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Derks to depart IDFA

After almost 30 years at the helm of the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA), founder and festival director Ally Derks will move on, departing in stages over the next 18 months or so.

2017 will mark the festival’s 30th anniversary. “That seems like a good moment to say farewell and pass on the baton to the next generation,” Derks said.

Here in 2013 for Doc Edge, Derks was named the Doc Edge Superhero. Doc Edge director Alex Lee was a juror at IDFA and Hip Hop-eration, on which Lee was EP, played IDFA in 2014.

The Doc Edge award was one of several Derks has picked up in recent years including Hot Docs’ Doc Mogul Award. The long goodbye from IDFA will allow plenty of time for others to step up to honour what’s been one of the world’s most significant contributions to documentary film.

As well as the being considered the world’s most important documentary film festival IDFA offers a financing and co-production forum; a market (Docs For Sale); a lab programme, an Academy and the IDFA Bertha Fund which supports filmmakers from non-Western countries.

Derks will spend most of next year in Berlin, and formally depart IDFA during its 2017 edition. The 2017 festival will be run by Barbara Visser, with a permanent appointee to come on board in 2018.

Visser’s C.K. won at IDFA in 2010. She curated part of the festival programme in 2013 and has been a board member since the beginning of this year.

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