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Window to world for docu makers

Pitch labs, workshops, masterclasses, screenings, and a chance for budding documentary filmmakers to present their work before some of the world’s leading broadcasting producers and foundations who might pick it up to fund, co-produce or collaborate.

Docedge, organised by the Documentary Resource Initiative — a non-profit institution for “promoting the art of socially relevant documentary” in association with the Goethe-Institut — will host the 11th edition of a weeklong international documentary film forum from Monday.

It is a forum that brings together some of the biggest names in broadcasting for brainstorming sessions and funding opportunities. BBC and Al Jazeera, Fuji TV Japan, SBS Australia, Sundance Institute, POV Documentary, Tribeca Institute and Ford Foundation from the US are among those likely to be represented.

The participants, selected by a team of experts after thorough screening, will have the opportunity to present their documentaries, polish their ideas and pitch their projects for funding or collaboration.

The 24 projects selected this year include five international works from Israel, Australia, Pakistan, Italy and Indonesia.

“The mentoring, training and pitching forum will bring major decision-makers of international documentary, including broadcasters and foundations, for face-to-face dialogues with Asian filmmakers working on artistically inspired socially relevant documentary,” said Nilotpal Mazumdar, the head of Documentary Resource Initiative.

“A gathering of such talent, blending new and established filmmakers, naturally acts as a forum for discussion on contemporary styles, storytelling techniques and social realities of various diverse cultural regions,” Mazumdar said.

The seven-day affair will see daily workshops and seminars with students and filmmakers, both national and international, two days of masterclasses by international filmmakers; daily screening of award-winning films; public pitching sessions followed by panel feedback and the award ceremony.

At the public pitching sessions, filmmakers will be allotted seven minutes each to show a clip and present their ideas followed by 15 minutes of feedback. Afternoon sessions are reserved for intensive one-to-one meetings with commissioning editors and foundations. While the workshops and masterclasses are closed-door events, the screenings and pitching sessions will be open to all.