Al Jazeera's Witness wins prestigious award for Sudan documentary

Sudan's Forgotten Films follows the journey of two men as they attempt to rescue the African nation's film archive.

    The film follows the journey of two Sudanese men as they work to rescue the African nation's film archive [Al Jazeera]
    The film follows the journey of two Sudanese men as they work to rescue the African nation's film archive [Al Jazeera]

    Al Jazeera's flagship programme, Witness, has won the prestigious Arts and Culture Story of the Year Award for its documentary Sudan's Forgotten Films.

    Independent filmmakers Suhaib Gasmelbari and Katharina Von Schroeder received the honour at the Foreign Press Association Media Awards ceremony in London on November 26.

    The film, which follows the journey of two men as they attempt to save Sudan's film archive of 13,000 films - one of the biggest in Africa - was received with overwhelming acclaim upon release in the African nation and sparked renewed interesting in rescuing the country's cultural heritage.

    "The stand-out five-star film told a sweet and lyrical story providing a rare historical perspective," judges said about Sudan's Forgotten Films.

    Executive Producer Fiona Lawson-Baker said the award is a "credit to the excellent work of Al Jazeera's Witness team who are committed to independent filmmaking voices worldwide".

    "It's an honour to accept this award on behalf of the filmmakers and ultimately it is a tribute to the two main characters, Awad and Benjamin. You have done a beautiful job, Benjamin," said Lawson-Baker.

    Al Jazeera English was also nominated for an award in the TV News Story of the Year category for a story about the trafficking of Rohingya women and children by Charles Stratford.  

    Witness's Venezuela Smuggling Dreams and The Cut: Exploring FGM were both nominated in the Documentary of the Year Category.

    Celebrating its 130th anniversary, the Foreign Press Association have celebrated and supported great international journalism since 1888.

    It is the oldest association of foreign journalists in the world and has members from over 65 countries and 250 outlets. The FPA Media Awards are now in their 19th year.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera News