Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival

Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival
Photo: yidff.jp
The Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival (YIDFF) is a biennial documentary film festival held in the Japanese city of Yamagata. Inaugurated in 1989, it is one of the world’s longest-running documentary film festivals.

The inaugural Yamagata Documentary Film Festival was held in October 1989 as part of Yamagata’s centennial celebrations. Over the years, it has become one of the most important and prestigious documentary film festivals in Asia. On the other hand, the festival has managed to retain its intimate atmosphere, where Asian filmmakers can meet their Western colleagues and exchange ideas and experiences. The YIDFF is very popular among independent filmmakers.

The Yamagata Documentary Film Festival strives to showcase the best achievements in documentary filmmaking, as well as to promote and popularize documentary filmmaking in the region. It explores new trends in the genre and discovers new talents by encouraging and supporting up-and-coming filmmakers.

The YIDFF is a competitive film festival where several prizes are awarded. The Grand Prize of the YIDFF was named after Robert J. Flaherty and Frances H. Flaherty. Robert was an American filmmaker who created the first commercially successful feature-length documentary, and his wife Frances worked alongside her husband on several of his films. The Flaherty Prize is presented to the best film in the International Competition.

Other prizes awarded to works in the YIDFF International Competition include the Mayor’s Prize, tho Awards of Excellence, and the Special Prize. The festival also hosts New Asian Currents, a regional competition for emerging Asian filmmakers. The best work receives the Ogawa Shinsuke Prize, named after a prominent Japanese documentary film director. The jury also presents two Awards of Excellence. The festival’s equivalent of the Audience Award is the Citizen’s Prize.

Alongside competition screenings, the festival program includes special sections, such as Perspectives Japan (a selection of new Japanese documentaries), Africa Views, Politics and Film, retrospectives, special invitation films, jurors’ films, and more.

Yamagata Documentary Film Festival

Photo: yidff.jp




Related Articles