DIG 2020, a guide to the festival
“Fear” is the theme of the sixth edition of the international investigative journalism festival DIG to be held in Modena from October 8th to 11th, with four days of screenings, meetings, training sessions, exhibitions and other events.
Romanian director Alexander Nanau will chair DIG’s international jury, which will assign the annual DIG Awards that, for the first time this year, will also award the best investigative podcasts. Moreover, DIG will assign for the first time its Watchdog Award, conferred by the DIG board to those journalists who distinguished themselves in the defence of the quality and independence of journalism in the past 12 months.
The theme of the sixth edition of DIG Festival is “Age Of Fear”: the Covid-19 pandemic was the most powerful event of a dramatic year, marked also by recession, armed conflicts, migration crises, social injustices, tax scandals and climate emergencies.
DIG Festival 2020 will take place in four strategic locations in the historic centre of Modena: Cinema Astra, home to the screenings of the films in competition and extras; Ago Modena Fabbriche Culturali, which will host the DIG Academy and its eight training workshops; the Church of San Carlo, chosen for the opening night, for the DIG Pitch and for the main shows and concerts; and Laboratorio Aperto of Modena, which will host an exclusive art exhibition, a series of panels and round-tables and the two new VR and Podcast sections.
DIG Festival will officially open on October 8th in the Church of San Carlo with an exclusice lecture by Italian historian Sandro Portelli and a speech by the celebrated Italian actor Elio Germano. Later, at Cinema Astra, the President of the 2020 jury, Alexander Nanau, will present the Italian premiere of his movie “Colectiv” (2019), a powerful documentary on the strength of journalism and the corruption of power. The movie, that premiered last year at the Venice festival, was never distributed in Italy and is brought to DIG also thanks to the collaboration of Cineteca di Bologna.
In the following days of the festival, Cinema Astra will host all the screenings of the finalists of the 2020 DIG Awards, as well as a series of out-of-competition previews: “St. Louis Superman” by Sami Khan and Smriti Mundhra (Al Jazeera Witness) – nominated for the Oscar 2020 in the Best Documentary Short category – and “Italy’s Frontline: A Doctor’s Diary” by Sasha Joelle Achilli (BBC), among others.
DIG 2020 also joined forces with National Geographic, that will bring in Modena three exclusive out of competition screenings: “Sea of Shadows: sea traffickers”, produced by Leonardo Di Caprio; two preview episodes of the “Journey into the Black Market” series with Mariana van Zeller and Ron Howard’s “California: Heaven on Fire”. All screenings are held at Cinema Astra.
On Sunday afternoon, the special event “Covering an invisible enemy” will be dedicated to the journalistic treatment of the Covid-19 pandemic, with the screening of four powerful documentaries by Italian authors, for the first time in a cinema. These are “The Italian Doctor” by Francesca Tosarelli, “Italy’s Frontline: a Doctor’s Diary” by Sasha Joelle Achilli, “Italy Lockdown: Fase 1” by Sacha Biazzo and Carla Falzone and “Lodi Primo Soccorso” by Alberto Gottardo and Francesca Sironi. Authors and directors will discuss their work during the most severe months of the Italian lockdown.
At the same time, Laboratorio Aperto will host a dense program of events, free and open to all. Every afternoon, from 16.30 to 19.00, the venue will host a series of cultural events coordinated by Italian writer and journalists Christian Raimo. These events will be joined by exceptional speakers such as Franco “Bifo” Berardi, Sandro Portelli, Francesca Coin, Vanessa Roghi, Simone Pieranni, Leonardo Bianchi, Annalisa Camilli and Giovanni De Luna.
Three more “specialist” events will also take place at Laboratorio Aperto, dedicated to surveillance, security and migration issues. International speakers in journalism, media activism and academia, such as Gabriella Coleman, the leading scholar of the hacker world, Stefania Milan and Antonella Napolitano of Privacy International will join the panels.
Music and Arts are also well represented at DIG Festival 2020. Friday 9th, in the splendid Church of San Carlo, musician Vinicio Capossela will premiere an exclusive “silent” show, “Happy birthday Gianni !”, an evening of songs and words on journalism and truth, dedicated to the memory of prominent Italian journalist Gianni Mura. Sunday 11th the Church will instead host “Silence is so freakin ‘loud”, an exclusive “silent” concert by C’mon Tigre, one of the most celebrated Italian indie-experimental bands.
DIG Festival will also host an exhibition of artists Ericailcane, Bastardilla and Hitnes’ works dedicated to the Amazon, to be held at Laboratorio Aperto, curated by gallery D406.
Gianluigi Toccafondo, one of the finest Italian graphic designers, is the author of DIG Festival 2020 poster and graphic identity.
See the full program in English here: https://dig-awards.org/en/2020-programme/