New fund for African documentary makers


One million Canadian dollars have been set aside for African documentary filmmakers in the Hot Docs Blue Ice Film Documentary Fund, to be distributed over the next five years.

An initiative of the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival, the fund caters for development and production funds with development grants of $3,000 – $8,000 and production grants ranging between $5,000 and $40,000. It will be awarded to between four and 10 projects annually.

Entries open from 12 October and close on 14 December. Eligibility is for professional filmmakers who are citizens and residents of countries in continental Africa and are also living and working in the continent.

Elizabeth Radshaw, Hot Docs Forum and Market Director, says that expansive research involving direct evaluation from stakeholders in the African documentary community was conducted by the fund team.

“The fund recognises the importance of supporting all African voices and especially female African documentarians,’ she says.

In addition to financing, the initiative will also offer valuable resources to support production and professional development, and offer filmmakers opportunities to access the international documentary community.

Through an accompanying peer-to-peer mentorship programme, grantees may team with international production partners to bring their projects to international markets, festivals, broadcast and online audiences.

Grantees will have travel, accommodation and accreditation support to attend Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival and Hot Docs Blue Ice Filmmakers Lab.

(Report by Martin Chemhere)


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