Master's Pitch 2022

Tell Us What You Need – What You Really Really Need

This is a hybrid event.

To attend on site, please book a free ticket in advance. 

To participate online, please log in to your account and register via the event page in order to receive the link.


Not a word about C... or P…, but let’s be frank: we cannot pretend that we are back to normal, and nothing has changed. The documentary industry is hurting, and we rely more than ever on the Magic Triangle of independent creators, public funds, and broadcasters/platforms – collaborating financially and creatively to keep the power of documentary alive and kicking. But how do we keep the creative juices flowing? What do filmmakers and producers need to flourish? What do funders need to stay relevant? And what do broadcasters and platforms need to engage and enlighten audiences?

Along the lines of the well-known dictum, Never Waste a Good Crisis, it’s time for new visions, new initiatives, taking frank, realistic stock, but also grabbing and exploring the glimpses of opportunities the crisis also offered us.

It’s time to be authentically BOLD: what do we really need? But it’s also time to truly LISTEN, reflect and pool together, rather than proclaiming statements and fortifying our respective positions.

Let’s share our best practices, workable weaknesses, and learnable mistakes, envisioning the ultimate roadmap(s) from idea and intention to audience and impact.
In the 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 reflections and current needs in keynotes.


Programme and Projects

13.00–13.15 Welcome & introduction

13.20–13.35 Kick-off keynote by Sabine Bubeck-Paaz, ZDF: "Still Making Sense" Coproducing documentaries in times of crises"

13.35–14.20 Pitching block 1

13.35–13.50 Pitch 1 and Feedback: RUSSIA VS. LAWYERS, Netherlands/Germany
Pitching Team: Masha Novikova and Julia Shaginurova

13.50–14.05 Pitch 2 and Feedback: OUR SEEDS, Turkey
Pitching Team: Erhan Arik and Meryem Yavuz 

14.05–14.20 Pitch 3 and Feedback: OLE MI COÑO: MY SEXTORTION DIARY, Spain
Pitching Team: Patricia Franquesa and Mireia Graell 

14.20–14.35 Impulse talk by Derren Lawford, Dare Pictures: "Uncertainty, Flexibility and Opportunity: My New Normality"

14.35–15.05 Pitching block 2

14.35–14.50 Pitch 4 and Feedback: MEMORY WARS, Germany/Sweden
Pitching Team: Hendrik Löbbert and Erik Winker 

14.50–15.05 Pitch 5 and Feedback: UNTITLED: MISS AFRICA SOUTH, South Africa
Pitching Team: Jacqui-Lee Katz and Darren Kerr 


15.05–15.30 Coffee Break 
15.30–15.45 Impulse talk by Jake Wiafe, Little Dot Studios: "Not Everyone Likes Documentaries"
15.45–16.45 Pitching block 3

15.45–16.00 Pitch 6 and Feedback: CONCRETE LAND, Jordan
Pitching Team: Asmahan Bkerat and Sahar Yousefi 

16.00–16.15 Pitch 7 and Feedback: VIBE ISTANBUL, Turkey/France
Pitching Team: Nafise Esmael Motlaq and Saeed Nasiri 

16.15–16.30 Pitch 8 and Feedback: FINDING LA SINGLA, Spain/Germany
Pitching Team: Paloma Zapata and Nadja Smith 

16.30–16.45 Pitch 9 and Feedback: VELVET GENERATION, Slovakia/Czech Republic
Pitching Team: Ivana Hucíková and Monika Loš?áková 

16.45–17.00 Impulse talk

17.00–17.10 Closing Words Karolina Lidin & Thank yous



Master's Pitch Jury


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


Sabine Bubeck-Paaz, ZDF 
Timo Großpietsch, NDR 
Derren Lawford, Dare Pictures 
Matthias Leybrand, BR 
Philippa Kowarsky, BBC
Esther van Messel, First Hand Films
Jake Wiafe, Little Dot Studios


In partnership with Documentary Campus

Documentary Campus is a non-profit organisation based in Munich. Through a combination of workshops, seminars, training programmes and industry events, the throughout Europe renowned professional training initiative supports budding filmmakers in developing their film projects and introduces them to the international standards and rules of the documentary film game by providing professionals and up-and-coming talents with the know-how, networking opportunities and contacts to find co-production partners and to help their documentaries succeed on an international scale.


