First Time Filmmaker Project call


South Africa’s National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) has opened a call for
proposals for first time filmmakers to make their first films. The First Time Filmmaker
Project was created to provide recent film school graduates from historically
disadvantaged backgrounds with an opportunity to make their first professional film.

Successful writers or directors will be guided in the development of their stories for
12-15-minute scripts for a fiction film over a period of five months.

As far as possible themes and story ideas should reflect young South Africans’
experience of life in post-apartheid South Africa, particularly those referred to as the
“born free’ generation. The perspective and point of view of this generation of young
people is largely misunderstood and often misrepresented. The stories are a window
into and a gauge that takes the temperature of where we’ve come from, who we are
and where we want to go to. Story ideas can embrace all genres from love stories to
coming of age and everything in between.


The scripts will be prepped for camera in preparation for the production of the films
with the aim of the films being completed by March 2014. During this process each
director will be provided with the necessary tools to break down scripts for camera as
well as detailed strategies for extracting the best performances from the actors.

The successful projects and teams will then be provided with a professional
production crew to shoot their film. A post-production supervisor will be appointed to
assist them in the editing and final delivery of the film.

Once the films are completed the producers in association with the NFVF will be
involved in developing a strategy for marketing and distribution. Finally, a special
premiere of three of the best completed films as chosen by their peers will be held at
a suitable venue to be confirmed with the cast, crew and creative personnel as well
as NFVF council and staff.

In order for a filmmaker to be considered for this opportunity, the applicant must
meet the following requirements:

  • Have graduated from an accredited tertiary film programme within the last two
  • Be a Historically Disadvantaged Individual as defined in the constitution of
    South Africa.
  • Be under 35 years old.
  • Be able to set aside the requisite time over a period of 12 months to
    complete the programme

Eligible candidates for the project must:

  • Demonstrate a willingness and ability to work with others in pursuit of the same
  • Understand the value of and is able to work under pressure and tight
  • Not have made a dramatic short film professionally.

The closing date for submissions is 24 May. All applications should be able to provide
the following documentation in hard copy (in triplicate) for consideration to our

A one page story idea/synopsis by individuals or writer/director teams
CV and copy of ID document.
Attention: Thandeka Zwana
2nd Floor, 87 Central Street, Houghton,2198, South Africa.


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