VIII Palaver Tree

[fluid][html css=”margin-bottom:20px;”]


8th Training and Professional Exchange Forum

African Cinemas’ Discourses and Industry in Times of Viral (Dis)Connections: Current Affairs and Training for Digital Distribution


For eight years, at the FCAT we have held the Palaver Tree training and professional exchange forum, a unique space in which young African professionals and international experts come together to delve into the aspects that most influence the film industries of our neighboring continent.

As in any other sector, the COVID-19 pandemic has not only interrupted projects in production, but has also accelerated important changes in the existing ways of making, consuming, promoting and disseminating films; clearly, African films too. For this reason, at Al-Tarab we have redefined both the program and the format of our usual Palaver Tree forum, transforming it into an adapted activity to the present times of mobility restrictions. With it, we want to continue exploring the theory and practice that influence, now with more urgency than ever before, the knowledge, growth and diffusion of the cinemas of Africa and its diaspora in these viral times.

In this new event, we have programmed a series of round tables with which to complement the festival film selection, as well as a series of professional seminars with which we will offer specific training and in-depth analysis on the business and industry of promoting films “made in Africa”.

In one part of the forum programme, we will look into the five thematic blocks that have defined the cinematographic curation of this festival edition. As a way to recognize the ethical, aesthetic and stylistic aspects of African cinemas, approaching it through the work and direct experiences of some films’ authors and experts, in this first part we will explore the five central themes that not only distinguish the selected films, but also represent important discourses for the understanding of the changing realities of the African question in our contemporary world.

In the other part of the forum, through a series of professional capacity-building seminars, we will analyze the mechanisms that currently define the promotion and distribution of independent films – as it is the case for most African films. By giving continuity to the conclusions of the last forum 2019, we will carefully study a series of practical and specific cases in the areas of film marketing and cinema business strategies, which will be presented by a selected group of international industry experts. With these seminars we will look at the aspects that must be mastered in order to position African films in today’s interconnected and global audiovisual markets.

The Palaver Tree is an annual FCAT project, organized by the Centro de Divulgación Cultural Del Estrecho Al-Tarab, with the collaboration of the ACERCA Programme of training for development in the cultural sector of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID). In this eighth edition, the forum also counts with the participation of the Goethe Institute.

[animation name=”fadeInUp” infinited=”false” event=”scroll” duration=”2000ms” delay=”300ms” _display=””]
[columns add_margins=true css=”margin-bottom:20px;”]
[column width_sm=”1″]
[html ]


[column width_sm=23 css=”position:relative;”]
[html ]


[column width_sm=1 css=”position:relative;”]
[html ]


Calendar and registration


[fluid][html tag_list_style=”bulletlist-20″]


  • 12:00 (CET)


  • 12:00 (CET)


  • 12:00 (CET)


  • 10:30

  • 11:00



  • 11:00
  • 16:00



  • 12:00 (CET)


  • 17:00 (CET)


Programme of Themes and Speakers



12:00 – 13:30 | Round Table: “LOL: humor in African cinemas”

(Available in: Spanish and French)

For several years now, FCAT audiences have praised the festival programming, but many have also underlined the too-often unsmiling aspects of its content. African cinemas are generally associated with social themes, in many cases treated with a serious tone and in which drama occupies a prevalent place. However, in African films there are also several comedies and stories with which to laugh out loud.

– Marguerite Abouet
– Demba Cissoko
– Laurence Attali

Moderator: Pablo de Maria


Marguerite Abouet

Marguerite Abouet was born in 1971 in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. At 12 years old, she and her brother were sent to live with their uncle in Paris to embark upon ‘lengthy studies’. As it happened, those studies were cut short and she embraced the punk lifestyle while making a living babysitting triplets, caring for elderly people, waiting tables and working as an assistant at a law firm. She began to write novels that she never sent to any publishing companies. She now lives in Romainville and works as a full-time writer. Aya de Yopougon is her first comic. The film won First Prize at Angoulême Francophone Film Festival in 2006. She also wrote Akissi, a comic which focuses on a character inspired by her own childhood in Abidjan, and Bienvenue, the story of a young woman who arrives in Paris.

