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By Rita A. Fucillo / September 28, 12:00 AM
Q&A with GlobeDocs Film Festival's Lisa Viola


Start the popcorn maker and fluff the couch cushions—the sixth annual GlobeDocs Film Festival begins online on October 1. Enjoy 12 days of the some of the world’s most scintillating, provocative documentaries from filmmakers across the world. Remember to join the post-film dialogues with Boston Globe journalists for in-depth commentary and analyses of the films and their journeys to the screen. 

Panorama asked GlobeDocs’s director of programming Lisa Viola to set the stage.

What are some of the benefits of the festival being virtual this year?
As a virtual festival, GlobeDocs is now accessible to a much wider audience because the films are available to stream across the country for the first time. We were able to extend the dates of the festival and increase the number of films, which also allows for an enhanced viewing experience.

How are the films selected?
Films are selected through a months-long process of screening submitted films as well as films that are sought after by our selection committee. A significant number of films are pre-screened in order to create a diverse program of new feature and short documentaries from around the world. 

Please share with Panorama’s readers an overview of this year's signature films and how their impact is heightened by the current political state of the nation. 
This year’s films feel more relevant than ever as they explore many pressing issues surrounding human rights (Nasrin), social justice (Aggie), gun control (Us Kids), inherent bias in technology (Coded Bias), women’s rights (9to5: The Story of a Movement), health care workers (In Case of Emergency), endangered species (Entangled and Fish & Men) and climate change (I Am Greta) at a time when the world is facing so many challenges. Closer to home, we are especially delighted to include local and legendary documentarian Frederick Wiseman’s new film City Hall, which observes Boston’s government at work. 

Now more than ever, the art of storytelling is critically important. What are the film directors and creators looking for in the post-film dialogues?
The post-film conversations allow the filmmakers to give additional background and context, and to describe their experiences in the making of their films. As moderators, Globe journalists are poised to ask thoughtful questions about why and how the subjects were chosen and what it took for the films to be crafted.

The sixth annual GlobeDocs Film Festival runs October 1–12. Visit globedocs2020.eventive.org for tickets, screening times and more information.

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