We're thrilled to congratulate the teams behind The End of the Line and Burma VJ on picking up awards at the first ever Puma Creative Impact Awards.
The new award has been introduced to champion films that have made “a significant impact on society” and to "inspire more people to make films that make a difference", added Rupert Murray, director of The End of the Line.
Hosted by Jon Snow, the London ceremony also saw Burma VJ receive an unpredicted special commendation from the jury. Snow told BBC News that as a documentary, The End of The Line has "completely transformed the way a very large number of people think about fish".
Among the panellists selecting winners were US film-maker Morgan Spurlock, Christian Aid director Loretta Minghella and Queen Noor of Jordan.
Read more about thes two very important films below and if you want to bring these and many other impactful docs to your community, visit www.popupcinema.net
The End of the Line
Filmed over two years, The End of the Line follows the investigative reporter Charles Clover as he confronts politicians and celebrity restaurateurs, who exhibit little regard for the damage they are doing to the oceans. The End of the Line is a wake-up call to the world on the issue of sustainable fishing.
The End of the Line with support from Greenpeace, Brit Doc and Waitrose premiered on World Oceans Day – Monday 8th June 2010, simultaneously on 46 screens across the UK and had a huge impact. After seeing the film household names changed their practices and switched to sustainable sources of fish. In the same week that the film was released, Marks and Spencer announced it was switching all of its canned tuna to pole-and-line caught skipjack, the most plentiful tuna species, while its fresh tuna will be line-caught yellowfin. Prêt A Manger announced a total change in its fish buying policy after founder Julian Metcalfe saw the film at a preview screening and then arranged a private screening for senior management. The company press released the news on the day the film opened. In March 2010, Whiskas & Sheba became the first cat foods to source fish from Marine Stewardship Council certified products, again directly crediting the power of the film. The End of the Line and the issues within it secured significant support from celebrity advocates including Prince Charles, Greta Scacchi, Emilia Fox, Terry Gilliam, Richard E Grant, Stephen Fry and Sarah Brown among others.Gordon Ramsay, Angela Hartnett, Joel Robuchon, Giorgio Locatelli and Tom Aikens all banned bluefin from their restaurants.
Jamie Oliver who was shown in the film recommending bluefin tuna on his TV show, not only stopped serving the fish in his restaurants and removed it from his recipe books, and he was part of a Channel 4 season in January 2011 called The Big Fish Fight which directly assessed sustainability alongside Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Heston Blumenthal and Gordon Ramsay. Carluccio’s announced they would no longer serve net-caught fish.
Burma VJ delves into the world of Burma’s video journalists, who insist on keeping up the flow of news from their closed country despite risking torture and life in jail. The film was nomianted for the Best Documentary (Feature) Oscar and won the prize for the Best Cinema Documentary at the Grierson Awards. Using the stories and footage of these VJ's, Burma VJ exposed the atrocities taking place under the Military regime in Burma.
The film saw the Co-operative and Dogwoof unite for the release, with a nationwide Saffron Premiere of Burma VJ across 40 cinemas, which were live satellite-linked to BAFTA in London. The film was introduced by Dame Vivienne Westwood and followed by a Q&A with the director and one of the Burmese Video Journalist's for Democratic Voice of Burma. After the film a special message was broadcast from Richard Gere, thanking everyone for attending, and thanking the filmmakers for the brave piece of cinema just witnessed.
Burma VJ also became the first film to be shown at 10 Downing Street, hosted by Sarah Brown. The event raised awareness for the growing global campaign – 64 Words for Aung San Suu Kyi – created by Burma Campaign UK, which put pressure on Burma’s Military regime to release Aung San Suu Kyi before the elections. Director Østergaard was present at No.10 Downing Street and participated in a discussion led by Ivan Lewis, Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, afterwards.
Aung San Suu Kyi was released from house arrest late last year and since the films release 3 of the Burma VJs have successfully seeked asylum in the UK.