The Grierson Awards 2012: Winners

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Winners

Deluxe 142 Best Documentary on a Contemporary Theme – Domestic

Terry Pratchett:  Choosing to Die

Terry Pratchett: Choosing to Die

  • Director/producer:Charlie Russell
  • Executive Producers:Sam Anthony, Craig Hunter
  • Production company:Keo North
  • First Shown:13 June 2011; BBC Two

In a frank and personal documentary, author Sir Terry Pratchett considers how he might choose to end his life. Diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2008, Terry wants to know whether he might be able to end his life before his disease takes over. Travelling to the Dignitas Clinic in Switzerland, Terry witnesses first hand the procedures set out for assisted death, and confronts the point at which he would have to take the lethal drug.

Shell Best Documentary on a Contemporary Theme – International

Hell and Back Again

Hell and Back Again

  • Director:Danfung Dennis
  • Producers:Mike Lerner, Martin Herring
  • Executive Producers:Dan Cogan, Karol Martesko-Fenster, Maxyne Franklin, Gernot Schaffler, Thomas Brunner
  • Production company:Roast Beef Productions
  • First Shown:15 November 2011; More 4

Danfung Dennis paints an uncommonly intimate picture of the reality for soldiers involved in the Afghan conflict, both on the battlefield and in the unsettling normalcy of home.

The Open University Best Arts Documentary

Jeremy Deller:  Middle Class Hero - A Culture Show Special

Jeremy Deller: Middle Class Hero - A Culture Show Special

  • Director:Jack Cocker
  • Executive Producer:Janet Lee
  • Series Producer:Pauline Law
  • Production company:BBC Scotland
  • First Shown:24 February 2012; BBC Two

Turner Prize winner Jeremy Deller is one of Britain’s most unconventional artists. He doesn’t draw, sculpt or paint and didn’t go to art school but his work has done more to push the boundaries of art than any other artist of his generation. Best known for his collaborative projects with striking miners, brass bands, and pop fans, The Culture Show follows this fascinating man as he revisits some of his major works to date.

ITN Source Best Historical Documentary

The Love of Books:  A Sarajevo Story

The Love of Books: A Sarajevo Story

  • Director:Sam Hobkinson
  • Producer:Nicolas Kent, Nidal Magrabi
  • Executive Producesr:Peter Webber, Nick Fraser
  • Production company:Oxford Film and Television
  • First Shown:20 February 2012; BBC Four

War-torn Bosnia in 1992: the city of Sarajevo is besieged and burning. Great art treasures are lost in the flames. Only one library remains. Amid bullets and bombs, a group of book-lovers risk their lives to rescue 10,067 irreplaceable Islamic manuscripts. At stake is a nation’s history and identity....

Vimeo Best Science Documentary

After Life:  The Strange Science of Decay

After Life: The Strange Science of Decay

  • Director/producer:Fred Hepburn
  • Executive Producer:Marcus Herbert
  • Production company:BBC Scotland
  • First Shown:6 December 2011; BBC Four

Decay is a fundamental force in nature. To reveal the science behind it, this programme tracks the forces of decay over two months, as they are let loose in a typical house and garden, set up in public view inside a giant glass box. Time-lapse cameras and specialist photography capture the extraordinary way in which moulds, microbes and insects break down our everyday things, and allow new life to emerge from old.

Clockwork Capital Most Entertaining Documentary

The Bengali Detective

The Bengali Detective

  • Director:Phil Cox
  • Producers:Giovanna Stopponi, Himesh Kar, Annie Sundberg
  • Executive Producers:Angus Aynsley, Karol Martesko-Fenster, Gernot Schaffler, Thomas Brunner, Jon Thompson, Steve Leslie
  • Production company:Native Voice Films in association with Almega Projects
  • First Shown:8 September 2011; Cambridge Film Festival

The secrets of Kolkata are revealed by overweight, dance obsessed, intrepid detective Rajesh Ji. Mixing dance and hit songs with the harsh lives of clients, this original feature documentary provides an unprecedented look at modern India through the prism of crime.

