On March 13, filmmaker-to-watch Olga Delane took home the IDFA Project Award for her new documentary project Black Spot Karabash (Poland/Germany). Handed out at East Doc Platform in Prague, the award has secured the talented director accreditation at IDFA Forum 2020 in November and meetings with relevant decision makers, all expenses covered.
Amidst a shuttering Czech Republic, the award was handed out online, as much of the industry event was forced to adapt to the escalating Covid-19 pandemic.
Nevertheless, the project stood out to Adriek van Nieuwenhuijzen, Head of Industry at IDFA, who took particular note of Delane’s talent, calling the project “an intriguing observational work with immense promise.”
Known to IDFA for her films Dorotchka (IDFA Competition for Short Documentary, 2018) and Siberian Love (IDFA 2016), Delane returns now with a new project set in the dystopian landscape of Karabash, a copper mining city in western Siberia.
Despite Karabash being named the “dirtiest city in the world” by UNESCO due to its toxic landscape, Delane does not focus on the city’s environmental catastrophe as expected. Rather, the project illustrates how local inhabitants cover up their daily reality, and instead choose to believe in a better future. A close study of human behavior, Black Spot Karabash observes the planned transformation of Karabash into a “second Switzerland” by the city’s mayor, which would be clean, tidy, and rich.
Frank Müller is producing the documentary project for Doppelplusultra Film und TV Produktion (Germany), alongside co-producer Dorota Roszkowska for Arkana Studio (Poland).