Bang the gong, crank up the siren, sound the alarm. This month, Doc Society declared a climate emergency with our colleagues from the cultural sector.
We are in a state of global climate crisis, already causing irreversible damage to our planet, its atmosphere, its inhabitants and our future. As a foundation supporting independent documentary filmmakers globally, Doc Society has a particular responsibility to tell the truth and to support the narratives and storytellers that can shift our culture and politics in a time of emergency. Respect to artist Banksy for his contribution to Extinction Rebellion’s protest site at Marble Arch in London.
For the past two years, we have been working to put the climate at the centre of all our practice. We have tried to think how we can adopt better internal process as a small creative organisation as well as put climate into consideration in all our programmatic work. This is a live account of how we are doing, including the Climate Story Lab which starts today, our Mothers of Invention podcast with Mary Robinson and divesting our bank accounts from fossil fuels. We also talk about where we would like to do better and we welcome your advice and suggestions at email@example.com
Doc Society are also signatories of the Culture Declares Emergency declaration along with leading theatre companies such as the Old Vic and the Royal Court and venues like the Roundhouse and pledge to encourage all our global friends & allies, filmmakers and cultural partners to get involved.
If there are other local or international organising initiatives we could get involved with, please let us know. We welcome all opportunities for collaboration.
And in the collaborative spirit, the Doc Soc team all pitched in to select the following tracks for this month’s playlist as a matter of urgency...
Step it Up - Stereo MC’s
Time is Ticking Out - The Cranberries
Pound the Alarm - Nicki Mina
There's No Going Back - Yuno
Hurry Up - Richie Valens
When It’s Gone It’s Gone - Bruce Cockburn
Emergency - Kool and the Gang
Urgent - Foreigner
In solidarity, determination and hope.
Team Doc Society
THE CLIMATE STORY LAB 2019: PROJECTS
This week team Doc Society are running a major Climate Story Lab in New York, with our partners at Exposure Labs.
Why? Because it is time for storytellers to unite divided publics with the truth of our present reality and with shared visions of a climate just future. The Climate Story Lab is bringing together experts & storytellers for five days of radical collaboration.
Storytellers need to learn from past successes and failures in climate narratives and connect deeply with colleagues in the climate justice movement, with indigenous leadership, with climate scientists, political & legal strategists, with faith leadership - everyone who has a passion and commitment in this cause. Together we will accelerate a selection of new storytelling projects that can reach and engage diverse audiences.
Following an extensive call for entries this spring, we are absolutely delighted to be working with the following artists representing 12 incredible non-fiction projects.
Raising Anya (feature doc)
Directed by John Fiege, Produced by Christopher Lucas, Walter Hull & Anita Grabowski
A teenage African dancer in Houston must draw on her community and her own resilience when she sets out to choreograph a performance about environmental justice and her experience with Hurricane Harvey.
Swampscapes (multiplatform project using VR)
Directed & Produced by Juan Carlos Zaldivar, Elizabeth Miller and Kim Grinfeder
SwampScapes is an immersive journey to remote regions of the Everglades that invites users to consider the complexity between humans and this extraordinary ecosystem in an era of severe climate changes.
Greta Vs Climate (feature doc)
Directed by Nathan Grossman, Produced by Cecilia Nessen and Fredrik Heinig
Greta starts a school strike for the climate. With determination she wants to show the adult world that if they don’t care about her future on earth, why should she care about her future in school? In just a few months her strike evolves into a global movement and Greta goes from being a quiet Swedish girl with Asperger's syndrome to a world famous activist. Film still above courtesy of filmmakers.
Drenched (podcast series)
Director Maeve McGoran, Producer Kate Stein, Co-host/reporter Gwen Thompkins
Drenched (working title) is a new multimedia project bringing together citizens who want to take the responsibility for saving our communities into our own hands. It’s a manual for living with sea level rise, for taking action to prevent further climate change, for forging connections between communities on the front lines, around the U. S. and all over the world.
Greener Pastures (feature doc)
Director Sam Mirpoorian, Producers Andrew Cohn + Sam Mirpoorian
American farmers are dealing with more economic hardship and more pressure than ever before; Globalization, mechanization, and climate change have left farmers at a dark crossroad. Greener Pastures is an immersive and intimate dive into the lives of four American families from fall to harvest, tracking the rise of suicide rates and growing mental health issues among Midwestern farmers.
