipzig, Docudays - Kiev, CineDOC - Tbilisi. Commissioner at the Re-Act Co-Development and Malik Funds, she is lecturer at various workshops in the field of documentary cinema. Martichka received the International Trailblazer Award at MIPDOC in Cannes for creativity, innovation, originality and breakthrough in the field of documentary cinema.

Nick Bradshaw

Nick Bradshaw is the web editor for Sight & Sound, the international film magazine published by the BFI, where he also writes about and oversees coverage of nonfiction cinema. He previously worked as an editor for Time Out magazine and has written film criticism for numerous English-language publications including the Guardian, Independent, Times, Telegraph, LA Weekly and Vertigo. He has an MFA in documentary filmmaking from the California Institute of the Arts.

Sara García Villanueva

Sara García Villanueva. With a Master’s degree in Media and Arts by the University of Valencia, Spain, and Literary Studies at The University Aristotle University in Salonica, Greece, she is Co-founder, Co-director and Artistic Director at Play-Doc, a documentary festival that takes place in Tui, Spain, since 2005. She is co-founder of the the Play-Doc Workshops, a series of activities that open up, encourage, foster, and protect a space for freedom and experimentation, helping emerging talents to develop their projects. She is also programmer for the Play-Doc TV, a VOD cable channel that broadcasts documentaries and other independent cinema.

Veton Nurkollari

Veton Nurkollari is photographer, producer and film programmer. He is currently serving as Artistic Director of DokuFest, Kosovo’s largest and most important film festival, which he co-founded in 2002. Veton is the member of the advisory board of Balkan Documentary Center, and of the selection committee of U.S. based Cinema Eye Honors. Veton is active in the cultural scene of Kosovo through curating film series. He is also coordinating an educational programme of nurturing young film talents in Kosovo and the Balkans through the “Film Factory” project. He is a member of the European Cultural Parliament and the European Film Academy.

Barbara Orlicz-Szczypula

Barbara Orlicz-Szczypula  is one of the programmers of the Krakow Film Festival.  She graduated from the History Faculty (Institute of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology) of the Jagiellonian University in Krakow. Before joining the festival she has worked with the distribution company Apollo Film Ltd. Since 2006 she has been a Vice President of the Krakow Film Foundation. In 2005 she established Film Promotion Agency, now KFF Sales&Promotion in the framework of Krakow Film Foundation’s structure - its main goal is international promotion of Polish documentary, animated and short films.

Vlad Petri

Vlad Petri is a documentary filmmaker and photographer. He graduated from The National University of Theatre and Film Bucharest  (2005) – specialising în Editing  and has a Master’s degree in Visual Anthropology and Media (2014) – Freie Universität, Berlin. He was a trainer at film and photography workshops (Photon, Ideo Ideis, Focus Atelier, GO Bucharest). In 2014, he made his first feature documentary  (“București, unde ești?”), about the protests in Romania in 2012, which premiered at the Rotterdam International Festival and won the Gopo Award for debut.

Gopo pentru debut.

Cristi Puiu

Cristi Puiu is a multi-award winning director, writer and producer. In 2001, he made his first feature film, Stuff and Dough, a road movie shot with a hand-held camera in a near documentary style. He won the Golden Bear for Best short film at the Berlinale (2004) for Cigarettes and Coffee. His second feature, The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, won Un Certain Regard in Cannes (2005) as well as several other awards. His latest feature, Sieranevada, premiered at Cannes in 2016 and is Romanias submission for the 2017 Oscar for Foreign Film. He was president of international juries and has served in the Astra Film Festival jury since 2006.

Michael Stewart

Michael Stewart is the Founding Director of Open City Documentary Festival, London and Director of Open City Docs School at UCL, where he runs a Masters in Ethnographic and Documentary Film. Currently housing four Studios, this Masters provides training for nearly one hundred students in Cinematic non-fiction; Broadcast Documentary; Cinematic Reportage and Immersive Factual Storytelling (including VR). In 2018 UCL is adding a new Studio running a two year MFA to the suite of courses currently on offer. Michael is a trained anthropologist and spent a number of years working in British Television as consultant and then producer.

Julia Teichmann

Julia Teichmann works as a programmer for dok.fest München, one of Europe's largest film festivals. As a film critic and a freelance film journalist she regularly contributes to the daily "Berliner Zeitung" and to the magazine "Film-Dienst". She has served in international juries, including 51st IndieLisboa, the 50th Leipzig International Leipzig Festival for Documentary and Animated Film, the 65th Berlinale - Berlin International Film Festival, as a member of the FIPRESCI Jury.

Alexander Weiss

Alexander Weiss has been the artistic director of the Filmer A Tout Prix IFF in Brussels since 2011. After getting a degree in Contemporary History at the University of Brussels (ULB), he has worked for 15 years in film production (fiction and documentary) and for contemporary art exhibitions in Belgium. His mixed British-German background reflects the diversity of Brussels where he grew up, and where he enjoys the full variety of cultural offerings and its evolving social reality. Under his guidance, the biennial festival Filmer A Tout Prix has a renewed dynamism, opening to multiple forms of media expression around creative documentary films.