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Our Man in Nigeria: Bart Weiss Brings Documentaries to Africa

by Anne Bothwell 30 Jul 2010 12:10 PM

Last summer, he went to Pakistan. This year, guest blogger Bart Weiss is headed to Nigeria to share American documentaries.


Guest blogger Bart Weiss is director of the Video Association of Dallas and VideoFest.

Last summer, I traveled to Pakistan with the American Documentary Showcase. This is a program to bring contemporary American documentary films to foreign countries. You can read about the experience on Art&Seek and also here.

Today, I am headed to Nigeria with documentary filmmaker Kim Snyder, who is bring her brand new film Welcome to Shelbyville, a portrait of a small town in Tennessee that has had trouble with integration – first, an influx of Hispanics,  then Muslim refugees from Somalia. It’s the kind of film that bring empathy and humanism to the immigration debate, so often mostly filled with rhetoric

I will be posting stills, video and some notes as I go along, talking about our workshops and meetings. I leave this afternoon and get into Amsterdam after nine hours. I have about 6 hours in the airport, and then another nine hours before we hit Nigeria.

This is my first trip to Africa and I have no idea what lies ahead. Of course, we all have many images from film and TV in our heads, but I don’t think this city looks much like the TV show Dallas, so I go with an open mind and an open heart.

Also, wherever I go I will take home dvds of local filmmakers and we will be showing the best at the Video Fest in September.

  • Bart’s trip will be another great experience for him and
    for the American Documentary Showcase program.

    I will also be traveling for the Showcase. I go to Egypt in September.
    Sandra Ruch