By Ratha Lehall
On Monday 28 July, the Frontline Club hosted the preview screening of One Rogue Reporter, which was followed by a Q&A with director Rich Peppiatt, chaired by professor of television journalism at City University, Stewart Purvis.
Peppiatt was a tabloid journalist with the Daily Star, who publicly resigned in 2011. His resignation letter was printed in The Guardian, and honestly, and hilariously, outlined the list of reasons for his resignation, providing an insider’s account of life a tabloid newspaper. Since then, Peppiatt has continued to lay bare the truth about the ethically questionable methods of journalism used by the tabloids, and has used comedy to spread his stories. The film uses the Leveson Enquiry as a back drop to Peppiatt‘s various attempts to turn the tables on the UK’s most powerful newspaper bosses. One Rogue Reporter began as a comedy stage show, and gradually developed into a film. The film was completely self-funded by Peppiatt and his partner Tom Jefferson.
Turkey’s prime minister Racep Tayyip Erdogan will win next month’s presidential elections and become the country’s first directly elected president, according to a panel of experts assembled at the Frontline Club on 22 July 2014.
The Frontline Club event was chaired by Murat Nisancioglu, the head of Turkish Service at BBC Global News and brought together Alexander Christie-Miller, an Istanbul-based freelance journalist and Turkey correspondent for Newsweek, The Times and Christian Science Monitor; Fadi Hakura, associate fellow at Chatham House; Sir David Reddaway, British ambassador to Turkey between 2009 and January 2014; and Karabekir Akkoyunlu, who recently completed a PhD about political change in Iran and Turkey at LSE.
The consensus of the panel was that Erdogan would win a convincing victory at the coming polls.
By Ratha Lehall
On Monday 14 July, the Frontline Club hosted a screening of Seeds of Hope, a documentary which focuses on the effect of rape in Eastern Congo, where it has become a widely used weapon of war. The film centres around one woman, Masika, who is herself a victim of rape, and her determination to provide a centre for recovery and sanctuary for other women who have been raped, as well as taking in many children who have either been orphaned or rejected due to their violent origins.
“Where can I go to have a decent life?”
On Friday 11 June, Shorts at the Frontline Club took viewers on a cinematic journey that showcased the different ways used to document the world we live in.
The theme: migration and the phases of migration.
Two at the Border by Tuna Kaptan and Felicitas Sonvilla shone a light onto the lives Ali and Nasser. The two friends attempt to make ends meet by helping refugees to the Turkish-Greek border. Ali is Palestinian, traumatised by the violence he has witnessed. “Problems, problems everywhere,” he repeats with bloodshot eyes.
“Where can I go to have a decent live?” Ali asks the universe.
As if replying to Ali, Europe’s response to the rising number of refugees has been increased militarisation of the Greece–Turkey border. The film is dedicated to Naser, who attempted to smuggle himself into Greece. The boat he was on allegedly capsized in the Aegean Sea, and he has been missing ever since.
“The Journey towards you Lord, is life. To set off is to die a little.” (The Migrants’ Prayer)
On Monday 7 July 2014, the Frontline Club screened Who is Dayani Cristal? The film follows actor Gael García Bernal as he retraced the footsteps of a Honduran man found dead in the Arizonan desert – one of the thousands of lives snuffed out by the lure of the American Dream.
Director and cinematographer Marc Silver joined us for the Q&A.
By Lisa Dupuy
Where there are borders, attempts will likely be made to cross them in the hope of reaching greener pastures. But the individuals who try are not necessarily welcomed by those who live on the other side. Fences, walls and legislation are thrown up to at least regulate the influx of migrants. And in some cases, borders are made dangerous.
By Antonia Roupell
On Thursday 26 June an audience collected at the Frontline Club to watch Martin Scorsese and his longtime documentary collaborator David Tedeschi’s latest film: The 50 Year Argument. This multi-layered documentary offered a unique historical retrospective over the last 50 years through the eyes of the iconic New York Review of Books. The film interweaves monumental historical events with critical analysis of their consequences by some of the Review‘s contributors, through interviews and unique archival footage. The screening was in partnership with the award-winning arts programme BBC Arena and concluded in a Q&A with its series editor Anthony Wall, also the film’s executive producer.
A compelling Frontline Club event on Wednesday 25 June showcased film and photographic work from across the globe that revealed both the depth of suffering and the strength of human spirit in some of the world’s most devastating internal conflicts.
Featured at the event was a series of photographs from Tim Freccia in South Sudan, Alvaro Ybarra Zavala in Venezuela, Eman Mohammed in Gaza and Daniel Berehulak in Afghanistan, curated by multimedia photojournalist and filmmaker John D McHugh.
The event culminated in a screening of Ground Zero Syria, a dramatic film by Robert King featuring unprecedented footage of the brutal conflict in Syria, and an impassioned interview with King by The Times journalist Anthony Loyd that offered some chilling conclusions about the future of the conflict.
By Allendria Brunjes
A six-person panel, experienced with an array of whistleblowing cases, came together at the Frontline Club on Tuesday 17 June for the Amnesty International event, Protecting Whistleblowers.
Speaking to a sold out room, the panel – which included lawyers, a journalist and a whistleblower – discussed issues of truth, access to information and disseminating information, integrating their own experiences into the talk. All agreed that whistleblowers need to be protected when working in the interests of the people.
Return to Homs follows two close friends and young revolutionaries as their beloved city is taken over by the army. Basset is a local football star, the goalkeeper for the Syrian national team who also became an iconic singer in the revolution, and Ossama is a media activist and pacifist.
The intimate portrait shows how they transform from peaceful protestors by August 2011 into rebel insurgents in August 2013 as Homs is turned into a bombed-out ghost town. The film directed by Talal Derki was previewed at the Frontline Club on Friday 13 June and a Q&A with producer Orwa Nyrabia via Skype followed.
In the aftermath of victory for Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in recent presidential elections, Egypt’s government faces a huge challenge to unite a fragmented society behind difficult economic reforms, agreed a panel of experts speaking at the Frontline Club on 10 June 2014, chaired by Rasha Qandeel, presenter and journalist at BBC Arabic.
By Elliott Goat
The Frontline Club’s First Wednesdays kicked off a discussion on the news story that has dominated all others over the past month: Boko Haram and the hunt for Nigeria’s missing schoolgirls. Channel 4 News’ foreign affairs correspondent Jonathan Miller, chairing the evening’s discussion, began by asking who are Boko Haram? What are their ultimate objectives? How have they evolved to take centre stage in the global media spotlight?