Demba Cissoko

Aboubacar Demba Cissokho is a Senegalese journalist specialising in “Arts and Culture” and a film critic. He works in Dakar, Senegal, where he lives. Since June 2015, he runs the blog Le Grenier de Kibili, in which he publishes columns, notebooks, analyses and reviews on topics related to arts, culture, history, memory and heritage. He covers national cultural news and in his writings he criticizes the artistic production of creators from Africa and elsewhere, at festivals, literary and cinematographic meetings and other biennials. All these journalistic activities and participation at meetings have enabled him to acquire a solid experience in the criticism of the artistic production of creators from Africa and elsewhere.

Laurence Attali

Laurence Attali studied philosophy and cinema at Paris Sorbonne and theatre at Vincennes, before becoming a film editor. She worked on several features and documentaries before moving to directing in 1992. She made her first documentary, Mourtala Diop voyageur de l'art, in Senegal. She founded the production company Autoproduction and started to produce and direct most of her films in Dakar. She directed several documentaries such as Même le vent…, Baobab and Le déchaussé before her first fiction in 1999. Her films have been selected by numerous festivals, including the Venice Biennale, Locarno and Rotterdam. She obtained the Senegalese nationality in 2004. Since 2000, she produces and edits Ousmane William Mbaye’s documentary films, such as multi-awarded Kemtiyu Cheikh Anta, Président Dia, Mère-bi and Xalima la plume.

Pablo de María

Director of the Oviedo-SACO Contemporary Audiovisual Week. Currently he also coordinates and programs the cycle “Dialogues between cinema and painting” organized by the Museum of Fine Arts of Asturias. He also develops cultural programs for the Princess of Asturias Foundation and La Noche Blanca de Oviedo. He has participated in juries of international festivals such as Curtas Vila do Conde, Gijón Film Festival, LBTGIQ Festival Centro Niemeyer and Seville European Film Festival. He has collaborated with film festivals such as the Seville European Film Festival SEFF, the Tarifa African Film Festival FCAT, and the Gijón International Film Festival, among others. He has been collaborating for years in different RTPA programs as a scriptwriter, content editor and/or presenter. He has published and continues to publish in different media: Caiman Magazine, Vërtigu, Post Magazine, Tempos novos, the newspaper La Nueva España, as well as in different festival catalogs.



12:00 – 13:30 | Round Table: “Despite it all, artists create: being an artist in Equatorial Guinea”

(Available in: Spanish)

It is often said that artists, like intellectuals, are the true ambassadors of a country. In the case of Equatorial Guinea, there are only a few authors who, despite it all, manage to create and disseminate their work within their own borders. Talking to the protagonists and the filmmakers who have portrayed them, in this round-table we will explore how, in a country without freedom of expression, artists embody voices of resistance that speak to us as emissaries in exile.

– Marcelo Ndong
– Rocío Cadahia
– Juan Tomás Ávila

Moderator: Lucía Mbomio


Marcelo Ndong

Marcelo Ndong, actor, narrator and circus performer from Equatorial Guinea, is also known as Manoliño Nguema, a pseudonym he used as an article writer for the magazine “El Patio”. In 1976 he started to study Medicine at the University of Santiago de Compostela, while he began his mime shows in Spain, France, Germany and Italy. In 1990 he returned to Equatorial Guinea where he created a community theatre and the School of Theatre and Circus in Malabo (1994), the theatre company “Nueva Ola” (1997) and the Papaya House of Culture in Malabo (2013).
As an actor and storyteller rooted in Equatorial Guinea, he sporadically projects himself abroad, through presentations at Casa Africa or, more recently, with the presentation of his life story performed in the theatre in the company of actors Gorsy Edú and Raimundo Bernabé.

Rocío Cadahía

Rocío Cadahía is a scriptwriter, specialized in documentary projects. She has shot in many countries such as Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala, El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Morocco and Spain, always committed to projects with cultural and social content. She has worked both for independent production companies and for international organisations such as the FAO, the UNDP, NGOs such as Aldeas infantiles, Wildlife Conservation Sociaty…in documentary projects, spots and reports. The documentaries “Manoliño Nguema” or “El Secreto del bosque”, which she has scripted, have received numerous awards in festivals around the world. She currently chairs the NGO AGARESO (Galician Association of Communication for Social Change).