Signal (doc series)
Director Kelly Nyks, Producer Tad Fettig
SIGNAL chronicles an outlier crew of Wall Street insiders as they investigate whether we are on the brink of the largest financial failure ever seen. Their relentless search for the signals of a climate-crash weaves the economics, politics and psychologies of markets with insights from the sharpest minds in climate.
Climate Woke (short form episodic series)
Director Jesús Iniguez & Producer Layel Camargo
Host and investigative enthusiast Layel Camargo, with the occasional co-host, uses satire, comedy, and critical hope to amplify the realities of those facing the brunt of the climate crisis and offer collective solutions for a more sustainable future. Film still above courtesy of filmmakers.
Think 100%: The Coolest Show On Climate Change (Short form episodic series / podcast)
Director Liz Havstad & Producer Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr.
Think 100% is a content and media platform from Hip Hop Caucus, that tells stories and reaches new audiences on climate change and just and sustainable solutions for our communities and planet. Think 100% delivers the coolest leaders on climate, powerful storytelling, and community-driven solutions.
Necessity: Oil, Water and Climate Resistance (Doc series / short form episodic)
Directors Jan Haaken, Samantha Praus, Producers Jasmine Eppelsheimer, Frann Michel, David Cress
In a climate emergency, is civil disobedience a necessity? Grounded in people and places at the heart of the climate crisis, NECESSITY traces the legal fight in Minnesota against the expansion of pipelines carrying toxic tar sands oil through critical waterways in North America.
Newtok (Short form)
Director Katie Basile, Producers Patrick White & Paul Charles (Newtok Village Council)
As the climate warms, the West Coast of Alaska is eroding away, taking whole communities with it. When a storm hits the remote Alaska Native (Yup’ik) village of Newtok, Albertina Charles is terrified of flooding and the encroaching river bank. She and her son, Bosco, share their anxiety and grief over the loss of their home and their plans for the future. Our story highlights the grassroots effort by the community of Newtok to move to safety while maintaining geographical roots and a subsistence way of life. Film still above courtesy of filmmakers.
Breathe (Mixed Reality)
Made by Diego Galafassi, Lisa Holmqvist, Jesper Kurlandsky & Jess Engel (SWE)
We live in an ocean of air. When air first filled your lungs, everything changed. Without air, birds would plummet from the sky, plants would wither and we humans would suffocate. As we breathe in and out, air mingles with our bodily tissues, filling the lungs and oxygenating the blood. Air knows no borders. BREATHE is a mixed-reality application that uses body movement, gesture and breath to immerse participants in the story of air.
Meat the Future (Feature Doc)
Written, Directed, Produced by Liz Marshall; Production Manager & Impact Co-Producer Jessica Jennings; Executive Producer Janice Dawe; Consulting Executive Producer Chris Hegedus.
Reinventing meat is a tipping point that could change the world. Revealing challenges and breakthroughs and posing a myriad of questions about the future, this urgent and timely character-driven documentary explores the advent of real meat without the need to raise and slaughter animals.
To learn more about these projects go to https://docsociety.org/climate-story-lab/
To join in future editions of the Climate Lab please keep an eye on our newsletter.
For this adventure, Doc Society and Exposure Labs joined forces with our friends Hartley Media Initiative at Auburn Seminary, David and Linda Cornfield, Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Kendeda Fund, Fledgling Fund, Ford Foundation, The JPB Foundation, EarthX and Sundance Institute, to host this first edition in New York City between 15 - 18 July 2019. We are grateful for the rapid response and agility of our partners in
With plans afoot for a second US Lab and a UK / European edition in early 2020, please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in partnering on our future climate work. It is all hands on deck.
GET READY: BFI DOC SOCIETY FUND OPENING IN AUGUST
We are excited to announce a brand new round of funding for British documentary features. The fund will be opening on Thursday 1st August so keep an eye out for announcements and key application information. The deadline for this round will be noon on Tuesday 3rd September 2019.
We encourage you to get ahead of the deadline by checking out the guidelines and cultural test now at www.docsociety.org/bfi-doc
We also invite all potential applicants to join a webinar with the BFI Doc Society team for any burning questions you may have about the fund. This will take place on Thursday 1st August from 1pm - 2pm right after the fund has opened. You can sign up to take part in the webinar now on Eventbrite.
BFI Doc Society Production Manager Hannah Bush Bailey will be heading over to Exeter on Tuesday 16th July to meet filmmakers and talk doc funding and support at Filmmakers Lab. Check it out here: https://filmmakerslab.co.uk/sessions/
GOOD PITCH NEWS
Good Pitch Beirut بالعربي call for entries
The Good Pitch Beirut team are looking for films that tackle national or global issues covering all aspects of human rights, equality, social justice, environment. Read all about Good Pitch Beirut and how to submit a project here.
