Christoph Silber, an acclaimed screenwriter and adjunct film and television professor at La Sierra University, was among television’s top talent to receive a coveted International Emmy last week. His film was selected from a field of only four nominees worldwide in the “TV Movie/Mini Series” category. Many of Riverside’s universities showcase great talent in the area of Art and Innovation. Silber’s achievement reflects Riverside’s commitment to lifelong learning and uses film as his artistic medium.
In between television projects, Silber teaches two television screenwriting and writing classes each quarter at La Sierra University, his first experience with regular classroom instruction. He arrived in 2012 at the behest of the program’s director and professor Rodney Vance. The two met last year at the SonScreen Film Festival in Simi Valley where Silber conducted a question-and-answer session with students.The International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences presented two special awards and 10 Emmy statues during the 41st International Emmy Awards gala in New York City on Nov. 25. In total winners represented six countries – Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, South Korea and the United Kingdom. The event was attended by more than 1,000 international television professionals and was hosted by John Oliver.
The 10 awards for programs and performances included an Emmy for “A Day for a Miracle,” an Austrian-German television movie that aired in Austria and Germany earlier this year to a record audience. Drawn from real-life events first portrayed in “The New Yorker” magazine, the story relays the trauma experienced by a Christian farm couple who discover their four-year-old daughter floating in an icy pond. Although deemed clinically dead by medical personnel, a young, inexperienced doctor decides in the face of strong opposition and terrible odds to try to save her.
Nearly 75 percent of the movie takes place in the hospital operating room, capturing in detail the heroic efforts of the physician as he pulls out all the stops under extreme stress to revive the child during a short window of time in which such recovery might be possible.
“It’s a story of this doctor who makes that call and says, ‘I’m not going to give up on this girl.’ He hangs in there,” Silber said.
The story attracted Silber because it addresses “this huge moral question, about how far can we interfere with life, do miracles exist, or can we, through our own resilience for hope, make something miraculous happen by not letting go,” he said. “We’re leaving it up to the viewer to decide.”