The camera does not look away

Socio-critical documentaries: From Theory to Practice

The Regional Office of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation “Dialogue Eastern Europe” is looking for ambitious (documentary) filmmakers from the Eastern Partnership Countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine) and Russia who would like to be trained under the mentorship of a renowned German documentary filmmaker and have a particular interest in topics that relate to the social and economic situation of their countries.

We are, first of all, offering a two-stage online workshop (03-04.12. & 10.-11.12.) led by Jakob Preuss (“The Other Chelsea”, “When Paul came over the Sea”). In the first part you will learn more about nuances of documentary filming through concrete examples and discuss them. In the second part you will pitch your own film ideas and refine them together. It is an explicit possibility that the best film idea will be realized in cooperation with the FES and under further supervision of Jakob Preuss. For this purpose, the FES Regional Office may offer an initial or partial project financing of 10,000 Euros.

Since the working language of the workshops is English, we expect participants to have a basic knowledge of the English language. It may be possible to express yourselves in Russian, but nevertheless a good listening comprehension in English is a prerequisite for participation. Both individuals as well as teams of several people can participate.

Application procedure

We would be particularly happy to receive applications from young, ambitious filmmakers. You do not have to be professionals, but should already have some experience in the field of film production. Of course, more experienced documentary filmmakers are also welcome to apply.
It is desirable that the applicants have already developed a first (raw) socio-critical film idea. This idea could, for example, deal with a topic related to one of the following areas:
- Poverty and social stigmatization
- Consequences of unrestrained markets
- Socially responsible and sustainable entrepreneurship
- Labour migration
- The role of women in society

Participation in both workshops mentioned above is mandatory for all successful applicants.

Your applications should include:
- a short letter of motivation (max. 1 DIN-A4 page), in which the following questions should be answered

  • Why do you want to participate in the workshop?
  • What experience do you already have in the (documentary) film sector?

- a CV
- a short exposé of the film idea (max. 2 DIN-A4 pages)

Please name the files as follows: Motivation_Name_Last Name, CV_Name_Last Name, Exposé_Name_Last Name and send them to:

The application deadline is November 24 2020 23.59 Kyiv’s time.
Successful candidates will be contacted by November 27, 2020.

Dialogue Eastern Europe

01004 Kyiv, Ukraine
Pushkinska 34, 1st floor

+38 (044) 234 1038
+38 (044) 234 1039

office [at]
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