In cooperation with

Craetive Europe Desk München

Supported by

  • Logo Sponsor
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  • Fri, 05/06/22
    Deutsches Theater Silbersaal
  • Fri, 05/06/22
    Deutsches Theater Silbersaal
Sabine Bubeck-Paaz
Timo Grosspietsch
Commissioning editor documentary/ Redaktion Dokumentarfilm (NDR (ARD))

Timo Großpietsch is a German documentary filmmaker and commissioning-editor from Hamburg. He is currently working on the artistic documentary river. The third part of the trilogy: city, land, river. He has received various prizes and awards for his productions for cinema, streaming platforms and television. His documentaries have also been screened at renowned festivals. As a commissioning editor at NDR, he develops and oversees documentaries and documentary series. He is a member of the "Director's Cut" committee of the Moin Film Fund Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein.

Derren Lawford
(DARE Pictures)

Derren is the founder and CEO of DARE Pictures, a transnational studio dedicated to premium, inclusive and impactful content. Prior to DARE Pictures, he was Creative Director at Woodcut Media where he played a pivotal role in the creation of over 300 hours of TV and executive produced a trio of documentaries sold to Netflix – the BFI funded feature documentary Generation Revolution, as well as Mandela, My Dad and Me, and Cut From A Different Cloth, both co-produced with Idris Elba. Further notable EP credits include Fiennes: Return to the Nile, as well as The Ivy to name a few. Over the past 6 years he has also helped develop and mentor 20 plus feature documentaries including Reporter/Refugee winner of the 10th ARD Documentary prize in 2021 and was part of the team behind the BAFTA award-winning film, The Black Cop.

Matthias Leybrand
Cinema and debut (Bayerischer Rundfunk)
1993-1996 Studies at HFF Munich 1997-2016 TV Journalist BR (KinoKino, Capriccio) since 2016 Commissioning Editor BR, cinema and debut
Karolina Lidin
Senior Advisor Documentary (Nordisk Film & TV Fond)

Karolina Lidin is a documentary consultant with 25+ years of experience on the international documentary scene, currently engaged at Nordisk Film & TV Fond as Documentary Advisor and for 12 years Executive Producer at Sheffield Doc/Fest, developing the successful MeetMarket concept. In addition, Karolina Lidin is continuously involved in mentoring/training schemes, developing projects with international potential, lately with Docs by the Sea, DocEdge Kolkata, Dhaka DocLab, DocsPort Incheon/DMZ, and Below Zero. Karolina has previous experience as producer, film commissioner, distributor and as CEO of Nordisk Panorama and Nordisk Forum. Karolina’s activities also include moderating the IDFA FORUM and numerous other film festival and market events - in addition to festival jury duty, panel & selection committee participation, and tutoring worldwide.

Esther van Messel
CEO (First Hand Films)

Esther van Messel, born 1965 in Vienna, is based in Zurich and holds a BfA from the Tel Aviv University. She headed Warner Bros. Israel and from 1992 produced feature films and documentaries in Zurich. Since 1998, she runs FIRST HAND FILMS for production, global sales and theatrical distribution. Today, First Hand Films have been seen by many hundred millions of people.

Jake Wiafe
Programming Manager, Documentary & Film (Real Stories - Little Dot Studios)

London-born Jake Wiafe started working at Little Dot Studios in July 2017 as an operations assistant, tasked with increasing the social media presence of their Network channels, focusing mainly on their documentary brand, Real Stories. Over the past 4 years, Real Stories has grown to over 4 million YouTube subscribers, 4 million Facebook followers, won countless awards including a 2019 BAFTA TV award and a Canadian Screen Award, and has produced and commissioned their own original documentaries. In that time Jake has moved up to the role of Senior Content Editor, working with an immensely talented team on brands across the LDS network. His work involves commissioning and licensing documentaries from filmmakers, developing unscripted content and doing outreach to filmmakers from underrepresented backgrounds.