Documentary / Digital Media


IDFAcademy is IDFA’s training programme during the festival. Each year, it offers talented documentary filmmakers and producers the opportunity to gain up-to-date knowledge about the international documentary industry (financing, production, distribution, creative content).
21-24 November 2019
Accreditation form onine: 1 July 2019
Application deadline: 1 September 2019
The IDFAcademy gives filmmakers the opportunity to meet a broad spectrum of highly esteemed documentary professionals who are willing to share their knowledge of the industry. During the training, the participants gain up-to-date market knowledge of the documentary industry and become street-smart about the current trends in documentary filmmaking. Trends and models in various parts of the world are dealt with to ensure that participants develop a broad view of the sector.

The programme consists of masterclasses by well-known directors and smaller sessions on subjects like outreach and distribution. Participants take part in round tables and one-on-ones so they can strengthen their network. is open for directors and producers making their first or second film, who have proven their talent on a national scale and would like to expand their career internationally. Film students are not eligible for the IDFAcademy.

The training programme is open to a maximum of 100 participants. The group consists of filmmakers with a film in the IDFA programme, filmmakers selected together with European film institutes and an quota of seats is allocated for sign-ups. Although the programme is not project-driven, participants have a project or finished film during their attendance. This ensures that participants are constantly applying the general knowledge and advice to their own documentary during the four days.

The fact that IDFAcademy is embedded in the festival has the advantage that participants can get acquainted with a large festival and the markets as well as the new media IDFA DocLab program. In addition to gathering up-to-date market knowledge, another important goal is to build an international network of peers and relevant players such as broadcasters, distributors, funds, festivals and markets, many of whom are in attendance at IDFA. The prevailing practices in financing, production and distribution, but also the latest trends and developments are addressed during these 4 days.
Target groupProducers, Directors
Requirements CV/resume, motivation for attending the programme, filmography, a sample of previous work or the latest documentary and recommendation letters (preferred but not required).
Project-based, Without project
Junior | Intermediate
230 (tbc)
Included Lunches included.
Included Available to 15% of the participants. This consists of a four-night hotel voucher and exemption from the participation fee. IDFA makes this selection on the basis of participants who have a film in the IDFA programme (most likely the First Appearance program).