Welcome to the 13th Encounters South African International Documentary Festival 2011


Call for Entries

The organisers of Encounters are calling for entries from South African and International filmmakers for the Festival. Due to the extraordinary number of entries Encounters has decided to charge a nominal submission fee of USD15. African filmmakers are exempt. Call for Entries.



Audience Award Winners
Press Release available

The 2011 Encounters Audience Award Winners are now available in our press room.

As Festival programmers we are privileged to watch more than our fair share of films on every topic, from all over the globe. This unique position allows us to gauge current developments in the industry – through both the quality and quantity of documentaries produced.

This year we reviewed 400 films from across the globe, 53 of which are South African, from filmmakers of varying professional experience and we congratulate the filmmakers and thank them for their submissions.

Over the last two years, we have witnessed South African documentary filmmakers overcome considerable challenges, not least of which is finding the money. In South Africa it is Industry organisations, Film Commissions, Government and the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) that assist filmmakers.

Regardless, we have noted that the South African entries submitted have improved in quality, and we are excited by the rise in the auteur-driven films, and that some filmmakers have secured international funding and are creating their own exhibition platforms.

We are also proud of the international films line-up, many of which have won top international awards. We strive to select films that are socially relevant to the South African experience, and will interest our diverse audiences.

We welcome our international guests, Göran Hugo Olsson (Sweden), David Sieveking (Germany), Ségolène Hanotaux (France), and Julian Shaw (New Zealand); all the local filmmakers, 25 of them – hailing from Jozi, Cape Town, and Durban; and thank the many experts who are giving of their time to take part in our Panel Discussions.

We thank the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund and the NFVF, our primary sponsors, and all the other organisations, particularly Out In Africa, and businesses that assist Encounters, often in-kind. Their logos, names and advertisements appear throughout the programme.

Thank you to all the Encounters staff and volunteers, who make the Festival possible.

Our programme cover reflects the diversity of documentaries selected this year through the (in)famous icons depicted. There’s music, sports, revolution, human rights, humour, current news, scams and scandals, among other things … So sit back and laugh, be provoked, excited, challenged and moved … and then come back for more.

Mandisa Zitha – Festival Director