As the only UK university, LJMU joined 13 European universities to participate in this year’s first European University Film Awards (EUFA).
This is a new initiative managed by the European Film Awards (EFA) and Filmfest Hamburg that involves students from a range universities acting as a jury for film awards. The objective is to involve a younger audience, to spread the “European idea” and to transport the spirit of European cinema to an audience of university students.
Lauren O’Bern, Level 5 Creative Writing and Film Studies student and Reader in Film Studies, Dr Lydia Papadimitriou experienced Hamburg during a moderated two-day deliberation to decide which of the 50 nominated films deserved to win. The student panel decided that Ken Loach's I, Daniel Blake should receive the accolade.
Commenting on her experience, Lauren said:
"Being selected to participate in the first-ever EUFA deliberation meeting as a member of the jury was an incredibly enriching experience. It not only gave me a greater appreciation of cinema as my chosen field of study, but also allowed me to build confidence in my own abilities and connect with people from a number of different countries, all of whom shared the same fierce passion for film as I do. To be in the beautiful city of Hamburg, debating five wonderful works of art in such an innovative way, was a unique experience that I will draw from in both my studies at LJMU and future career, as listening to the opinions of individuals from such different cultures and backgrounds to my own gave me invaluable insight into how cinema, particularly European, truly does transcend borders, nationalities, cultures, perspectives and the like."
Dr Papadimitriou added:
"It has been very exciting to be the only UK university to take part in the first European University Film Award. This has been an amazing opportunity for students to become familiar with some of the best contemporary films from Europe, to reflect on their form and ideals, and to feel culturally part of the broader European community - especially at such challenging times for Europe."