Health for All Film Festival

In a recent announcement, the World Health Organization has reported that nearly 1200 entries have been recorded for the second edition of the Health for All Film Festival. The 1175 submissions spanning across no less than 110 countries have been highly lauded by WHO. It has been announced that about 40% of the submissions revolve around the ongoing virulent COVID pandemic. During these trying times, WHO is pleased to declare the inauguration of the Health for All Film Festival which provides ample opportunities to aspiring as well as professional film-makers to showcase their talent on a massive global platform. First launched in 2020, the Health for All Film Festival strives to nurture and encourage a whole new generation of video and film innovators centered around the topic of healthcare and wellbeing. WHO has taken the initiative to collaborate with independent passionate film-makers, NGOs, students and film schools, production companies as well as a plethora of communities to ensure that entries are diverse and creative.

Entries have been submitted from all across the world. Australia, India, Bangladesh, Canada, China, Brazil, Russia, USA, Spain, Mexico, Nigeria, Germany, France, Indonesia, Philippines, Turkey, Uganda, Switzerland, Iran, Argentina, South Africa, UK, Malaysia, Portugal, Kenya, and Italy are few of the 110 countries that have sent their submissions so far. WHO Director-General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has expressed his motivation behind the initiative, emphasizing the power of story-telling to inspire, build empathy as well as share problems that can be resolved by a collective effort. He has reiterated that WHO focuses on stories about the human condition and life experiences. WHO hopes to amplify the arc of people’s stories all across the world and achieve better healthcare with the Health for All Film Festival.

The entries can be anything ranging from short documentaries to fiction films of about 3-8 minutes or even animation films of about 1-5 minutes in length. The winners will be awarded three Grand Prix in May 2021. The categories, that are inherently aligned with WHO’s annual global goals for healthcare across the world, are as follows-

  • Universal health coverage (UHC): films and videos revolving around non-communicable diseases, innovative health services, mental health, major communicable diseases, and other miscellaneous UHC tales that are not a part of emergencies, per se;
  • Health Emergencies: films and videos centered around health-related emergencies, namely COVID or Ebola along with an additional focus on healthcare responses during humanitarian crises as well as conflict-ridden areas;
  • Better health and well-being: films and videos regarding social and environmental determinants of health, namely pollution, nutrition, sanitation as well as films and videos about health promotion and health education.

Additionally, WHO has declared three special awards for the following-

  • A student-produced video or film
  • A health-education related film or video focusing on the youth
  • A short video or film produced exclusively for social media forums

The jury has not yet been announced but reports suggest that it would feature numerous critically-acclaimed film-makers and musicians along with several experts affiliated with WHO. The jury would decide on a few entries and recommend the same to the WHO Director-General, upon whom rests the final call. Coming March, WHO would be announcing an initial batch of shortlisted entries, which will include 15 films in each category. Several critically acclaimed film-makers and eminent personalities have expressed their enthusiasm for the Festival, Richard Curtis (film director as well as writer, UK) and Wagner Moura (actor as well as film director, Brazil) being two of them. Every year, aspiring film-makers and artists await the Health for All Film Festival with much zeal and vigor and this year is no different.