The project ‘Samuel and the Light’ by Vinícius Girnys won the IBAIA prize and “Cuidadoras”, by Martina Matzkin and Gabriela Uassouf won the Treeline Distribution and Festival Consultancy Prize

The San Sebastian Lau Haizetara Documentary Co-Production Forum has successfully celebrated its fifteenth edition with a notably high level of projects.

The event, which took place yesterday, 26th September 2019, within the framework of the 67th San Sebastian International Film Festival, was well received by the Commissioning Editors and the audience. Five countries were represented by fourteen feature-length projects, dealing with subjects such as seasonal migration, reflections on life, incomplete dreams, social problems, mass tourism and the loss of identity, espionage, sporting values or sacrifice in life.

As a result of the agreement IBAIA has with FIPADOC Biarritz, DOCS Barcelona and the NOKA Programme, the projects “Ariane, The impossible Bet-A Space Odyssey” (France), by François-Xavier Vives, “Samuel and the light” (Brazil-France), by Vinícius Girnys and “El Peso(Spain), by Tamara Lucarini have been presented too.

The main objective of this Forum is to offer an ideal space in which to present documentary projects to potential funders and experts from the audiovisual and cinema sectors.

In the preceding days, the producers of the selected projects attended workshops with professional experts. They worked exhaustively on presentation, both of the storyline and the teaser, and they were able to maximise the potential of their projects before presenting them. In addition, they were given guidelines to improve individualised meetings with the Commissioning Editors, a panel which was more international in flavour than ever: (TVE) Andrés Luque – Executive Producer / (EITB) Aintzane Pérez del Palomar Co-prod. Commissioning Editor / (ARTE) Ali Delici Deputy Director – Arts Department / (SUNDANCE) Bruni Burres Senior Consultant / (TREELINE DISTRIBUTION) Elena MeraInternational Business / (TV3) Jordi AmbrósCommissioning Editor / (AL JAZEERA) Mohammed BelhajEP of In House Production|Production Department / (YLE) Erkko Lyytinen-Executive Producer / (MOVISTAR+) Cristina Merino- Head of Non-fiction Selection / (RTBF) Isabelle Christiaens-Commissioning Editor / (CANAL ENCUENTRO) Karina Reismann-General Coordination / (TG4) Proinsias Ní Ghrainne-Commissioning Editor. In individually-tailored meetings of approximately 15 minutes, the Commissioning Editors and producers were able to talk at length with the aim of specifying possible collaboration agreements.


The programme complemented by the holding of the conference “Viva European Docs! Deepening ties with Latin America”, organised by Europa Creativa Desk MEDIA Euskadi in collaboration with Desk MEDIA of the Netherlands in the context of the Lau Haizetara Documentary Co-Production Forum of San Sebastián, coordinated by IBAIA, Asociación de Productoras Audiovisuales Independientes del País Vasco (Association of Independent Audio-Visual Producers of the Basque Country). The session covered the documentary co-production between Europe and Latin America, successfully.

To close the conference, all the sector professionals in attendance enjoyed the closing ceremony and the awarding of the IBAIA and TREELINE Distribution prizes in the KELER space. Marian Fernández, IBAIA´s President, awarded the IBAIA prize, consisting of €3,000, to the project ‘Samuel and the light’ (Sendero Filmes (Brazil)-Le-Lokal Production (France). Elena Mera, meanwhile, awarded the project “Cuidadoras” (Groncho Estudio) with the Treeline Distribution and Festival Consultancy Prize.

Diego Mas Trelles (DocsBarcelona´s Head of Industry) chose the project “The Gourougou Trial” by Santi Palacios and Simón Casal (Spain) to participate in the next edition of  DOCS Barcelona.

It is important for IBAIA, organisers of the San Sebastian Lau Haizetara Documentary Co-Production Forum, to establish spaces to consolidate specialisation and to thus galvanise the production of new quality documentary projects.