Oppenheimer: 'When we discriminate, we lose our own humanity'

Internationally acclaimed film director Joshua Oppenheimer will be the opinion leader at the 3rd Sabancı Foundation Short Film Competition.

The theme of this year's competition will be "Discrimination."

Oppenheimer and his work will inspire other filmmakers in the competition. He has won many awards at different film festivals around the world. He stands out with his short movies that tell the stories of people who have faced discrimination.

Speaking about this year's theme, Oppenheimer said: "Discrimination is inhuman in all circumstances. When we discriminate, we lose our own humanity. We close our hearts to more vulnerable groups. We think and boast that we know the others, that we are superior. This feeds our pride but also makes us insensitive to other people. It destroys our only ability to empathize, our only quality that makes us unique and human. When we discriminate, we become ugly shadows of what we think we are and turn into sarcastic and cruel beings. We need to resist and stand up wherever discrimination rises, including our own thoughts. We should not let discrimination capture our thoughts; we need to act with an endless understanding."

Oppenheimer is a graduate of Harvard University. He has won many awards including the Golden Hugo award at the Chicago International Film for his film "The Entire History of the Louisiana Purchase." His first feature-length documentary "The Act of Killing" won 72 international awards including the Best Documentary from the European Film Academy, BAFTA, Asia Pacific Film, Berlin International Film Festival Audience and Ecumenical Jury Award and was nominated in the Best Documentary category at the 86th Academy Awards.

"The Look of Silence" premiered at the 71st Venice Film Festival in the competition category and won five awards including the Grand Jury Prize, FIPRESCI Award and the FEDORA Prize.

At the 88th Academy Awards, it was nominated for the Best Documentary award. It won the Best Documentary Film award at the Busan International Film Festival, Copenhagen Documentary Films Prize and Berlin International Film Festival Peace Film Award.

In 2016, he was a jury member at the Venice Film Festival and he continues to work as the artistic director at the Westminster University Documentary and Experimental Film Center in London.

Applications until Nov. 16

The last date of submission for the 3rd Sabancı Foundation Short Film Competition will be Nov. 16.

The short films should be five minutes in length and revolve around the issue of discrimination. The works will be judged, first by the preliminary jury who will select 10 to 15 works that will be judged by a final jury.

The winner will be awarded TL 15,000 ($2,212), while the runner-up and the third place winners will win TL 10,000 and TL 5,000, respectively.

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