Good Pitch بالعربي brings together documentary filmmakers with foundations, NGOs, campaigners, philanthropists, policymakers, brands and media around leading social and environmental issues - to forge coalitions and campaigns that are good for all the parties involved reflecting a real impact on society. Over a year, the selected filmmaking teams will receive sustained mentorship, professional campaign development and regular workshops, culminating in the "Live Event" in 2020 where they will pitch their project to a room full of ideal impact partners.
فتح باب تقديم الأفلام الوثائقية
يمرّ عالمنا العربي بتغيّرات مفصلية تمتد على مساحات بلادنا، تغيّرات تشبه بتنوعها ثقافاتنا المختلطة وآمالنا بغدٍ افضل. من هنا، تكبر مسؤولية صناع الأفلام الوثائقية للمساعدة بإحداث التغيير المرجو والتأثير الإيجابي على مجتمعاتنا ومستقبلها.
يهدف Good Pitch بالعربي لخلق حلقة وصل ومساحة بين مخرجين الأفلام الوثائقية والمجتمع المدني من منظمات غير حكومية، ونشطاء في قضايا العدالة الاجتماعية، والمؤسسات الخيرية، ومتبرعين، وصناع القرار، وحتى شركات التجارية ووسائل إعلام - وذلك بغية خلق ائتلافات و تحالفات و شراكات بإمكانها أن تخدم مصلحة جميع الأطراف المذكورة وإحداث تأثير حقيق في مجتمعاتنا. على مدى عام، ستحظى فرق الأفلام المختارة على إرشاد مستمر، وتطوير محترف لحملات التواصل بالإضافة إلى ورش عمل.
Submissions for Feature Documentaries are open till August 15, 2019
Good Pitch Vancouver call for entries
We’re delighted to share that our colleagues at Story Money Impact have opened for business and are accepting entries for the 2nd edition of Good Pitch Vancouver taking place in early 2020. Last year the full program travelled to Canada for the first time. Surfing on the groundswell of positive momentum, the organisers are poised to continue growing the movement in Canada.
During the six month program, Good Pitch Vancouver leads filmmakers through two multi-day labs where teams and international impact professionals create customised and strategic impact plans and pitches for each film project. On the Good Pitch event day, the selected film teams present their polished pitches to a carefully curated and invited theatre full of organisations and people who are in a position to offer diverse forms of support, like mass memberships, research, experts, archives, pro-bono advice, lobbying, funding or distribution partnerships. All become allies in the film’s launch and campaign.
The deadline for submitting your project is 15 August 2019 so get cracking! Full details here.
Good Pitch Local Hawai’i call for entries
Good Pitch Local Hawai'i will be taking place on 6 November 2019, generating support for media projects that raise awareness and propose solutions for challenges facing the pacific islands. The call is now out for local media makers and community advocates to participate. Are you looking for creative collaborators, community outreach and distribution partners, or funding to tell your story? Up to 16 projects will be selected and trained to pitch. Projects can range from short and long form docs to podcasts, gaming and VR experiences and must be submitted before 31 July 2019. For more information and to apply with a project land here.
Good Pitch Indonesia 2019
Our wonderful colleagues at In-Docs - the leading cultural organisation in Indonesia that cultivates documentary talents, builds the ecosystem for documentary films, and helps them achieve social impact - is organising the next edition of Good Pitch Indonesia in Jakarta on September 5th.
In-Docs has curated five documentary projects for their power to evoke emotions and to push for social change:
A Boarding School
Take an intimate look at an Islamic boarding school that fosters peace and tolerance while cultivating responsible young people. Film still above courtesy of filmmakers
Aim for the Stars
Two blind teenage girls who have been friends since childhood are finding ways to reach their dreams in a world that is not designed for their development.
Iber Djamal (77) has been witnessing decades of the rampant deforestation of Kalimantan. Join his last attempt to save his ancestral land from invasive palm oil companies.
Living on Top of the Fault
After the devastating tsunami and liquefaction that took more than 4,000 lives in Palu, the government is planning to build a giant sea wall, while some community leaders are advocating more sustainable strategies.
Waste on My Plate
Join the personal journey of a filmmaker that examines his own life; how he produces waste, and how the waste comes back to his plate.
If you would like to join the live event, get in touch with Amelia Hapsari via email@example.com.
