Some people may think that documentary filmmaking is a simple process, but there are many aspects to the art form. Documentary filmmakers must be able to maintain their objectivity and not insert their own personal opinions into the film.

In addition, they must be skilled in directing actors and filming with a single camera. It takes skillful editing skills as well to present an unbiased representation of reality in the documentary form.

There are numerous documentaries out there about all sorts of topics from animals living in jungles to life on Mars; it’s up to you what kind of story you want your audience to see!



What Are Documentary Film Festivals?

Documentary film festivals are events that showcase documentaries and the filmmakers behind them.

Documentaries have been around since 1894, but it was not until 1956 that the first documentary film festival took place in France.

Since then, documentary films have gained popularity with people from all over the world.

There are many different types of documentary film festivals out there for you to choose from — ranging from those about art and society to those about topics like food or social justice issues.



True/False Film Festival

The festival was created by filmmakers, for filmmakers and it has been called one of the best film festivals in America.

It is held annually in Columbia, Missouri to celebrate documentary films that are made for social change. There are many different types of documentaries that you can see at this film festival including environmental issues, health care reform, and even global warming.

Many famous celebrities have attended this event because they believe in its mission which is to foster a better understanding of important issues through storytelling and dialogue with other communities around the world.

The True/False Film Festival is a 10-day celebration of documentary film, community involvement, and social justice. The festival features films from around the world as well as workshops on filmmaking and storytelling for all ages.

The way it works is that every day there are different movies playing that you can choose to see depending on what topic interests you most or if any particular filmmaker inspires you.

There are also daily conversations with filmmakers about their work hosted by local experts who have a deep knowledge of each film’s subject matter.

Thessaloniki International Film Festival

The Thessaloniki International Film Festival has been going strong from 1960!

The festival showcases documentaries on social, environmental, and cultural issues that are relevant to Greece and beyond. It is an opportunity for Greek audiences to learn about other cultures by experiencing them through film.

Films shown in past years have covered topics such as the civil war in Syria, climate change impacts on communities, urban development across borders, and more.

The films often address issues that would not be brought up otherwise because they might be considered too sensitive or controversial but are still important nonetheless.

Film screenings will take place at various venues around town including cinemas like Cinema Metropolis and theaters like National Theatre of Northern Greece.

This year’s festival will be held on November 4 – 14.

Visions Du Reel

Visions Du Reel (meaning “visions of reality”) is a documentary film festival that takes place in Nyon, Switzerland. Now in its 18th year, the festival has been said to be one of Europe’s most important festivals for documentaries.

It began as a celebration of cinema and television from around the world with an emphasis on films about social change. Over time it grew into an international platform featuring some of the best documentaries from across Europe and beyond.

The festival now features both competition programs and non-competitive selections like Visions du Réel en lumière, which showcases films by emerging filmmakers who explore urgent global themes such as climate change, the migration crisis, or universal access to water.

The Visions du Réel festival has been described as “the largest independent documentary film festival in the world,” and it is responsible for launching many award-winning films including “The Act of Killing” (2012) and “Citizenfour” (2014).

It is also one of the few festivals to have an open submission policy.

Visions Du Réel takes place annually on the site of La Fête de l’Humanité at Saint Ouen l’Aumône just outside Paris, France from April 18th-27th 2018. In addition to screenings of international documentaries, this year’s edition will feature workshops

Visions Du Reel is a Swiss documentary film festival that has been showcasing the best in international documentaries since 1969.

They are now accepting submissions from filmmakers all around the world and are currently looking for films to screen at their 2021 festival.

Hot Docs

Hot Docs is a film festival in Toronto that showcases documentaries. The event takes place every year and includes films from different parts of the world. In particular, it has been known as one of the most important documentary festivals in North America.

Hot Docs features many different kinds of films including those about social justice, health care, art and culture, environment, and wildlife protection but also films on human rights issues like genocide or trafficking for example.

The festival’s mission is to “inspire dialogue.” There are over 100 screenings at this year’s event with filmmakers coming from all around the globe to attend. It will be an amazing opportunity to view some hard-hitting documentaries that have made a big impact in society today.

If you’re passionate about documentarians or are just looking for something new this April then don’t miss out on Hot Docs!  The schedule includes more than 150 films, many of which are screening for their Canadian premieres.

The festival was founded in 1993 by a group of Canadian filmmakers who wanted to create an alternative space for documentaries that wasn’t limited to a traditional theatrical setting. This year’s theme is “Rethinking Documentary”.

Hot Docs has been running for 25 years now and features screenings, panel discussions, workshops, industry events as well as special presentations with prominent figures such as Jane Goodall and George Lucas.

