Master's Pitch 2021

Through the Lockdown Looking Glass: Visions of new Documentary Horizons

Already Pre-Pandemic, with digital platforms and new financial opportunities on the rise, conventional financing strategies were being challenged – and thus distribution strategies as well. When the world came to a standstill, the necessity of radical readjustment and creative reinvention of how we work individually and as a global community could no longer be ignored. It was the nick of time to get out of our respective Rabbit Holes.

What have we learned, what kind of perspective have we gained, not just from readjusting and reinventing, but also from standing still and having a moment to take stock of what is important and what maybe not? Are we maybe now better equipped to navigate the entangled landscape of platforms, rights and audiences without leaving our values, visions and voices behind? 

No filmmaker is an island, no distributor, exhibitor or spectator either – especially amidst these seismic shifts, reasserting ourselves and our ways of working together is more important than ever to ensure the height, depth & breadth of the documentary art form in a Post-Pandemic world. 

In the unique, interactive setting of the Masters’ Pitch, 9 new documentary projects heading into this transitioning market, will be presented to international commissioners and experts. Feedback is also sought from the audience, including producers, directors, distributors and representatives of major broadcasters. Our jury members will be in the spotlight as well to share their visions of the future potentials – and pitfalls – of this New Normal.

The event will be moderated by renowned documentary consultant Karolina Lidin (Nordisk Film & TV Fund).

The Master’s Pitch is a unique format for training and collaboration, initiated by Documentary Campus and DOK.fest München.

Friday, 7th May 2021


Programme and Projects

1.00–1.15pm Welcome & introduction

1.20–1.30pm Kick-off keynote by Simon Kilmurry, Executive Director, IDA, US


1.30–3.15pm Pitching block 1 (Pitch: 5 min. / Feedback: 10 min.)

1.30–1.45pm Pitch 1 and Feedback: DANCING ON THE EDGE OF A VOLCANO, Germany/Lebanon
Pitching Team: Cyril Aris and Katharina Weser

1.45–2.00pm Pitch 2 and Feedback: HAYFLICK LIMIT, Belgium
Pitching Team: Thomas Licata and Florence Saâdi

2.00–2.15pm Pitch 3 and Feedback: BROTHERHOOD, Switzerland
Pitching Team: Hanka Maciag and Esther van Messel


2.20–2.30pm Impulse talk with Q&A by Mandy Chang, Commissioning Editor, BBC Storyville, UK

2.30–3.00pm Coffee Break (Spatial Chat)

3.00–3.15pm Impulse talk with Q&A by Thomas Beyer, Commissioning Editor, MDR, Germany


3.5–4.00pm Pitching block 2 (Pitch: 5 min. / Feedback: 10 min.)

3.15–3.30pm Pitch 4 and Feedback: SCHOOL FOR PEACE, Germany/Israel
Pitching Team: Guy Wasserman, Nir Dvortchin & Moritz Bundschuh

3.30–3.45pm Pitch 5 and Feedback: A PICTURE TO REMEMBER, Ukraine
Pitching Team: Olga Chernykh & Regina Maryanovska Davidzon

3.45–4.00pm Pitch 6 and Feedback: SILVER’S UPRISING, Israel
Pitching Team: Dan Shadur & Ido Mizrahy


4.00–4.15pm Impulse talk with Q&A by Volker Neuenhoff, Head of German Amazon Original Unscripted TV, Amazon Studios, Germany

4.15–4.45pm Coffee Break (Spatial Chat)


4.45–5.30 Pitching block 3 (Pitch: 5 min. / Feedback: 10 min.)

4.45–5.00pm Pitch 7 and Feedback: BIG OIL VS. THE LAW, Germany
Pitching Team: Mette Reitzel & Nadja Smith

5.00–5.15pm Pitch 8 and Feedback: THE ULTIMATE JOKER, Poland
Pitching Team: Krzysztof Dzięciołowski & Agata Jujeczka

5.15–5.30pm Pitch 9 and Feedback: BAM, BAM: THE STORY OF SISTER NANCY, Canada
Pitching Team: Ngardy Conteh George & Alison Duke


5.30–5.45pm Impulse talk with Q&A by Estelle de Araujo, The Party Film Sales, France

5.45–5.50pm Closing Words Karolina Lidin & Thank yous

5.50–6.30pm Virutal After-Pitch Cocktail (Spatial Chat)

The event will be moderated by renowned documentary consultant Karolina Lidin (Nordisk Film & TV Fund).


Master's Pitch Jury

Thomas Beyer, Commissioning Editor, MDR, Germany
Mandy Chang, Commissioning Editor, BBC Storyville, UK
Estelle De Araujo, Head of TV Sales, The Party Film Sales, France
Mark Edwards, Commissioning Editor, ARTE France, France
Timo Großpietsch, Commissioning Editor, NDR, Germany
Simon Kilmurry, Executive Director, IDA, USA
Grazyna Krupa, Executive in Charge of ARTS Programming | Unscripted Programming, CBC, Canada
Kelsey Koenig, Senior Director of Development, Impact Partners, USA
Jake Wiafe, Senior Content Editor, Little Dot Studios / Real Stories, UK

We reserve the right to make changes to the programme.

In cooperation with


Retrospect: Master's Pitch goes Master's Vision at 2020 @home

As the Master's Pitch on the 8th of May could unfortunately not be realised as an on-site event and since the format could not be transferred to the digital world without losing its fruitful atmosphere of cooperation, Documentary Campus and Munich decided on a modified version for 2020’s festival edition:

Master's Pitch goes Master's Vision. The Corona virus is currently also stirring up the film industry. Selected jury members and project teams for this year’s Master's Pitch goes Master's Vision were invited to share insights and visions on their current working reality and the impact that Covid-19 will have on the future of the documentary film industry. How is the crisis changing our reality? What consequences will it have for filmmakers worldwide? What strategies can we use to counter it? In video statements, 10 international professionals provide answers - and exclusive insights into their life and work with Covid-19.

Hosted by documentary film advisor Karolina Lidin from Nordisk Film & TV Fund.

The 10 video interviews were published daily on Youtube, our website and Facebook during the event period between 7th and 16th May.



Axel Arnö, SVT

"Documentary filmmakers are a strong bunch."

Christopher King & Maia Lekow, Circle & Square Productions

Nathalie Windhorst, VPRO

Birgit Schulz, BILDERSTURM

Jane Mote, The Whickers

Mathieu Dolenc & Andrea Schütte, TAMTAM FILM

Bernadett Tuza-Ritter

Maelle Guénégues, Cat&Docs

Marianne Mäkelä, napafilms

Mark Edwards, ARTE

The projects of the MASTER'S PITCH 2020


Director Freya Hattenberger, Marita Loosen-Fox Birgit Schulz Peter Simon


Director Jesse Jokinen & Petri Luukkainen Producer Marianne Mäkelä & Liisa Karpo


Director Maia Lekow & Christopher King Producer Maia Lekow & Christopher King


Director Bigna Tomschin Producer Andrea Schütte, Mathieu Dolenc, Sarah Born Composer Roman Lerch


Director Bernadett Tuza-Ritter Producer Peter Stern, Laszlo Józsa Composer TBD




Axel Arnö (Commissioning editor, SVT)
Mark Edwards (Auftragsredakteur, ARTE France)
Maëlle Guenegues (Festivals & Acquisitions, CAT&Docs)
Jane Mote (Consultant Editor, The Whickers)
Nathalie Windhorst (Factual Acquisition, VPRO)


Presented by in partnership with Documentary Campus.


Supported by