Juan Tomás Ávila

Of Annobonese origin, Juan Tomás Ávila Laurel was born in 1966 in Malabo (formerly Santa Isabel). A nurse by profession, he is a writer of the new generation, who currently dominates the literary scene in Equatorial Guinea. He stands out particularly because he is one of the most prolific Guinean-Ecuadorian authors. A well-known writer outside his country, Ávila Laurel’s work is characterised by an acute commitment to socio-political reality. His writings convey a severe and accurate social criticism, condemning the endemic economic inequalities in his country in particular and in Africa in general. He had always lived in Equatorial Guinea until 2011, when he decided to leave his native land, after a hunger strike and after writing an Open Letter to the President of the Spanish Parliament, José Bono Martínez. Juan Tomás Ávila Laurel currently lives in Barcelona where he continues his literary and political activities. He was director of the literary magazine “El Patio”, and also of “Atanga”, the only literary and cultural magazine published in Equatorial Guinea. Ávila Laurel has an abundant literary production covering all genres; he is the author of several novels, plays, poetry, essays, even film scripts. To facilitate the publication of his writings, Ávila Laurel founded his own publishing house, Ediciones Pángola. Today his books are published both in Equatorial Guinea by the Spanish Cooperation Agency and in Spain. Titles published include: “Poemas: Ramblas” (1994); “Historia íntima de la humanidad” (1999); “La carga” (1999); “El desmayo de Judas” (2001); “Nadie tiene buena fama en este país” (2002); “Cómo convertir este país en un paraíso” (2005); “Guinea Ecuatorial. Vísceras” (2006); “Avión de ricos, ladrón de cerdos” (2008) y “Arde el monte de noche” (2009). He has unpublished works such as “Africa ya dejó de mamar” and the film script “Un día vi cien mil elefantes”.

Lucía Mbomío

Lucía Mbomío (Madrid, 1981) is a journalist. She is currently a member of the staff of “Aquí la Tierra”, TVE1. She has a column in El País called “Barrionalismos” and contributes to other media such as Vogue, Mundo Negro, Afroféminas, Píkara Magazine or Ctxt. She has written two books “Hija del camino” and “Las que se atrevieron” and participated in a third one, “Tranquilas. Historias para ir solas de noche”.



12:00 – 13:30 | Round Table: “Anti-colonial visions: 60 years of African independence”

(Available in: Spanish, English and French)

For many African countries, the next few years will mark six decades of independence from the former European powers. In these sixty years, not only have the new African states been defined, but it has also been possible to review facts,(hi)stories and discourses that colonization imposed on the entire continent. A selection of documentaries and an animation short film will be the common thread to rewrite some key parts of some unknown moments of the History of Africa.

– Mbuyi Kabunda
– Billy Woodberry
– Lucie Viver

Moderator: Olivier Hadouchi


Billy Woodberry

Born in Dallas in 1950, Billy Woodberry enrolled at the UCLA Film School in the 1970s and is one of the leading directors of the L.A. Rebellion. His student short film The Pocketbook, an adaptation of the short story by Langston Hughes, Thank You, Ma’am, was dedicated to modernist photographers such as Paul Strand and Helen Levitt. Bless Their Little Hearts, directed in 1983 and written by Charles Burnett, is his only fictional feature film. Woodberry has also appeared in Charles Burnett’s When It Rains (1995) and Haile Gerima’s Ashes to Embers (1982). He has provided narration for films such as Thom Andersen’s Red Hollywood (1996) and James Benning’s Four Corners (1998). In 2015, he directed the documentary film And When I Die, I Won’t Stay Dead, a journey into the life and work of beat poet and activist Bob Kaufman.

Mbuyi Kabunda

Doctor in International Relations from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Mbuyi Kabunda was Professor and Head of the Department of International Relations at the University of Lubumbashi (DR Congo). He is also Professor and Member of the African Studies Group (GEA) at the Autonomous University of Madrid and the International Institute of Human Rights in Strasbourg. Among other things, he also serves as President of the Spanish Association of Africanists (AEA), based in Madrid. He is the author of around one hundred publications on African International Relations: regional integration, development and gender issues, human rights, conflicts and ethnicity in Africa, internal and external African migration, South-South cooperation, African political and economic systems, Africa in globalisation, all subjects on which he has participated in various international events and congresses.