Sheffield DocFest

Sheffield Doc/Fest is an annual documentary festival, with the tagline “Films that Change Your World.” It is a documentary festival that has been running since 1993 and attracts filmmakers from all over the world. Its aim is to promote independent film through screenings, workshops, pitches, and networking events.

Since 2012, the festival has grown into an international event attracting visitors from all over the globe including Australia, India, and Russia.

The festival showcases over 160 films and takes place in Sheffield (the UK’s fourth-largest city). The film selection includes a wide variety of topics such as social justice, human rights, environmental issues, religion, and faith.

Sheffield Doc/Fest is held every year from Wednesday 25th to Sunday 29th October, it takes place every July in England’s third-largest city – Sheffield! This year’s theme is “The Power of Documentary” which has been chosen to reflect the power documentaries have had on audiences this year.

Films showing include: ‘This Changes Everything, ‘Saving Syria’s Children’, ‘I Am Not Your Negro’, and many more. Tickets are available online for £5-£140.


Silver Docs

It is held every year in Silver Spring, Maryland, and Washington, D.C.

Started in 2003, the festival is held for five days in June at the AFI Silver Theatre as well as several locations in Washington, D.C.

The Silver Docs Film Festival has been providing people around the globe with an intimate window into some of the most pressing health issues for decades, and this year will be no different!

The festival features films on medicine, science, the environment, human rights, and more.

This year’s lineup includes topics such as aging populations in Japan; healthcare systems in Zambia; HIV/AIDS research in India; social entrepreneurship addressing global poverty in Africa; climate change impacting water supplies worldwide.

Sunny Side of the Doc, La Rochelle

Established in La Rochelle, Sunny Side of the Doc has become a landmark international event.

It gives a lot of opportunities to all participants by suggesting open calls, they are open to all talents:

  • producers,
  • directors,
  • digital creators,
  • games & interactive designers with the ambition to join the international documentary market.

They accept submissions from all countries – including emerging markets – as long as they are written in English.

The marketplace’s 33rd edition will take place on 20-23 June 2022 live in La Rochelle.

DOK Leipzig

Internationales Leipziger Festival für Dokumentar – und Animationsfilm is a documentary film festival that takes place every year in Leipzig, Germany.

It is an international film festival for documentary and animated film founded in 1955 under the name “1st All-German Leipzig Festival of Cultural and Documentary Films” and was the first independent film festival in East Germany.

The initiative for the 1st All-German Leipzig Festival of Cultural and Documentary Films came from West German journalist and film critic Ludwig Thomés who, in the course of a discussion with the East German filmmakers club, Club der Filmschaffenden der DDR, proposed establishing a festival in Leipzig both as a counterpart to the Mannheim Culture and Documentary Filmweek (now known as International Filmfestival Mannheim-Heidelberg) and as a platform for productions from East Germany.

After receiving permission from the responsible authorities, the inaugural festival was held from 11 to 17 September 1955 with Walter Kernicke as director.

However, no sooner had the festival started than it was stopped. Following harsh media criticism of the political influence over and the organization of the 1956 festival, the organizers attempted to force changes.

The response of the Government was to cancel the 1957, 1958, and 1959 festivals.

The official reasons given were:

  • the deteriorating situation in West German filmmaking (1957),
  • the loss of the original function of the festival as a German cultural and documentary film week (1958), and
  • plans to establish a cultural and documentary film week of the socialist states (1958).

The early 1990s were characterized by extremely low attendances and half-empty cinemas.

In 1992 a competition was run with the buyer of the 3000th season pass being awarded a return flight to London.

However, over the course of the decade visitor numbers started to recover with some 16,000 attendees in 1997.

International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA)

The International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) is an annual event that showcases the most innovative and inspiring documentary films from around the world.

Founded in 1969 by Dutch filmmaker Willem Jacobi to promote awareness for international cinema among Dutch audiences, IDFA has grown into a one-of-a-kind cultural institution for contemporary filmmakers.

The festival features more than 160 films from over 50 countries including works by filmmakers such as:

  • Werner Herzog,
  • Ken Loach,
  • Agnès Varda and
  • Laura Poitras.

With its strong emphasis on innovation in documentary storytelling techniques through technology and visual storytelling, IDFA continues to be at the forefront of new developments in nonfiction film production while also honoring established masters of cinema verite like Dziga.

The IDFA is one of the most important documentary festivals in Europe, and it attracts filmmakers from all over the world with its focus on documentaries as art.

This year, we will be showcasing films about journalism, climate change, gender issues, and LGBT rights.

