Nashen Moodley joins the Sydney Film Festival

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Nashen Moodley has been involved with development and management of Durban International Film Festival programmes since 2001.

Announcing Moodley's new appointment, Peter Rorvik, director of the CCA and the Durban International Film Festival, said, “Nashen has established a reputation as an astute and world-respected film programmer, and whilst his departure is a great loss to DIFF, it is a big step into the international arena, and deserved recognition of his skills. His expertise and understanding of film industry processes are an asset to any organisation, and the Centre for Creative Arts UKZN and DIFF congratulate him. We  will miss him and will certainly maintain our relationship with him.”

Sydney Film Festival chairman Chris Freeland said: “Nashen Moodley joins Sydney Film Festival at a time of great strength and growth. His strong international film festival connections and curatorial flair ensure that Sydney will continue to be presented the best films and filmmakers from around the world; whilst highlighting the great films and talent of the Australian film industry.”

Nashen said: “Prior to joining DIFF, I was a regular attendee and the festival has been extremely important for me in my cinematic education. I have so enjoyed these past 11 years and, as I embark on this exciting new challenge, I am happy that DIFF is in a position of great strength and opportunity. It has been a great privilege and pleasure for me to work with Peter Rorvik and the dedicated Centre For Creative Arts team, and I wish them all the very best for the future. My intention is to remain closely connected to African cinema and filmmakers and I will remain a friend and keen supporter of DIFF.”

Moodley will take up his new position in January. The Sydney Film Festival takes place from 6 to 17 June while the Durban International Film Festival runs from 19 to 29 July 2012.

Janet van Eeden asked Nashen Moodley a few rapid-fire questions this week:

Nashen, you’re leaving DIFF for Sydney soon. Congratulations! Were you headhunted or did you apply for the position? What exactly is your position with the Sydney Film Festival?

Thank you. An international recruitment campaign was conducted and I was contacted and asked to apply for the post. The position is Director of the Sydney Film Festival, and I will be responsible for the artistic vision of the festival, among other things.

How long have you been at DIFF and what was your role there?

I started at DIFF in 2001, on a part-time basis, and moved full-time to the Centre for Creative Arts in 2004. I was essentially in charge of the programming of the festival and was involved in much of the logistics.

What was the highlight of your time at DIFF?

Certainly meeting so many filmmakers and introducing films by new filmmakers to the Durban audience. Also, we presented the world premieres of so many important South African films in my time at the festival, and that was very exciting. I have made so many friends, all over the world, through my work with DIFF and that’s a great benefit.

What was the most difficult time for you at DIFF?

Each day at each festival comes with a set of challenges, and while they seem very difficult at the time, after the festival they no longer seems like such a big deal. I think we’ve done well to identify problems and make improvements with each edition and find ourselves in a very good place at the moment.

What will you miss most about being in Durban?

The people I love.

What do you think Sydney will offer you that DIFF couldn’t?

I don’t really look at it that way. Both festivals have a lot to offer, as do both cities. I really look forward to the new challenge and to programming for a new audience.

Do you see yourself ever coming back to DIFF?

Of course. I hope to be back at the next edition to watch films.

Any last thoughts on the move?

I hope it goes smoothly!   

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