Olivier Hadouchi

An independent programmer and film historian, Hadouchi is the author of a thesis on cinema and the Tricontinent (Africa, Asia and Latin America) in the context of the struggles for independence. He has contributed to several collective works (on Chris Marker and Les
statues meurent aussi, on the "Third World" and non-aligned countries for the museums of
Belgrade and Ljubljana, and on internationalism for Tranzit-Prague) and magazines (on the
Pan-African Festival in Algiers for W. Klein's Third Text, CinémAction & Mondes du cinéma).
He was also a member of the documentary jury of the Festival of Cultural Resistance in
Lebanon in 2013 and the Algiers International Film Festival (Journées du film engagé) in
2016. He has also participated in numerous festivals (Rencontres Cinématographiques de
Béjaïa, Panorama des Cinémas du Maghreb et du Moyen Orient, Douarnenez Film Festival,
Amiens International Film Festival, Rennes’ Travelling Festival, DocLisboa,
DocumentaMadrid, Arabiyat/Cinémathèque de Tanger…). He was a member (alternate) of
the Aide aux Cinémas du Monde Commission and a member of the France-Portugal
Commission (CNC-ICA). He has also been in charge of designing special film series and
evenings for various art centres (Le BAL-Paris, Galeria ZdB-Lisbon, The Mosaic Rooms-
London…), associations (Bandits-Mages & Mondes du Cinéma à La Réunion) and
international museums (Reina Sofía and Jeu de Paume).

Lucie Viver

After studies in history and philosophy, Lucie Viver worked as an assistant director. In particular, she worked on movies by Otar Iosseliani, Mati Diop and Rabah
Ameur-Zaïmèche. In 2013, she was admitted to La Fémis Screenplay Workshop. Since then, she has been developing several documentary and fiction film
projects. Sankara is not dead is her first film.



10:30 – 11:00 (CET) – Presentation: Introduction to the Capacity-building Session of the VIII Palaver Tree.

(Available in: Spanish and French)

The Head of the Department of Cooperation and Cultural Promotion of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID) will present the new virtual format of this forum. In all these years, thanks to the constant commitment of the ACERCA Program (Training for Development in the Cultural Sector) of the Spanish Cooperation, the Palaver Tree has become an annual reference event for the promotion of African cinemas from Spain. For the first time, the forum will be held remotely, with a specific series of online training sessions, which seek to benefit both FCAT participants, as well as dozens of young film professionals and cultural managers from Africa and Latin America who will follow it via Zoom.

Elena González, Head of the Department of Cooperation and Cultural Promotion of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation – AECID

11:00 – 12:30 (CET) | Industry Seminar:
“African cinemas, independent cinemas: the film business in the new viral times of today’s interconnected multi-screen world”

(Available in: Spanish, French and English.)

Many African films are independent products that are completed by their authors through many individual efforts, collaborations and international alliances. The commercial positioning and distribution of this type of films has changed significantly with new technologies. In the same way, the COVID-19 pandemic has revolutionized audiovisual consumption, making it an activity that is today more “viral” than ever before. What are the main disruptions in Africa now in this changing sector? How are these times transforming the way African films are positioned on exhibition circuits? How can you turn a production profitable in our multi-channel global audiovisual markets?

– Khadidia Djigo
– Chioma Onyenwe
– Theresa Maria Hill

Moderator: Federico Olivieri


Khadidia Djigo

Khadidia Djigo is the director of the cinema and exhibition hall of CANALOLYMPIA TERANGA since May 2017 in Dakar (Senegal). Passionate about culture and the digital, she studied Trade and International Business in Bordeaux, and then began her career at the United Nations, New York, as an assistant to the Minister Counselor with a focus on women in society. Her career in international relations then continued in the Senegalese delegation to UNESCO. After a few years at Ringier Senegal to promote the development of the Expat-Dakar website, Khadidia finally joined the Vivendi group within the African film network CANALOLYMPIA. With multiple hats, she is now in charge of team training and the launch of CanalOlympia theatres in English-speaking countries, in particular Nigeria and Rwanda, and in a few months, Sierra Leone and Ghana.

Chioma Onyenwe

Chioma Onyenwe is a Nigerian Filmmaker and Artistic Director for the Africa
International Film Festival with interests spanning through film, television,
theatre, web content and documentaries. Her first feature ‘’8 Bars and a Clef’’,
was nominated for the 2016 AMAA Award for Best First Feature Film by A
Director. She produced a debut theatre play – August Meeting, which has now
gone on a nationwide tour.

Theresa Hill

Theresa Hill has worked in the documentary field for the past 20 years. She has worked on several award winning regional and global film projects, such as the Steps for the Future, Why Democracy and Why Poverty projects. She is currently manager at STEPS, a Non-Profit organisation, passionate about the power of documentaries to disrupt, shift & move the world around us and acquisitions manager for the AfriDocs project, an exciting African documentary online platform. She been a documentary jury member for the Zanzibar International Film Festival 2018 and a programmer for the documentary category for the Durban International Film Festival 2019. She serves on the board of the Ladima Foundation , a Pan-African non-profit organisation founded with the aim of contributing to correcting the major imbalances within the industry by supporting women in a variety of roles within filmmaking, video production and related content development, through a range of projects and interventions.

Federico Olivieri

Federico Olivieri is a journalist, cultural manager and independent researcher whose work focuses on media, communications and the arts for social change. In 2007 he obtained a BA in Journalism from the University of Seville (Spain), followed by an MA in Global Media and Post-National Communication from SOAS (University of London). After years of work for Spain’s development agency (AECID) in Kenya and different projects of non-profits in Spain, Senegal, South Africa and the USA, in 2016 Olivieri completed a PhD in Communication and Cultural Studies at the University Pablo de Olavide (Spain). His thesis explored the history of Sub-Saharan African Cinema and the meaning of Interculturality at film festivals. He co-founded the Slum Film Festival (Kenya) and he is a member of the Tarifa-Tangier African Film Festival-FCAT since its founding in 2004.



11:00 – 12:30 (CET) | Industry Seminar: “European mechanisms for the co-production and distribution of African cinema: the case of Germany in Africa and Europe”

(Available in: Spanish, French and English)

In recent decades, Germany has positioned itself as one of the main European co-producers of African films. Along with France, the country plays a fundamental role in the dissemination of many African movies through its network of Goethe institutes and, furthermore, has a prominent role in the commercial distribution of many titles in Europe. In this webinar we will analyze the strategies and direct experiences of renowned film agents who work in the creation, promotion and diffusion of films from Africa, both from Europe and Germany and in the neighboring continent.

Opening greeting by Eloisa Suárez, head of cultural programming at the Goethe-Institut Madrid.


– Alex Moussa Sawadogo
– Sarika Hemi Lakhani
– Bernd Wolpert
– Marc-André Schmachtel

Moderator: Dorothee Wenner


Alex Moussa Sawadogo

Alex Mousa Sawadogo is the new General Delegate of FESPACO. He is the creator of the Afrikamera festival in Berlin, the founder of Ouaga Film Lab – a film development and co-production laboratory in Burkina Faso – as well as artistic attaché for the Lausanne African Film Festival, and Fundmanager of Fonds Jeune Creation Francophone Alex Moussa has been working for over ten years to promote African cinema.
Furthermore he co-curated the African films at the International Short Film Festival Winterthur and was artistical advisor for the “Open Doors“ 2012-2015“ program at Festival del Film Locarno. He is currently
acting as a cinema expert in the creation of the Africa2020 Season, which will open in France. Alex Moussa Sawadogo lives between Burkina Faso and Germany.

Sarika Hemi Lakhani

Born to a German mother and a Kenyan/Indian father, Sarika was raised in the South of Germany. She began her
professional career as a production assistant and coordinator for Studio Babelsberg, followed by several national and
international productions. Sarika studied Film Production from 2002-2006 at the German Film-& TV Academy (dffb) in Berlin, and completed a post-graduate program entitled “L`Atelier Masterclass”, a collaboration of the Film Academy in Ludwigburg and La Femis in Paris. During the Production of “Germany 09”, Sarika was approached by Marie Steinmann and Tom Tykwer to support their pilot project SOUL BOY. Today she is the managing partner at ONE FINE DAY FILMS, and a member of the European Film Academy.

Bernd Wolpert

Bernd Wolpert is the managing director of EZEF. Born in 1956, he studied Philosophy, German Literature and History at the Universities of Heidelberg and Tuebingen. After his professional training as highschool teacher, he worked briefly as teacher before shifting in 1985 to media pedagogics and film distribution. Jury Member for IINTERFIM at the Festivals in Fribourg, Mannheim-Heidelberg, Leipzig. He is engaged in two regional Filmfestivals, dedicated to films from Africa and Latin America.