ENVY Best Documentary Series

Protecting Our Children

Protecting Our Children

  • Directors:Sacha Mirzoeff, Emma Burman
  • Producers:Sacha Mirzoeff, Sasha Djurkovic
  • Executive Producer:Julian Mercer
  • Series Producer:Sacha Mirzoeff
  • Production company:BBC Productions
  • First Shown:2 January 2012; BBC Two

A three-part observational series shot over the course of a year that covers the work of child protection social workers in Bristol. After scandals like Baby P many people have lost faith in social workers’ ability to help children who are in danger of suffering abuse. Each film follows individual stories with families over months to understand the complexities of the job.

DocHouse & The Bertha Foundation Best Cinema Documentary

Bobby Fischer Against the World

Bobby Fischer Against the World

  • Director:Liz Garbus
  • Producers:Liz Garbus, Rory Kennedy, Stanley Buchthal, Matthew Justus
  • Executive Producers:Dan Cogan, Nick Fraser, Maja Hoffmann, Martin Pieper, Sheila Nevin
  • Production company:Moxie Firecracker Films
  • First Shown:15 July 2011; General theatrical release

In 1958, 14-year old Robert James Bobby Fischer stunned the chess world by becoming the youngest Grand Master in history. He taught himself to play chess at the age of six and started beating seasoned adult chess players at eight. His career highlight came in 1972 when he played the Russian Grand Master and reigning champion Boris Spassky - a series that was equally tied in with the Cold War as it was with chess. After his victory Bobby became the most famous person on the planet, and his already erratic behaviour began spiralling out of control, turning this genius into an unrecognisable recluse and pariah.

CTVC Best Newcomer Documentary

Gypsy Blood

Gypsy Blood

  • Director:Leo Maguire
  • Producer:Rob Wilkins
  • Executive Producers:Russell Barnes, Molly Milton
  • Production company:ClearStory
  • First Shown:19 January 2012; Channel 4

Filmed over two years by award-winning photographer Leo Maguire, Gypsy Blood is an intimate portrait of gypsy fathers and sons and their uneasy relationship with bare-knuckle fighting traditions. The film follows the story of two families, showing how they fight for respect and revealing the price they pay - the cycles of revenge that erupt into sudden and terrifying violence.

Sky Arts Best Student Documentary

The Betrayal

The Betrayal

  • Director/producer:Karen Winther
  • Institution:National Film & Television School
  • First Shown:29 February 2012; BFI Southbank, London

In her teens Karen became a member of a left-wing activist group. Norwegian youth groups were at war and violent confrontations between anti-racists and the growing extreme right movement were frequent During this time, Karen made a choice that has haunted her ever since. This is the filmmaker’s personal journey to confront her past, and a story about both left and right wing extremism.

Coutts Grierson Trustees’ Award

Kevin Macdonald

Kevin Macdonald was born in Glasgow in 1967. He started making television documentaries in 1993 for STV. His TV documentaries included profiles of the documentarians Humphrey Jennings and Errol Morris. His first theatrical documentary, One Day in September, won the Oscar in 2000. Subsequent features documentaries include Touching the Void (BAFTA for best British film 2004), My Enemy’s Enemy (2006), Life in a Day (2010) and Marley (2012). He was also Executive Producer of Britain in a Day (2012) and Senna (2011).

Kevin Macdonald was born in Glasgow in 1967. He started making television documentaries in 1993 for STV. His TV documentaries included profiles of the documentarians Humphrey Jennings and Errol Morris. His first theatrical documentary, One Day in September, won the Oscar in 2000. Subsequent features documentaries include Touching the Void (BAFTA for best British film 2004), My Enemy’s Enemy (2006), Life in a Day (2010) and Marley (2012). He was also Executive Producer of Britain in a Day (2012) and Senna (2011).

Kevin Macdonald was born in Glasgow in 1967. He started making television documentaries in 1993 for STV. His TV documentaries included profiles of the documentarians Humphrey Jennings and Errol Morris. His first theatrical documentary, One Day in September, won the Oscar in 2000. Subsequent features documentaries include Touching the Void (BAFTA for best British film 2004), My Enemy’s Enemy (2006), Life in a Day (2010) and Marley (2012). He was also Executive Producer of Britain in a Day (2012) and Senna (2011).

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