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World’s largest wildlife and environmental film festival in Sri Lanka

(February 07, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Nine environmental filmmakers from the UK will be coming to India and Sri Lanka in February as part of the British Council organised Wildscreen Festival. The festival will also see screenings of wildlife and environmental films from across the world, some of them winners of the Panda Awards, nicknamed the green OSCARS®.

The Wildscreen Festival was founded by Sir Peter Scott in 1982 and has been organised every alternate year for the past 25 years. It is the world’s largest and most prestigious wildlife and environmental film festival. Held in Bristol, the world’s centre for wildlife filmmaking, it attracts hundreds of delegates from around the globe who work in film, television and the press, as well as those actively involved in working to conserve the environment.

Harriet Nimmo, Wildscreen’s Chief Executive said, "We are delighted to be returning to India to further develop our relationship with Indian audiences and filmmakers, whilst exploring new markets in Sri Lanka. These countries are key destinations because they are developing fast, with eco-systems which are under threat from rapid economic development and climate change. The films being screened as part of this year’s Festival have an environmental focus, including engaging stories about climate change - and aim to inspire and enthuse those interested in preserving and protecting India’s and Sri Lanka’s precious biodiversity."

The Festival is coming to Sri Lanka for the first time in February 2009 and will visit Colombo from 12-13 February. The two day programme held at the British Council Colombo will include master classes by three UK filmmakers on various aspects of making and distributing factual films, such as the role of films in Environmental Conservation, scriptwriting and managing a film production. Award winning films on climate change and wildlife will be screened during the Festival. They will be joined by four Sri Lankan TV/film professionals who will share their own experiences in documentary film making and TV programme production.

On 14 February 2009, TVE Asia Pacific will present a selection of films on environment and sustainable development drawn from their global catalogue, which includes some Sri Lankan and South Asian titles. The Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources and the National Science Foundation will also be screening local films related to the environment during the event.

Admission to film screenings and master classes is free and open to the public. Participation in master classes requires prior registration. To register and for details visit http://www.britishcouncil.org/srilanka

British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. Our purpose is to build engagement and trust for the UK through the exchange of knowledge and ideas between people worldwide. The British Council is active in 109 countries and 227 towns and cities worldwide. We celebrate 60 years of cultural relations in Sri Lanka in 2009.

http://www.britishcouncil.org/srilanka

Wildscreen is a charity registered in Bristol in 1982. We use wildlife imagery to promote and encourage conservation. Wildscreen is unique; by using photographs and film to illustrate the beauty of the natural world we aim to inspire and enthuse a whole new generation of conservationists. Films and photographs are an emotive, powerful and effective means of building environmental awareness, helping to ignite the first spark of interest in natural history and stimulating a continuing passion for the wonders of life on Earth. With growing extinction rates, they also provide an important historical record of the planet’s endangered plants and animals.

www.wildscreen.org.uk

TVE Asia Pacific is a Colombo-based, regionally operating media foundation that communicates for sustainable development through television, video and the web. It is both a producer and distributor of educational video films for broadcast, civil society and educational uses across the Asia Pacific region.

http://www.tveap.org

-Sri Lanka Guardian

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