DOK-Leipzig: Promotion Prize of the Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig goes to Finnish director Erkko Lyytinen

Leipzig, 9 October, 2005. On the occasion of the award ceremony of the 48th “Internationales Leipziger Festivals für Dokumentar- und Animationsfilm” (“Leipzig International Festival of Documentary and Animated Film”) the Finnish director Erkko Lyytinen received the junior promotion prize “Talent Dove” of the Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig for his film “Kainuun Tähti” (“The North Star”). The 10.000 Euro “Talent Dove” counts to the highest awards of the festival and is used as start up financing for the next film project of the laureate.

Excerpts from the description: The setting is a small Finnish town called Vuolijoki…The problem: a disaster which daily happens everywhere. A factory that manufactures railway wagons is to be closed down because it doesn’t pay any longer for the Italian mother company. The closure would concern not only the jobs; nearly 50% of Vuolijoki’s population indirectly depends on the factory. It is a race against time…The workers try everything to save what still can be saved. They offer compromises, accept cancelling, negotiate again…They express their requests to the government. But how much freedom of action do the officials still have, trapped as they are in the guidelines of the EU?

The reason of the “International Jury of Documentary Film”: “For his fresh, authentic voice that powerfully tells a very local history, which deals with one of the most important problems of our time, the influence of global economy on all of us, Erkko Lyytinen unanimously receives the “Talent Dove” for his film “The North Star”. Stephan Seeger, Managing Director of the Media Foundation presented the award to Erkko Lyytinen: “I am delighted that this very film has convinced the jury. The story being told painfully reminds many people especially here with us of their own experiences. As Media Foundation, we are happy if our “Talent Dove” can help the festival to develop further on and thus strengthen the international reputation of Leipzig as a major site of documentary film. This can only be good for Leipzig.”