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2014 iDOCS Progress Report

2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum Progress Report

(April Update)

All Dear Friends of iDOCS

After a two-year absence, we're pleased to announce the return of iDOCS in 2014! We are ramping up to the event with much planning and preparation to bring the world's top-documentary films to China. Whether a patron of documentary, cultural enthusiast, filmmaker, or student – we would like you to join us on this journey, or meet us at the event and get involved!

The 4th annual iDOCS International Documentary Forum will be held during December 12-16, 2014 at the Beijing Film Academy. In addition, we have intention to promote more documentary screenings to be held in more cities.

With our success in the past three years of iDOCS, we will continue the format with our highlight sessions - Master Class Workshops, Case Studies, Documentary Screenings, and the highly favored Trailer Park, where Chinese documentarians are able to provide a trailer and logline introduction of their work and then receive constructive feedback from the invited masters.

Among the honored guests for this year, you will have the opportunity to meet some outstanding documentary directors of recent films and an impressive history of filmmaking. Filmmakers invited to iDOCS have received worldwide recognition in the field of documentary films and seek to share their work with an eager Chinese audience.

Take a moment to view the list at iDOCS 2014 Films Currently Under Consideration For Presentation, or stills with links to video trailers of films currently under consideration at iDOCS 2014 Filmography, or 2014iDOCS Stills in Motion – Sneak Preview to see films that are currently under consideration for inclusion at iDOCS 2014.

However, before success and recognition came to these filmmakers, many shared the struggles inherent in documentary filmmaking, as most Chinese directors have experienced. Films often take years to complete, with uncertain budgets and shortages of financial backing. Location work can be difficult, as well as character selection. Finding the right team of producers, director, photographers, editors, and sound people can always be a huge challenge. But, as any documentarian will know, there is a spirit that drives them, a passion to their work, a willingness to succeed – to produce – that shapes an iron-will of determination to deliver their films as examples of their exemplary character as manifest in their extraordinary work.

We believe their films and their stories of perseverance and growth in filmmaking are valuable and encouraging for Chinese filmmakers. Besides conversations with these documentary masters, we also will welcome and look forward to having more young filmmakers who are facing similar difficulties in the production of documentary films as well as facing the new challenges that the field presents in the face of new technology, world events, and diversity of thought – even as the planet may seem to have become a smaller place. Whatever their particular case, their special story, they all come to share their successes and lessons learned with us in the near future of 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum.

If you work in the documentary industry in China, or are an aspiring filmmaker or film student, 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum is an event that you must attend!

Funding and support from individuals and organizations are also essentials for 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum. In addition to individual donations and funding initiatives and grants, we welcome more professional filmmakers, students, and patrons of culture, to participate in 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum and to secure the event by propelling it through its complicated process of planning, preparation, and financial support.

While documentary film has become more popular because of its honest appeal and ability for building bridges of cultural exchange, the dip in the world economy has made documentary filmmaking often to be a perilous pursuit. And despite an iron-will and keen desire to bring top-documentary films and filmmakers to China, iDOCS has also been hit hard by the downturn in the world economy that has yet to be revitalized to fuel the passions of documentary filmmakers worldwide.

Filmmakers suffer, and established and respected film forums such as iDOCS suffer. The financial crises put everything on the edge and an eager audience in peril of a not being able to experience a vital need. For instance, this year, the much respected International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA), a world-renowned supporter of documentary films has had to cancel its current offering of its Bertha Fund for Documentary Film Forums, like iDOCS. iDOCS had previously received a generous grant from this organization, which made previous editions of iDOCS possible. For 2014, this funding is lost. As well, film institute funding, and cultural initiatives previously established by governments have been greatly diminished. 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum needs your support.

Currently, 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum has received the following support:

Ø Location (sponsored by Beijing Film Academy)

Ø DVD of 60 award-winning documentaries in recent years submitted for government censorship

Ø Backstage reconstruction of new iDOCS official website

Ø Translation of film information of at least 10 documentaries

our volunteers are simply awesome

But, how can you help? There are various avenues of support and funding that are available at this time, and moving forward to a bright future.

Support 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum – How Can You Help:

Funding Opportunities (scroll down on web page):

Ø Become A Patron (ticket and professional activity passes will be available for purchase soon): Registration and purchasing film tickets and passes, not only allows more people to have opportunities to be involved in iDOCS 2014 activities, but also makes our iDOCS 2014 sustainable.

ü Buy a Ticket Package

o RMB 400/Package (500 Packages for Sale)

ü Register for Professional Activity

o RMB 2,500/Person (200 Passes for Sale)

ü Ads on Forum Brochure

o RMB 3,000/Page (3 Pages for Advertising)

Ø Provide Specific Funding and Sponsorship:

ü Funding for airfares for special guests

o RMB 12,000/person, 14 special guests(Total: RMB 168,000)

ü Funding for international round-trip express delivery fee for screening films

o RMB 1,000/film, 20 films(Total: RMB 20,000)

ü Funding for film subtitling

o RMB 3,000/film, 25 films(Total: RMB 75,000)

ü Funding for conference interpreting equipment

o Flat: RMB 20,000

ü Funding for conference interpreters fee

o RMB 8000/day, 5 days(Total: RMB 40,000)

ü Funding for vehicle rental and transportation

o RMB 3000/day, 5 days(Total: RMB 15,000)

ü Funding for Accommodation for guests in Beijing 

o RMB 600/day, 6 days, 14 persons (Total: RMB 50, 400)

ü Funding for publicity (prints and design)

o Flat: RMB 30,000

ü Catering Sponsorship

o 3 hours / night, 2-3 nights during December 12-17, 2014

In return for your generous support, the name's of individuals and organizations who sponsor specific funding items for 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum will be printed on Forum Brochures, Forum Posters, the back side of Film Tickets as will allow, and credited in ending title of all screening films as special thanks to you, and to be acknowledged by a grand audience.

Volunteer Opportunities (scroll down on web page):

Ø English/Chinese Translation:

Complete translation of film information and subtitles for 30 screening documentaries. (Job duration: Present – mid-September, 2014). The actual screening films would be less than 30 films after censorship through The State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television of the People's Republic of China (SAPPRFT).

Ø iDOCS Website Maintenance & Content Editor:

Content editing and updating (Job duration:Present - beginning of December, 2014)

Ø Graphic Designer:

Design Forum Poster, Forum Brochure (Job duration Present – October, 2014 )

Ø Art Editor:

Typesetting for Forum Brochure, Film Ticket (Job duration: Present – mid-November, 2014)

Ø Chinese-English Simultaneous Interpreter:

Interpreting for professional activities (Job duration: December 12- 17, 2014)

Ø Chinese-English Conference Interpreter:

Translation for Q&A session after screening, and providing assistance to special guests (Job duration: December 10 -17, 2014)

Hosting Opportunities (scroll down on web page):

2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum needs English-speaking hosts. Our former host for three years, Peter Wintonick, as an important supporter for iDOCS, died of illness last November, which was a huge loss for iDOCS.

Our hostess Ms. Melanie Ansley is currently studying film courses in California. We hope she will be able to come back to support iDOCS this year, but we are also currently looking for more candidates for hosts as backup plan.

Hosts need to have excellent English-speaking skills, notable experience in documentary filmmaking, and be of high character. If you know someone who fits these candidate requirements, please don't hesitate to contact us via

We look forward to having more friends who love documentary, supports us! With your support we hope the 2014 iDOCS International Documentary Forum will bring all participants a new and unparalleled experience in the many avenues of documentary filmmaking and achievement!

- Thanks to Zhao Zhuang for her proofing of the Chinese translation

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