Open City Documentary Festival

Announcing programme advisors and pre-selectors for 2022 edition

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We’re happy to announce the programming team for Open City Documentary Film Festival 2022.

Following an open call, we are delighted to welcome eight individuals to our 2022 Pre-Selection Panel. Salvador Amores, Martin Grennberger, Chrystel Oloukoi  and Laura Staab will join returning pre-selectors Wanling Chen, Carmen Gray, Anjana Janardhan and Emily Wright.

Programme Advisors Jonathan Ali, Jesse Cumming and Shai Heredia will work closely with the festival director and director of programming in shaping the selection of films for the 2022 edition. XR Programme Advisor Audrey Pacart will support the Expanded Realities programme, which is curated and organised by Albert Millis again in 2022.

You can read more about our programme advisors and pre-selectors below.

As a reminder, submissions are now open for the 2022 festival. We are welcoming short, mid-length, feature, audio and cross-media non-fiction projects.

Jonathan Ali  is a film programmer and writer based in London. He is Director of Programming for Miami’s Third Horizon Film Festival, and part of the Twelve30 Collective, an initiative dedicated to screening Caribbean cinema in the UK. He began his career with the Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival, where he curated a retrospective of the work of Black Audio Film Collective and introduced the work of the filmmakers of Harvard’s Sensory Ethnography Lab. He was previously a programme advisor at Sheffield Doc/Fest, and is a programmer for Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival.

Salvador Amores is a film programmer and writer based in Mexico City. He currently works for FICUNAM as a curator of its section devoted to avant-garde film, Umbrales. Prior to that he ran a year-long, bi-weekly film series for the Institut Français. Alongside his programming work, he oversees FICUNAM’s Foro de la crítica permanente, a yearly series of activities on and around film criticism and has written on film for publications such as MUBI Notebook, La furia umana, Variety, La vida útil, Revista de la Universidad de México and the Locarno Film Festival, where he participated in its 2019 Critics Academy. Salvador recently co-founded El Cine Probablemente, a print-only magazine for which he is one of the editors-in-chief. He has also worked as a screenwriter and editor for the feature films Ruinas tu reino (2016) and Toda la luz que podemos ver (2020). 

Jesse Cumming is a Programmer with Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival as well as a consultant with Berlinale Forum and Open City Documentary Festival. He previously served as a Programming Associate with the Toronto International Film Festival. His writing has appeared in Cinema Scope, Canadian Art, The Brooklyn Rail, MUBI Notebook, C Magazine, Hyperallergic, Another Gaze, and more. He is currently a Media Lecturer with Ryerson University’s Cairo Campus. 

Chen Wanling is a programmer and translator/interpreter. Grew up in Taiwan. She started volunteering and working in small independent festivals and screening events and discovered her passion for documentary films when she was in university. She decided to become a freelance translator/interpreter in 2011 whilst working as a production assistant. In 2012 and 2013, she was a programme coordinator for CNEX Chinese Doc Forum, a pitching platform and workshop. She then joined the programming team of Taiwan International Documentary Festival in November 2013, where she oversaw the TIDF Competition and much more. She is now a programmer for TIDF and the Head of the Documentary Office in Taiwan Film and Audiovisual Institute (TFAI), the home for TIDF. She’s been invited as a moderator, a guest speaker, a juror, and a decision-maker for various events and festivals. Wanling holds a MA in Film and Screen Studies from Goldsmiths, University of London. She is now based in Taipei with two cats. 

Carmen Gray is a freelance journalist, film critic and programmer from New Zealand who now lives in Berlin. She has written on the arts and politics for publications including The New York Times, The Guardian, Sight & Sound, The Criterion Collection, Art Review, The Calvert Journal, and The Village Voice. She is the chief critic for Modern Times Review: The European Documentary Magazine, and she was formerly Film Editor of Dazed & Confused magazine in London. She is on the selection committee for the Generation section of the Berlin International Film Festival, and the International Short Film Festival Winterthur, and has curated special screenings at film festivals in Portugal and Russia. She has also worked as an industry adviser and consultant. In 2018, she was Theorist in Residence for experimental film at Das Weisse Haus gallery in Vienna. In her previous career as a language teacher, she completed year-long contracts in Moscow, Seoul, Prague, and Buenos Aires. 

Martin Grennberger is a film critic, writer and programmer based in Stockholm. Studies at Stockholm and Södertörn universities. Screenings in New York, Stockholm, Saint Petersburg, among other places. Co-founder of Walden magazine, and co-editor (with Daniel A. Swarthnas) of a monograph on filmmaker Claes Söderquist (2022). His writings have appeared in Lumière, OEI, and Kunstkritikk.

Shai Heredia is a filmmaker, curator, and founding director of Experimenta, the moving image art biennial of India. She has curated film programs worldwide and was the programmer of the 65th Robert Flaherty Seminar. Heredia has co-directed I Am Micro (2012) and An Old Dog’s Diary (2015) which have exhibited at prestigious film festivals and art venues internationally. Both films have won awards including a National Film Award and a BFI London Film Festival award. Heredia has contributed to journals such as The Moving Image Review and Art Journal and PUBLIC and was the co- editor of the Loud Mess issue of NANG magazine. Heredia is currently on the curatorial team for Forum Expanded Berlinale. She is based in Bangalore, where she runs the Graduate Program in Curatorial Practices at the Srishti Manipal Institute of Art, Design and Technology.

Anjana Janardhan is a designer and writer based in London and has written about film and visual culture for publications including the BFI, Sight & Sound, Non-Fiction, Port Magazine, Wilma Journal and Screen Queens.

Chrystel Oloukoi is a researcher, freelance film critic and curator, broadly interested in experimental cinema, queer cinema and Black continental and diasporic cinema. They are the co-curator of Monangambee, a nomadic panafrican microcinema in Lagos and a 2021-2022 curatorial intern at Canyon Cinema.

Audrey Pacart has been a line producer, executive producer, commissioner and curator for over 25 years in cinema and dramas. Now specialized in immersive content, Audrey is a creative producer & consultant, working on projects for film, arts & heritage. Most recently, She was Producer of “Marco Polo Go Round” which was featured in XR film festival selections around the world. Audrey is also Associate programmer at TRIBECA Immersive.

Laura Staab is finishing a doctoral thesis on women’s art cinema and experimental film at King’s College London. She has written on artists and filmmakers including Laida Lertxundi, Kelly Reichardt, Angela Schanelec, Larisa Shepitko and Helena Wittmann for Another Gaze, Film-Philosophy, The Machine that Kills Bad People and Sight & Sound.

Emily Wright is a film programmer, curator and filmmaker who grew up in Portugal and now lives in London.  She is co-founder and curator of Ficción/no/Ficción at the Cinemateca de Bogotá – an annual showcase exploring new tendencies in nonfiction and ‘hybrid’ cinema. She has worked for various festivals including MIDBO and Sheffield Doc/Fest.  Alongside her curatorial work, she continues to work as a freelance producer and creative consultant on nonfiction films, including documentaries for The New Yorker, VICE HBO, The Atlantic and The Guardian. Her filmmaking work has received generous support from Ford Foundation, Points North Institute, Heinrich Böll Foundation, and Proimágenes Colombia (FDC). She is interested in nonfiction films that question established regimes of visibility and audibility and which draw from artistic, archival, ethnographic and performative registers.


Image credit (left-to-right, top-to-bottom): Wanling Chen, Jonathan Ali, Salvador Amores, Chrystel Oloukoi, Martin Grennberger, Jesse Cumming, Shai Heredia, Emily Wright, Laura Staab, Anjana Janardhan,
Audrey Pacart and Carmen Gray.