Dorothee Wenner

Dorothee Wenner is a freelanced filmmaker, writer and curator based in Berlin. She has been working for the Berlin International Film Festival since 1990 as a programmer for the International Forum and since 2000 as delegate for the festival for films from Sub-Saharan regions and South Asia. From 2009-17 she joined the programming team of the Dubai International Film Festival. Her latest work as a filmmaker is the webseries Kinshasa Collection (2017)

Marc-André Schmachtel

Born in Germany, schooled in Namibia, Marc-André Schmachtel studied francophone cultural studies, modern history and Latin American Studies in Saarbrücken and Québec (Canada) and did his master thesis on francophone funding schemes in African cinemas. From 2006-2008 he was organizing regional film festivals, and since 2008 he is working for the Goethe-Institut. First in Cameroon (program and language department) and from 2010 to 2016 as head of Goethe-Institut Nigeria. He initiated several film projects (Documentary film forums in Cameroon and Nigeria, the Mokolo film platform (now cinidb.africa), the Mini-EAVE series in Nigeria and several short film workshops) and partnerships with AG Dok, the Dokfest.Munich and others. Since 2016 he is in charge for TV and radio cooperation/coproduction at Goethe-Institut headquarters in Munich. He is member of the international board of the INPUT-conference.


16:00 – 17:30 (CET) | Industry Master-class: “Digital marketing for independent films: cases of outside-the-box and engaging campaigns for niche audiences”

( Available in: Spanish, French and English.)

The masterclass explores some of Alphapanda’s digital marketing campaigns for independent films. These cases are of particular interest because of the level of engagement online and the innovative approach used to reach niche audiences, including the use of outside-of-the-box content, creation of physical events, outreach to influencers, visual storytelling, user-generated content, and multi-platform presence.

Presented by Valentina Neumann, expert in film marketing at Alphapanda (Italy-Germany)

NB: This master-class will only be accessible to registered participants. It will not be broadcasted live on the FCAT YouTube channel. Registrations, until full capacity, are available for free via Zoom.

Valentina Neumann

Valentina Neumann works for Alphapanda, a film marketing agency based in Berlin, where she
handles the digital marketing of arthouse and independent films during their festival career and
theatrical release. Since September 2015, she also has been the community manager for the
European Film Awards, covering their social media presence throughout the year and during the



11:00 – 12:30 (CET) | Industry Seminar: “The diffusion of African cinemas in times of viral changes: the role (of programming) of film festivals (in)formed in the virtual space and the internationalization of African cinemas”

( Available in: Spanish, and French)

The digital revolution has been transforming, for some years now, the traditional ways of producing, promoting, programming and showing films at film festivals around the world. Social restrictions and consumption changes imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic are accelerating many of these disruptions, heralding futures that look more transnational and virtual than ever before. What is the role of film festivals in these viral times? How is African film curation understood in a world of multi-passport productions?

– Xavi Lezcano
– Alessandra Speciale
– Luis Miranda

Moderator: Mane Cisneros


Xavi Lezcano

Engineer in image and sound and Master in cultural management. In 2014 he founded Americana Film Fest and in 2019 he made the leap to independent film distribution with the creation of Flamingo Films, a distribution company that has won awards at the Seville Festival, D’A or Americana and which distributes, among other films, Abou Leila by Amin Sidi-Boumédiène. He is currently a member of the board of directors of Catalunya Film Festivals, is the driving force behind Pantalla, the federation of film festival associations, and a founding member of Próxima, an association of distributors of independent and auteur films in Spain.

Alessandra Speciale

Since 2013 she is consultant Africa and Arab Countries at Venice International Film
Festival and head of the project of Final cut in Venice, a workshop to support African and
Arab films in post production. Since 1991 she is artistic director of the African, Asian and
Latin America Film Festival of Milan, Italy. With the Association COE she has distributed in
the Italian alternative circuits more than 200 films. She has collaborated for other festivals
as Locarno and San Sebastian. She is also creative documentary filmmakers. In 2016 she
has been elected President of Milano Film Network.

