An Oscar nominated documentary film, produced by a Welshwoman from Conwy, is to be shown on S4C later this month.
Kimberley Warner from Conwy is the co-producer of the documentary Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah which has been nominated for a Short Film: Documentary 2016 Academy Awards. The film will be shown on S4C on Wednesday, 24 February at 10.00pm, four days before the Oscars awards ceremony in LA on Sunday 28 February.
The film has already been bought by ZDF/ARTE in Germany/France, DR in Denmark and HBO among others. The journalist Adam Benzine is the author and director, and it is co-produced by Kimberley Warner. Kimberley is an experienced independent film maker who also oversees development for Ffilm Cymru - the lottery film fund for Wales.
The film features three languages: French, German and English, and it will be shown on S4C with Welsh language subtitles under the title Claude Lanzmann: Cysgodion y Shoah.
Kimberley Warner, the film's producers, is glad to see the film shown in Wales ahead of the Oscars, and is eager to hear opinions from her home country;
"The financing and creative journey for this documentary over the past three years has been nothing short of epic. It required Adam and me to do everything from admin to complex negotiation and confronting Claude's great work on a daily basis during that time was emotionally tough. It's amazing to think that I'll soon be at the Academy Awards and that the film will air on S4C shortly before the ceremony. It's these contrasts that make documentary filmmaking so rich: between glamour and small teams fulfilling multiple roles to get the job done; between a kind of mad inquisitiveness about other lives and worlds and a need to bring your work back to your home country and say, timidly, "what do you think?"."
In the 40 minute long film Claude Lanzmann: Cysgodion y Shoah, film maker Claude Lanzmann recalls the making of the 1985 epic documentary Shoah. The film Shoah has been praised widely for its extraordinary telling of the story of the Holocaust in the words of those who experienced it. The film is nine hours long and took 12 years of research and interviews to create.
Llion Iwan, S4C Factual Content Commissioner, is responsible for bringing the film to S4C;
"This is an extraordinary documentary film which has gained international recognition and the great honour of an Academy Award nomination. It deals with one of the most horrific events in European history, the Holocaust, and tells the story of the making of the film Shoah in the words of its producer Claude Lanzmann. He has an amazing story to tell and those experiences that he shares can be difficult for us to comprehend. But his tale is told expertly in this remarkable film, produced by a Welshwoman from Conwy. It is an honour to show the film on S4C."
The film Claude Lanzmann: Cysgodion y Shoah features detailed interviews with Claude as he recalls the long and careful process of persuading Holocaust survivors to talk about their experiences in front of the camera, and how he captured footage of Nazi Party members using hidden cameras. He also talks about his own personal experiences fighting with the French Resistance during the Second World War.
This powerful film has been seen at festivals around the world since its premiere at Toronto's Hot Docs festival in August 2015. It was also shown in the UK for the first time in 2015 at the Sheffield Doc/Fest and then at the UK Jewish Film Festival in London in the autumn. The film had its Welsh premiere in Theatr Colwyn, Colwyn Bay in October 2015.
The film is being produced for the Welsh subtitles broadcast on S4C by Rondo Media. The original English version has already been confirmed for broadcast in several countries, including ZDM in Germany and DR in Demark, and HBO have secured the rights for the USA broadcast.
Notes for editors:
Kimberley Warner is an independent producer from Conwy, Wales who also oversees development for Ffilm Cymru - the lottery film fund for Wales. The former Head of Acquisitions and Development for documentary distributors Mercury Media and Journeymen Pictures, Kimberley has worked to support the work of filmmakers of the calibre of Orlando von Einsiedel, Michael Glawogger, James Moll and Ken Loach.