Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Grierson Awards respond to my email about Shell sponsorship

I got a response from the Grierson Trustto my email about Oil Company sponsorship of the documenatry awards.

They say nothing about my concerns that Shell Oil paid out $15m last year after familes alleged Shell conspired with the military government to capture and hang environmental activists. Shell was also accused of a series of other alleged human rights violations, including working with the army to bring about killings and torture of Ogoni ­protesters.The company was alleged to have provided the Nigerian army with vehicles, patrol boats and ammunition, and to have helped plan raids and terror campaigns against villages.

The awards response is that 'Shell has a long and distinguished history of financing and preserving documentary film-making' and that 'Shell, as sponsors of one of 10 Grierson awards, have no influence over the jury's decision.'

Anyone got a documentary exposing Shell they can enter the awards?
Their full response is below

From: "Jane Callaghan"
Date: Tue, May 4, 2010 4:59 pm

Dear Mr O'Connor
Thank you for your enquiry regarding the sponsorship of Shell International. The
Grierson Trust is keen to build partnerships with organisations which have shown a
real commitment to the genre and who wish to continue supporting excellence in
film-making. Shell has a long and distinguished history of financing and preserving
documentary film-making and is amongst a number of partners with which the Grierson
Trust is proud to collaborate.

John Grierson was a champion of documentaries that sought to challenge our
perceptions of the world and he produced many such films with many different
collaborators. He was equally concerned with the artistic potential of the form -
he considered documentary film-making as an art in its own right. The Trust
believes that these two purposes of documentary - to sometimes speak unpalatable
truths to people and to create work of artistic value - are central to today's
Grierson awards. And the Trust has a long history of celebrating such films.

In keeping with those values the Trust accepts films on any subject, whatever the
point of view expressed. The criteria for submissions are simply that films have
made a significant contribution to the genre and demonstrate quality, integrity,
creativity and originality. And the only criterion for success is excellence in the
eyes of the independent and distinguished juries. Shell, as sponsors of one of 10
Grierson awards, have no influence over the jury's decision.

Regards

Jane

Jane Callaghan
General Manager
THE GRIERSON TRUST
Tel: +44 (0)1733 891878
Mob: +44 (0)7740 164560
Email: jane@griersontrust.org
Web: www.griersontrust.org
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