The eighth annual Silverdocs Documentary Festival, presented by the American Film Institute and Discovery Channel, announced its slate of films for the upcoming event and conference in the Washington, DC area, June 21-27.
Along with Toronto's Hot Docs, Silverdocs is one of the key nonfiction film festivals, attracting 25,000 attendees and screening 102 films with many premieres, representing 54 countries, including a dozen Nordic features and shorts this year.
Some of the many highlights include director Oliver Stone presenting his controversial documentary South of the Border about South American heads of state and Stephen Kijak's Stones in Exile about the Rolling Stones' recording of the 40-year-old acclaimed Exile on Main Street album.
On opening night, Freakonomics, a collaborative film by noteworthy filmmakers including Alex Gibney ( My Trip to Al-Qaeda) and Morgan Spurlock ( Super Size Me) about the bestselling book that analyzes human behavior with controversial results.
Closing the fest is The Tillman Story, which explores the life and death of pro-football player Pat Tillman who enlisted in the military and died by friendly fire, presented by director Amir Bar-Lev with the Tillman family.
Other highlights include:
• A free outdoor screening of Microcosmos (1996) by Claude Nuridsany and Marie Pérennou showing the mysteries of insects extra close-up.
• Waiting for Superman by Davis Guggenheim (An Inconvenient Truth) about education reform.
• Author/filmmaker Sebastian Unger ( The Perfect Storm) screens Restrepo, covering his year in Afghanistan.
• Waste Land with Lucy Walker showing Brazilian artist Vik Muniz transforming Jardim Gramacho, an alarmingly large garbage dump, to show the power of art.
With the International Documentary Conference running concurrently, 1,200 international filmmakers and professionals attend the event of panels and speakers.
The festival also features a retrospective of films from 1971 to 1989 by honoree Frederick Wiseman. A special program "Peacebuilding on Screen" focuses on films from troubled regions of the world with discussions on international conflict management.