More than 1,000 filmmakers from over 110 countries have submitted short films to the 3rd edition of the WHO “Health for All” Film Festival, on topics ranging from the trauma of war to living with COVID-19. Some 70 films have been selected for the shortlist, which will be judged by international actors and development leaders, after which the winners will be announced in mid-May 2022.
The large participation of patients, health workers, health activists, NGOs, students, public institutions, as well as professional filmmakers, demonstrates the potential of the Festival to contribute to health promotion and education in this field. Counting the short films received in 2022, almost 3,500 films have been registered since the Festival began in 2020, many of them shot specifically for the occasion.
«The success of the WHO “Health for All” Film Festival reflects the enormous interest in health and ensuring that people can achieve the highest levels of physical and mental well-being, as well as the increased awareness around the world of importance of it», pointed out the Director General of the WHO, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. «The wide diversity of topics covered in this year’s short films, and the high caliber of the judges, underscore the growing importance of the Festival as a platform for bringing urgent health-related issues to the attention of the public.».
The following distinguished professionals, artists and activists, joined by three senior WHO experts, make up the jury for this year’s Festival: Sharon Stone (actress, United States); Emilia Clarke (actress, UK); Mia Master (actress, Argentina); Anita Abada (producer, from Nigeria); Eddie Ndopu (UN SDG Advocate, South Africa) and the Dr Eckart von Hirschhausen (TV presenter, from Germany).
The 70 shortlisted films can be viewed online in six playlists, one for each of the competition’s three main categories: Universal Health Coverage, Health Emergencies and Better Health and Wellbeing, as well as three others on Rehabilitation, Health Innovation and mini-short films.
As a contribution to the theme of World Health Day 2022 (“Our planet, our health”), another playlist will be published at the end of March – out of competition – that will bring together short films from the three editions of the “Health for everyone”, as well as other productions of the WHO and other United Nations agencies.
The 2022 selection deals with a wide selection of health topics: the trauma of wars; non-communicable diseases, in particular mental health problems; disability; malaria; communicable diseases, including COVID-19 and HIV-AIDS; in addition to the environmental and social determinants of health, such as gender violence, road safety and pollution. Short films on the beneficial effects of sport and the arts on health have also been included in the selection.
The public is encouraged to choose one of the films, and to defend it and post comments on its story or its theme, before May 10, 2022. Comments can be posted on social media using the hashtag #Film4health or on the lists YouTube playlists available on the Festival website (link below), as well as on the WHO YouTube channel. Some of the public comments will be screened during the Film Festival’s virtual awards ceremony in mid-May.
In the coming weeks, the judges will view the shortlisted films and recommend the winners to the WHO Director-General, who is responsible for making the final decision. In mid-May, during the virtual awards ceremony, three “GRAND PRIZES” and four special prizes will be announced, followed by several online discussions with the winners and the jury.
For more details on the official selection, the composition of the jury and general information, visit https://www.who.int/en/initiatives/the-health-for-all-film-festival