Luis Miranda

Luis Miranda (1970, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria) has been directing the Las Palmas de Gran Canaria International Film Festival since 2015 and joined the team in 2003. He has a PhD in Audiovisual Media from the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid and a degree in Art History from the Universidad de Valladolid. He is the author of the book Takeshi Kitano (2006, Ediciones Cátedra), and editorial coordinator of the books China siglo XXI: desafíos y dilemas de un nuevo cine independiente, 1992-2007 (2007, Festival de Granada – Cines del Sur) and Las edades de Apu. Studies on Satyajit Ray’s Trilogy (2013, ULPGC Film Hall). He has published around twenty articles in various books and publications specializing in the History of Film, is a part-time associate professor in the Degree in Film at the Universidad del Atlántico Medio (Gran Canaria), and regularly gives free courses in the Aula de Cine at the Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.

Mane Cisneros

Doctor in Ethnology from the EHESS (École en Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales), Paris. Degree in Geography and History from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Master’s degree in Cultural Anthropology from the Universidad Nacional Itztapalapa in Mexico City. She is president of Al Tarab and founder and director of the African Film Festival FCAT. She has been a judge at numerous international and African film festivals around the world, a member of the ICAA film support committee and is a Knight of Arts and Letters of the French Republic.



12:00 – 13:30 | Round Table: “The Fires Next Time: Systemic Racism in Western Countries”

(Available in: Spanish, and French)

Year after year, some tragic news remind us that racism is not just a concept, but a reality anchored in our history dominated by the Western order, which is still present in deep prejudices, in social structures, in white privileges and in many official institutions. From police violence in the urban suburbs of our global cities, to the discrimination experienced by migrants, this round-table will look at the various aspects of systemic racism that reflect the conclusions of James Baldwin in an almost prophetic way: the next time it will not only be “the fire”, but fires, in the plural.

– Moha Gerehou
– Hind Meddeb
– Xavier Artigas

Moderator: Tania Adam


Moha Gerehou

Journalist for elDiario.es and contributor to Vogue magazine. Former president of SOS Racism in Spain. Expert in racism issues, with analysis in articles and videos. Author of the monologue “Cómo sería mi vida si fuera un negro de película” (‘What would my life be like if I were a black man in a film’) and chosen as one of the ‘European Young Leaders 2020’ by Friends of Europe.

Hind Meddeb

French-Tunisian documentary filmmaker and journalist, Hind Meddeb currently works between Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East. Citizen of both sides
of the Mediterranean, she has explored the complexity of Arab youth. Between 2011 and 2013, Hind Meddeb directed Electro Chaabi and Tunisia Clash, two
films observing the Arab revolutions through the eyes of young people in working-class neighbourhoods. Paris Stalingrad, co-directed with Thim Naccache, has
been selected in many international film festivals like Cinéma du Réel, Toronto International Film Festival, Journées cinématographiques de Carthage, Doc NYC
and Cairo International Film Festival.

Xavier Artigas

Xavier Artigas (Sabadell, 1980) is a sociologist and visual artist. He began his career in filmmaking in 2008, working alongside directors such as Mercedes
Álvarez and Ricardo Íscar. In 2012, he directed and produced his first documentary feature, [No-res]. Life and Death of a Space in Three Acts.
Both directors are cofounders of the Metromuster cooperative and co-directors of Ciutat morta.

Tania Adam

Journalist and cultural producer, specialized in African diasporas and music, founder of Radio Africa Magazine. She works as a presenter at Radio Àfrica Betevé (91.0 FM) and collaborates with El Salto Diario, La Directa, Africa is a Country and Ctxt, among others. She has presented the interview program Terrícoles in Betevé and African Bubblegum Music in Ràdio Primavera Sound. He has collaborated with Els matins de TV3. Her work focuses on the analysis and thought generated around the black diasporas in the world, with a special emphasis on African music and women. She has also curated public programs such as “Microhistòries de la Diàspora. Experiències encarnades de la dispersió femenina” (La Virreina Centre de la Imatge, 2018-2019) or the program of debates in civic centers around the exhibition “Making Africa” (CCCB / ICUB, 2016).



17:00 – 18:30 | Round Table: “The Third Root: Afrocinemas of Latin America”

(Available in: Spanish)

After centuries of the abominable transatlantic slave trade, Africa is part of the Americas, in all its latitudes. Today, more than ever, Latin American cinema is recognizing itself in the stories of the black communities that were left out of all representation. Afro-Latino cinema is here, a category that represents more and more films on Afro-themes in the Hispanic-American world. However, a limited number of these films are actually made by Afro-descendant filmmakers, being white filmmakers those who speak to us about these identities that remained invisible until very recently.

