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Hottest Ticket In Town: Festival Announces Filmmaker Focused Industry Events

Industry professionals take part in The Forum, one of the Doc Edge festival’s high anticipated public sessions. Credit: Deane Cohen
Image/Supplied


JUNE 4, 2024

Doc Edge alongside festival partners ChristchurchNZ and Screen CanterburyNZ release details on the Doc Edge Industry 2024 - a four-day feast for screen professional events from 26 – 29 June in Ōtautahi.

On top of a record-breaking 30 world premieres and more than 100 screenings and exhibits across various locations and cinemas in Ōtautahi Christchurch this June, the Doc Edge International Documentary Film Festival organisers have released details on the raft of film-maker-focused industry events planned.

These include interactive workshops, keynote speakers, a prestigious awards night and various other industry-led activations. The Doc Edge Pitch 2024, The 19th Annual Doc Edge Oscar® Qualifying Awards and The Doc Edge Forum 2024. “These industry-focused activations are designed for screen professionals from Aotearoa and abroad to come together to meet, share ideas, network, problem solve, and ultimately to produce vital and incredible content,” says Doc Edge GM & Festival Producer Rachael Penman.

Doc Edge Pitch – Wayfinding will be held on 26-27 June at the Christchurch Town Hall. This is a new and reimagined navigation approach to Doc Edge Pitch. Wayfinding supports Pitch participants in their quest to navigate through to the place or places they want to be. Instead of forcing filmmakers to compete, the workshop aims to surround participants with Wayfinders, industry professionals from various backgrounds, who will be able to support them to identify and take the next steps. In addition, there is the Market and annual online market for filmmakers to promote their films for acquisition.

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“Over and above the incredible documentary festival, the slew of industry events reinforced ChristchurchNZ’s determination to bring Doc Edge to Ōtautahi Christchurch this year,” says Martin Cudd, GM Innovation & Business Growth, ChristchurchNZ.

“The festival brings over 40 local and international filmmakers, leading documentary experts, funders, commissioners, sales agents, distributors, acquisition managers, co-production partners, festival programmers, marketplace managers and mentors together in Ōtautahi Christchurch and we encourage film makers of all walks of life to take part in these events all focused on growing capacity in our region,” says Cudd.

Headlining the Forum event this year is highly decorated award-winning producer Ted Hope, along with several award-winning filmmakers and industry professionals who bring vast amounts of experience and insight.

“We are committed to inspire storytellers, have courageous conversations, and support content makers to take risks,” says Doc Edge Kaiwhakahere Director Alex Lee.

“With a focus on connecting Kiwi voices globally and supporting filmmakers at all career stages, the Forum provides valuable insights into funding, distribution, festival involvement, and production. Doc Edge Forum serves as a platform for emerging and established storytellers to gather, exchange ideas, and advance their careers,” Lee concludes.

The festival culminates with the Oscar® qualifying awards night held Thursday June 27th, awarding accolades in both international and New Zealand categories including Best Feature, Best Short, and Best Director. Sam Witters, Director of the University of Canterbury (UC)’s Kōawa initiative, a Doc Edge festival sponsor, is a juror for this year’s awards.

“Celebrating exceptional storytellers, including those from our own backyard, is an important aspect of the Festival and our partnership with Doc Edge as it encourages young filmmakers to push boundaries and be innovative, fostering the next generation of creators,” says Witters.

Together with some of the most diverse and accessible film locations in the world, Canterbury and Christchurch have a fast-growing capacity for post-production and scripted content, and with world class tertiary providers like University of Canterbury’s Kōawa initiative and digital screen investment, Ara Institute and YooBee, the future of filmmaking in Ōtautahi is certainly bright.

The 4-day pass including all events costs $399.00, industry partners $299.00 and students $199. A 2-day forum pass is $299.00, industry members $199 and students $99. For more on the industry events, find out more at

https://docedge.nz/industry/

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