UK FEATURE DOC SURVEY REMINDER
Talk your truth. If you’re a director or producer working in the UK with one or more feature documentary films under your belt, have your say. The survey is part of a 3-year, AHRC funded project - UK Feature Docs based at the University of the West of England.
TAKE THE SURVEY HERE
Aimed at exploring production and finance primarily, the results of the survey will give voice to our sector and aid lobbying efforts. For those making feature docs, this is a key opportunity to really have their say and to give policy makers, funding bodies and those who affect their future a genuine picture of the unique challenges that they face and what’s needed to create a more sustainable documentary sector.
The deadline to complete the survey is: Friday 19th July 2019
ON THE LOOK-OUT: OPPORTUNITIES
IF/Then Global Shorts Pitch, IDFA - Deadline: 16th September, 2019
A brand new initiative with climate at the heart. IDFA, TFI, and RYOT Films are inviting short documentary filmmakers from all over the globe to apply for a new IF/Then Shorts global pitch opportunity during IDFA 2019. The pitch calls for original, creative, stand-alone short documentaries (10-20 minutes) that explore climate change through the lens of the people and communities directly impacted by this global crisis. Find out more here.
More Films for Freedom - Deadline: 6th August, 2019
Our colleagues from the BFI and British Council are partnering to commission three new short films from cross-cultural teams collaborating to explore LGBTQ+ stories. #MOREFilms4Freedom is now open for applications. Check out full details here.
Cross Currents - Deadline: August 21, 2019
CrossCurrents Doc Funds offer development and production grants of $10,000-$30,000 CAD for interactive, short or feature-length films by emerging international storytellers whose perspectives have been historically underrepresented. The filmmaker’s deep connections to the community will offer a unique perspective on the stories they share.
For more information and to apply visit: www.hotdocs.ca/i/crosscurrents-doc-fund...
John Brabourne Awards - Deadline: July 31, 2019
The JBAs allow people to jump-start their careers in the film industry by supporting upcoming talent, whilst also helping them to carry on when confronted with hardship. They provide individual financial awards up to £5000, which can go towards production projects, scriptwriting and development, education and training. For more information and to apply visit: https://filmtvcharity.org.uk/supporting-talent/john-brabourne-awards/
IDFA Academy - Deadline: September 1, 2019
The IDFA Academy is an intensive four-day program, allowing 100 of upcoming, international directors and producers to gain up-to-date market knowledge of the documentary industry, and learn first-hand about the current trends in documentary filmmaking.
For more information and to apply visit: https://www.idfa.nl/en/article/116085/apply-for-idfacademy-during-idfa
Open City Documentary Festival, Early Bird Accreditation - Deadline: July 19th
Make the most of your time at Open City Documentary Festival with an industry accreditation, available for only £47.50. Offers access to screenings, industry events, talks, panels, parties, and more. For more visit: http://bit.ly/OCDF19IAccreditation
Berlinale Talents Campus - Deadline: September 2, 2019
The Berlinale Talent Campus is aimed at filmmakers and series creators in the early, upcoming stages of their careers, who have made two or more shorts, a feature film or a high-quality series that has screened internationally or won awards.
WFTV Pat Llewellyn Bursary Fund - Deadline: September 30, 2019
This fund will award four successful applicants £10,000 each to establish their factual entertainment or TV project; match them with an industry mentor to support them along the way. They are also given the chance to meet with key decision-makers who have the potential to endorse their idea.
For more info and the chance to apply, visit: https://wftv.org.uk/2019-wftv-pat-llewellyn-bursary-fund-open-for-applications/
New Shoots Filmmakers - Deadline: July 31, 2019
We’re fans of Shooting People’s New Shoots film competition which helps filmmakers wanting to take the next step in their career. Win £1,000 in film funding, industry mentorship, filmmaking equipment, prizes and a public screening of your short in London. An additional £1,000 will be awarded to the overall winner. For more information/applications, visit: https://shootingpeople.org/newshoots/#ROUND3
Bridging the Gap will re-open in August
Our friends at the Scottish Documentary Institute and Northern Ireland Screen will be opening their fantastic Bridging the Gap documentary shorts scheme in August. Highly recommended, keep an eye out on their website here.
Screen Awards 2019 - Deadline: August 30, 2019
The 10th annual screen awards has a new category: Documentary Film Release of the Year. The Screen Awards recognise excellence in UK film distribution, production, marketing, publicity and brand partnerships. If you’d like to apply, it’s free. Here’s the details.