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Doc Edge hits double digits

The tenth edition of Doc Edge (fka the DOCNZ Festival) has unveiled its first titles and industry champion for 2015.

HotDocs' Chris McDonald

HotDocs’ Chris McDonald

Hot Docs’ Chris McDonald is this year’s honoree and will attend the Festival and Forum.

McDonald ran Hot Docs for 15 years from 1998, growing it into North America’s largest and most prestigious documentary festival. During its festival, Hot Docs presents 400+ screenings at 14 venues across Toronto with the help of almost 1000 staff and volunteers. In 2013 McDonald became president of Hot Docs, taking on the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema and the distribution of titles into other theatres and via video and online outlets.

The three titles announced for Doc Edge 2015 are Martin Scorsese & David Tedeschi’s The 50 Year Argument, Ben Patterson’s Sweet Micky for President, and Nick Broomfield’s Tales of the Grim Sleeper.

New York Book Review's  Ben

New York Review of Books’ Bob Silvers: my cleaner adores me

The 50 Year Argument celebrates New York Review of Books 50-year-anniversary and impressive history through rare archive footage, interviews and portraits.

The film had an in-progress screening at last year’s Berlinale before premiering in the UK at Sheffield’s Doc/Fest. (The festival was opened by Florian Habicht’s Pulp, which has its own national release here shortly.)

The 50 Year Argument was one of a number of films which played both Telluride and Toronto last year, which caused concern for Toronto’s organisers.

Tales of the Grim Sleeper

Tales of the Grim Sleeper

Broomfield’s Tales of the Grim Sleeper also played both festivals, having its world premiere in Telluride. Tales puts together the pieces of the jigsaw revealed after Lonnie Franklin was arrested in 2010 for 11 murders dating back over 25 years.

Sweet Micky for President won both the Jury and Audience Awards for Best Documentary at Slamdance in January.

The film follows Fugees founder Pras Michel take on corrupt government, civil unrest following the 2010 earthquake, much opposition, fellow musician and cousin Wyclef Jean, all in efforts to mobilise a presidential campaign for Haitian singer Michel Martelly, aka Sweet Micky.

Sweet Micky in person: musician and aspiring politician Michel Martelly

Sweet Micky in person: musician and aspiring politician Michel Martelly

This year Doc Edge’s Wellington run will be the key attraction of the new Miramarvellous Festival, run by the Miramar Festival Trust and Miramar Business Innovation District. The Screen Edge Forum will also make its first trip to Wellington this year.

The 10th Documentary Edge Festival will run 20 May – 1 June at Auckland’s Q Theatre, and 3 – 14 June at Wellington’s Roxy. The Screen Edge Forum will run on 29 May at AUT in Auckland and 4 June in Wellington. The full festival programme will be launched on 8 April.

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