Tangier Film Festival, Morocco
This blogpost is written by Maire Tracey, Senior Lecturer in Media Practice and Programme Leader for MA Documentary Production and MA Wildlife Documentary Production at the University of Salford, and Sanja Nivesjö, Lecturer in Gender Studies at Uppsala University, Sweden.
Maire and Sanja are part of the team that created our project film, All That Is Buried (with Simon Stanton-Sharma, Emma Barnes, Matthew Whittle, Liza Ryan-Carter and Jade Munslow Ong).
All that is Buried was lucky enough to be selected to be screened in competition at the Tangier Film Festival ( 8-11th November 2023). So we set off from Sweden and UK respectively for four days in Morocco - a first-time visit for both of us.
This is the 12th run of the Tangier Film Festival. It was superbly organised with films from all over the world in three categories: drama, animation and documentary. As well as watching 70 short films, a huge benefit of the trip was getting to know the other Moroccan and international film-makers.
We all stayed at Hotel Chellah in downtown Tangier just around the corner from the Roxy Cinema where all films were screened. Delegates shared delicious Moroccan food for lunch each day where we exchanged our thoughts on and reactions to the many amazing short films from around the globe.
The festival opened Wednesday evening to a packed theatre. All that Is Buried was screened on Thursday afternoon with a selection of documentaries, dramas and animations from Morocco, Nigeria, South Africa and Hungary including The Other End of the Street, Monochrome, Bergie, Snif & Snuf, La Lixeria, The Menace from Above and Europe by Biden.
The other South African Film in this group, Bergie a short drama, was also filmed in Cape Town, and won best cinematography award.
The session was attended by other delegates as well as a group of Moroccan school children. At the Q&A after the screening, we explained the South African Modernism team’s collaborative working method, how we co-created content with our four artist-contributors, what we learnt from our the artists, and the genesis of the film, which was borne out of the South African Modernism research project.
It was a joy to share a South African documentary with a North African audience.
We made some good friends and enjoyed the warmth and generosity of our Moroccan hosts. On our last day we were taken to see the point where the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean sea meet and the grotto of Hercules, and we received a personal guided tour by the manager of the Tangier botanical gardens.
We also had time to explore the city of Tangier on our own, including the beautiful Old Medina, Sour Al Maâgazine, the sandy beach, the Grand Socco Market, and another famous Tangier’s film establishment, Cinema Rif, where we sat down for a glass of Moroccan mint tea.
All That Is Buried also screened at The Troubadour in London on the 14th of November as part of the the 9th Annual Earl's Court International Film Festival. It will next be shown at Nottingham Trent University as part of the Linguistics, Literature and Cultures seminar series on the 6th of December.