The event covers topics such as war, poverty, globalization, climate change, and more. Many of the films present at this festival have won awards for their subject matter or filmmaking techniques.


CPH:DOX is the official name for the Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival, an international documentary film festival established in 2003 and held annually in Copenhagen, Denmark.

CPH:DOX has since grown to become one of the largest documentary film festivals in Europe with 114,408 admissions in 2019.

History Of Film Festivals

The history of film festivals is a long and winding one. The word “film festival” was originally coined in the 1930s as an opportunity for filmmakers to share their work with audiences, but it wasn’t until the 1960s that they became more commonplace.

In 1968, there were only three major festivals (Venice, Cannes, and Berlin) but today there are hundreds around the world.

The first official U.S. film festival took place in 1978 in New York City at Lincoln Center’s newly constructed Walter Reade Theater; it was called “The Festival Of Festivals” and featured a retrospective of films from all over the world including Brazil’s “Black Orpheus”.

The first American film festival to be held on a large scale was San Francisco’s Golden Gate International Film Festival (GGIFF) which ran from 1957 to 1981.

The GGIFF helped pioneer the international film festival movement by showing films that had not yet received distribution in North America, as well as those with wider releases.

History Of Documentary Film

The history of documentary films has been intertwined with the race for social justice and equality. The first documented documentaries were created during the French Revolution to document the atrocities committed by King Louis XVI’s army against its own citizens.

These early documentaries are considered some of the earliest examples of propaganda in film, made to sway public opinion about a political or religious issue.

The evolution of documentary film has changed the way we view the world in many ways.

In more recent years, documentary filmmaking has become one of the most potent tools for social change, examining and shedding light on important issues such as poverty, racism, war crimes, and environmental destruction.

Documentaries have also played an instrumental role in motivating action on these topics by providing viewers with compelling evidence about pressing world problems that they can then share with others through activism or advocacy efforts, encouraging them to

Documentary films are a type of non-fiction films that are meant to be factual. They have been around in some form since the early 20th century but only really became popular during the 1960s when television began to grow.

What Is Documentary Filmmaking?

Documentary filmmaking is a type of filmmaking that can be done in any number of ways. It may be to inform the audience about a topic, to explore an idea, or to tell a story.

Documentary filmmakers are often interested in making films on topics they feel passionate about and will do extensive research before filming even starts so they know what kind of footage they need.

They then take this information and use it as the basis for their film by interviewing people who have lived through the events being documented and had first-hand experience with them.

This allows them to provide some historical context which makes for rich storytelling; but also provides perspective on how those events impacted others’ lives around them at the time as well as afterward too.

Documentary filmmaking is an art that has been around for almost a hundred years. This type of film usually tells the story of real people and events in a way to makes it more interesting or entertaining.

It can be difficult to accomplish this, as some documentaries are just too dry with factual information. How do you know which ones are worth watching?

This blog post is going to help you understand what documentary filmmaking is all about and give you five great examples of award-winning documentaries that will have you hooked from beginning to end!

The documentary filmmaking process can be broken down into four steps: pre-production, production, post-production, and distribution. Each step is vital to the success of a film. Pre-production includes choosing your subject matter and location.

Production entails capturing footage that will eventually become a documentary film. Post-production encompasses editing the raw footage captured during production together with audio tracks and visual effects for an engaging story or message


The final step in the documentary filmmaking process is distribution where you release your finished product to audiences across various platforms such as television channels, streaming services, or theaters.

The best way to get started in this line of work is by attending workshops on how to produce documentaries from professionals in the field!

Guide To Documentary Filmmaking

Documentary filmmaking is a new and exciting way to tell stories. You might be wondering what it entails, how you can get started, or which documentary films are worth the watch. This guide will help you answer those questions and many more!

Documentary filmmaking is a form of non-fiction media that tells real-life stories through either one long film or multiple shorter ones.

There are many different types of documentaries like nature documentaries, personal documentaries, political documentaries, and even fly on the wall television programs that capture everyday life in all its mundane glory.

The best part about documentary filmmaking is that no matter what story you’re telling there’s always something interesting to learn along the way!

Documentary filmmakers have the added task of trying to relay their message in a way that will connect emotionally with their audience, while still following the rules set out by documentarians before them.

Here are some tips for you:

– The first thing is that your idea needs to be clear and concise.

– Next, find people who are experts in the field or who have been affected by the topic at hand.

Interview them about their experiences as they pertain to your topic area. The interviews should be recorded and transcribed for clarity later on when editing footage.

– After all interviews are completed, it is time for filming so grab your camera and go!