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Docs in Thessaloniki pitching forum, March 18-22
13 January 2015
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Docs in Thessaloniki consist of a five-day program, where 21 selected documentary projects will be developed, re-written and pitched to a panel of international financiers. For at selected group of top-projects the new outreach programme will offer you an opportunity to develop your outreach strategy, optimise distribution plans and enhance audience engagement.

The first three days are focusing on development
The participating project teams are working on their projects’ structure, style and focus of the content as well as the presentation and pitching techniques. This is done by working in small groups under guidance from international experts and through highly informative seminar sessions. At the end of the workshop each project is re-written and presented to the participating financiers in a 2-page presentation.

The development workshop is lead by experienced international producers & filmmakers. The tutor team is:

Flora Gregory, documentary expert, UK
Iikka Vehkalahti, documentary expert, Finland
Jesper Osmund, Film Editor, Denmark
Stefan Kloos, Producer & Sales Agent, Germany
Hanna Heilborn, Director, Sweden
Rea Apostolides, producer, Greece
Ove Rishøj Jensen, Film Consultant, EDN, Denmark 

Docs in Thessaloniki concludes with two days of pitching
During the pitching sessions all participants pitch their projects to a panel of international financiers from leading broadcasters. Pitchers have seven minutes to present their projects. The visual material in form of a trailer or promo has to be included in these seven minutes. After the pitch the panel has seven minutes to give feedback.

The pitching session is followed by scheduled individual meetings between the pitching teams and the financiers. The meetings are for in-depth discussions about further development and possible future collaboration.

The panel will consist of financiers from leading broadcasters and funders. We expect to have 12-15 financiers present for the Docs in Thessaloniki panel. Till now, these are names confirmed:

Kathrin Brinkmann, ZDF/ARTE, Germany
Madeleine Avramoussis, ARTE GEIE, France
Lars Säfström, SVT, Sweden
Hanka Kastelicova, HBO Europe, Hungary
Jenny Westergård, YLE, Finland
Claudia Schreiner, MDR, Germany
Jan Rofekamp, Films Transit, Canada
Kerime Senyücel, TRT, Turkey

Outreach workshop
In connection with the 2015 edition of Docs in Thessaloniki EDN is launching a new outreach workshop, which is tied to this pitching forum as well as Lisbon Docs. The new format will create a synergy between the two events, by selecting the top projects from each forum and bring them together in this post-event session taking place as an online workshop.

Focus for the session will be how the selected project teams can handle the increased need to combine new financing methods and alternative distribution methods with more traditional public funding sources. During the workshop the selected teams will strengthen the understanding of audience building and outreach for their projects in development. Through the online workshop the participants will:

Learn about tools for audience engagement 
Sharpen their distribution strategy 
Get individual feedback from outreach experts 
Enhanced promotion and distribution possibilities  

The participants will benefit from these added values without adding extra travel costs and expenses for the production teams, as the seminar will take place online. The workshop is scheduled as a three-day event in early December 2015.

How to participate

The deadline for submitting your project for Docs in Thessaloniki is January 16, 2015. 

You submit your project by sending a written 2-page presentation of your project accompanied by visual material.

The 2-page presentation
Your written 2-page presentation should include the following elements: 

Project info: project title, status of the project, expected time of delivery, length, & format 
The film: depending in the nature of the project this can include the story, characters, visual approach, directors note, etc. 
Contacts: name of producer, production company, director and contact information 
Profiles: short CV & filmography of company and director 
Financing: budget sum (total sum for the production, not the whole budget) and brief financing plan. 

You can submit your 2-page presentation by email to: 

The visual material
We prefer receiving applications accompanied by visual material; either as material already shot for the submitted project or as a previous work. You submit your visual material by including a link to an online streaming facility like Vimeo or YouTube when you email your 2-page presentation.

Participating without a project
If you currently do not have an international project in development but want to know more about making documentary projects for the international market, gain a network of international colleagues and meet leading international financiers you can of course still take part in Docs in Thessaloniki. Simply apply as a participant without a project. You will take part in all seminars and all sessions on equal terms with the selected project teams.

To apply for as a participant without a project, please send your C.V. and a short motivation for your participation to You can apply up until the start of the workshop, but as seats are limited, early applications are preferred. 

Participation fee

Please note that there is no fee for submitting your project to Docs in Thessaloniki. 
If your project is selected or if you want to participate without a project, the price for being part of Docs in Thessaloniki is:

€300 for the first person connected to a project 
€200 for second or third person connected to a project 
€200 for observers

EDN members receive a 20% discount.

Besides the whole five-day pitching workshop and forum the participation fee includes all lunches and coffee breaks, dinner on the first evening and a festival pass for the Thessaloniki Documentary Festival.

EDN Contact Person

Ove Rishøj Jensen
Phone: +45 3313 1122

Docs in Thessaloniki is organized by EDN in collaboration with the Thessaloniki Documentary Festival - Images of the 21st Century.

Source: European Documentary Network official site
  Rea Apostolides
  Awards of 14th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival
  15th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival 2013 - Images of the 21st Century March 15 – 24, 2013
  The 16th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival – Images of the 21st Century
  Balkan Documentaries at 16th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival
  The 16th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival Awards
  Thessaloniki Documentary Festival on Facebook
  European Documentary Center official site
  altcine Explore movies by Country People To read
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