– Aldemar Matías
– Tony Romero
– Laura Asprilla

Moderator: Wendy Espinal


Aldemar Matías

Aldemar Matias was born in Manaus (Brazil) in 1985. He studied Documentary Filmmaking at EICTV (Cuba). He is currently living in Barcelona and
working as a guest artist at the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art. Parente, his first short film, explores the Yanomami tribe’s first contact
with HIV tests in the Amazon. El Enemigo, his latest short documentary shot in Cuba, was premiered at Visions du Réel in 2015. It was later selected
for Dok Leipzig, True/False and Biarritz Latin American Film Festival, among others, and received awards at DocumentaMadrid and San Sebastián. La
Arrancada, filmed in spring 2018 in Havana, is his first feature film.

Tony Romero

Tony Romero, born in Havana, Cuba and living in Spain since 1996, is a director, producer and scriptwriter, trained in the Cuban film school and with more than twenty years dedicated to film and television, has worked with production companies in Cuba, Haiti, Japan and Spain, developing an extensive work, which alternates with his teaching work in the university environment. He has given courses, workshops, conferences and presented his work in educational, cinematographic and socio-cultural spaces in Spain, Morocco, Equatorial Guinea and the USA, among others. A member of the Cuban Union of Writers and Artists (UNEAC) and the General Society of Authors and Editors (SGAE), he has been working for the production company TR Movies for over twenty years as a director, producer and screenwriter. He has developed a prolific career between fiction and documentary, including such socially relevant documentaries as: “Foto de familia” (2001), “Llegar al cielo” (2006), or “Gente de pelo duro” (2015).

Wendy Espinal

Dominican filmmaker and cultural manager. She bases her work on research, process and meaning. She has worked on multiple projects, most notably the feature films “Cocote” (N.C. de los Santos), “Holly Beasts” (L.A. Guzmán & I. Cárdenas), “Petra” (J. Rosales), “El Rey de la Habana” (A. Villaronga), “El Cosmonauta” (N. Alcalá); as well as projects for relevant cultural institutions and events in the Dominican Republic, Europe and the United States. In her work as a documentary filmmaker, including “El Mundo Que Nos Rodea” (premiered at the International Festival of New Latin American Cinema – Havana 2019) and the audiovisual installation “Estado: Rural” (XXVI Eduardo León Jimenes Art Competition), she questions the visual and sound imagery of the Dominican rural landscape. She is currently researching and developing her next documentary project in which she proposes a reflection on the Dominican-Haitian conflict through landscape, territory and memory.

Laura Asprilla

Social Communicator and Journalist, with studies in Technology in Audiovisual and Multimedia Production. Producer of the series “Somos como Somos” for Canal Capital (Colombia). She made a documentary about the knowledge of women in the south of France and Spain.She is one of the 5 Cimarronas of Cimarrón Producciones, an audiovisual production company of black women. She is currently part of the team and curatorship for the Afro cinema exhibition in Bogotá in alliance with Wi-da Monikongo.

Teresa Toledo

Degree in History from the University of Havana. She is a specialist in Latin American cinema, cultural management and film programming. Between 1963 and 1992 she worked at the Cuban Institute of Cinema Art and Industry (ICAIC). She held various positions of responsibility at the International Festival of New Latin American Cinema in Havana during its first thirteen editions. In 1995 and 1996 she was Artistic Director of the Rencontres Cinémas d’Amérique Latine (Toulouse, France). In 2010 and 2011 she was the curator of the First Cut section at Ventana Sur, an event organized by the INCAA of Argentina and the Marché du Film of Cannes. In 2017 she was co-curator of the Iberoamerican Film Festival in the framework of Lisbon, the Iberoamerican Cultural Capital. In 2018, she was the coordinator and moderator of the international seminar organized by the Havana Festival, “Tomás Gutiérrez-Alea, between the Stories of the Revolution and Guantanamera”, on the occasion of the filmmaker’s 90th birthday. She has published various texts on Latin American cinema and has edited and directed several publications for the San Sebastian Film Festival (Made in Spanish and Horizontes Latinos). Since 2016 he has been a judge for the Platinum Awards for Latin American Cinema organised by EGEDA and FIPCA. She has lived in Spain since 1993 and has been the Specialist in Cinema at the Casa de América in Madrid since 1996.


For any questions about the Tree of Words, contact us here: produccion2@fcat.es