Cyprus Mail

Local documentary wins at Red Cross International Film Festival

Ray Woolley diving at 95

Documentary film Life begins at 90 won Best Short Documentary at the prestigious Red Cross International Film Festival, held in Varna, Bulgaria last week.

It was filmed and produced in Cyprus and features 95-year-old Ray Woolley, a WWII veteran, his healthy approach to ageing, passion for diving and inspirational approach to life.

The documentary about the inspiring nonagenarian who lives in Limassol was selected from thousands of entries from all over the world. More than 3,200 films were submitted from 120 countries.

The 18th International Festival of Red Cross and Health Films followed the theme Aggression – Humanity – Cinema.

“We are delighted with this award as is Ray. It is very meaningful for us as this festival is very special and promotes philanthropic, humanitarianism and inclusive issues,” a spokesman for production company In Focus Films told the Cyprus Mail.

The festival is held every two years and is organised by the Bulgarian Red Cross, under the auspices of the Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the World Health Organisation and UNESCO. The motto of the festival is: “By humanism to peace and friendship” and it has growing importance as a powerful tool for the dissemination of humanitarian and cultural values through cinema.

Ray will celebrate his 96th birthday in August, and aims to break his world record again, as the world’s oldest scuba diver, which he first won in 2017, before breaking it in 2018.

“I am really pleased that people enjoyed my film and that it inspired them in some way. We all need to get out of our chairs and keep moving. Next stop is America,” he told the Cyprus Mail.

Life begins at 90 premiered at the 13th Cyprus International film festival where it was awarded Best Cinematography in a feature documentary.


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