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Claus Mueller

Claus Mueller is a Film Festival Ambassador to

He is based in New York where he covers the festival scene.


Socially Relevant Film Festival, New York – Preview

Devoted to film as a medium to increase our consciousness about social issues the festival will hold its 4th edition from March 13-16 offering films, panels and receptions. Even though it is a relatively small specialized niche festival about 500 production were submitted including new feature films, documentaries and shorts, most of which had not been shown before in New York or the United States.   In the feature film section six films were selected premiering here including Two Girls (India, 2016), 600 Euros(France 2016), Destiny (China, 2016), Prophesy (Netherlands / Bhutan, 2016), Split (USA 2016) and for the retrospective spotlight screening Charlie Chaplin’s The Great Dictator (USA, 1940). The documentary section has 12 entries of which most will be shown in New York for the first time. There are six US productions with the remainder including co-productions originating in the Netherlands, Israel, Armenia, Mexico and the United Kingdom. The program presents 29 shorts. Six productions are world premieres and 18 have not been screened before in New York or the United States.  The opening film on Tuesday March 14 at 7:30 PM is the Dutch documentary The Chocolate Case by Benthe Former about three journalists investigating  child labor and setting up the first slave-free chocolate bar production. The festival closes on Saturday March 18 at 9:15 PM presenting Deborah Kantmeier’s The Split, a feature film of the story of a young actress working as a stripper who becomes obsessed with a mask maker sacrificing parts of her identity in order to win his love.

Open to film makers and festival goers are several panels, happy hour socials in the late afternoon, and the opening and closing receptions which require an invitation, though filmmakers can secure admission to the panel and workshop sessions.  On Tuesday 3/14 a smartphone filmmaking workshop is offered by Ching Juhl on learning how to make a short film not exceeding three minutes. From Wednesday to Friday a Virtual Reality and 360 films exhibit and showcase will be presented by Samsung and other companies with a VR panel on Friday  discussing the socially relevant use of the new technologies. On Wednesday evening a panel will introduce The Great Dictator film. Thursday offers throughout the day several workshops and panels. At the SAG/AFTRA office there will be a low budget film and production workshop, Excerpts from the Competition Finalist Scripts will be presented during the Script Reading Session followed by an afternoon panel on Violence Against Women with film makers from the Women Prayed and Preyed Upon short films and a topical evening panel on Refugees and Immigration with filmmakers from the refugees and immigration films. Two industry panels of the SVA SocDoc Film Campus are scheduled for Saturday morning and noon covering Funding Your Film Ideas and The Hazardous (Brave) Documentary respectively. Among the sponsors of the festival is the New York Consulate General of the Kingdom of Netherlands.


For more information  visit the festival website for details and locations:

Please note that RSVPs for the free workshops and panels are necessary.

Claus Mueller