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About CIRCLE

CIRCLE is an exclusive international training program for women and non - binary directors and producers working in the fields of documentary and fiction filmmaking.

 

The program consists of the following formats and workshops: CIRCLE Women Doc Accelerator, CIRCLE Showcase @ Cannes Docs and CIRCLE Fiction Orbit.

CIRCLE arose from the need to support women and non-binary filmmakers and to create a safe space for them to consult, collaborate, share ideas and improve their skills with the support of leading experts in the film industry.

CIRCLE Women Doc Accelerator

CIRCLE Women Doc Accelerator is an annual training programme founded in 2018, open to up to 10 women and non-binary directors and producers who are developing documentary projects with strong international appeal.

 

The initiative consists of three modules, based on group work and shared among a carefully-curated constellation of participants and mentors. The group work is combined with individual consultations. 

 

In addition to group work and individual consultations, the CIRCLE methodology includes case studies and film screenings, Q&A sessions, introducing successful directors and their recent works. Within each module, chosen mentors hold masterclasses which are open to the wider professional community where the onsite modules take place, as well as online.

In just five short years, CIRCLE has supported 50 directors and producers hailing from 35 different countries. We often work with participants with projects in very early development, bringing them to the attention of the international industry, production companies and other training programs.

 

Out of all the projects developed through CIRCLE, 95% have either received international funding or premiered at some of the most prestigious film festivals around the world.

Some notable examples include: TWICE COLONIZED by Lin Alluna (World premiere Sundance 2023, opening film HotDocs and CPH:DOX 2023, Sheffield Docs 2023), LA SINGLA by Paloma Zapata (Opening film Thessaloniki Documentary Film Festival 2023, HotDocs 2023 Official Selection, Audience Award and jury special mention at Docs Barcelona 2023, Málaga Film Festival,  Raindance Film Festival, Ficci Festival, Krakow Film Festival, the Doxa Film Festival, Docs València and others), LIGHT FALLS VERTICAL by Efthymia Zymvragaki (World Premiere IDFA 2022, nominated for IDFA Best First Feature Award, Thessaloniki Documentary Film Festival 2023, Málaga Film Festival, DOK.fest München, Docs Barcelona and the Festival Internacional de Cine en Guadalajara) and THE ECLIPSE by Nataša Urban (World Premiere at CPH:DOX 2022, main DOX:AWARD for Best International Feature Documentary, Special Men3on International Competition - DokuFest Prizren, MakeDox Onion Award for Best Film, nominated for the European Film Award, DocLisboa, Nordisk Panorama Film Festival, IDFA Best of Fests, Jihlava International Documentary Festival and many others). This year, EVER SINCE I KNEW MYSELF by Maka Gogaladze received support from IDFA Bertha Fund and celebrated its World premiere at Vision du Reél, while the essay film XiXi by Fan Wu premiered in Hot Docs 2024, International Competition, receiving the Emerging International Filmmaker Award.

CIRCLE Showcase @ Cannes Docs

In 2020, CIRCLE Women Doc Accelerator entered into a partnership with Cannes Docs - Marché du Film. This was the beginning of the CIRCLE Showcase @ Cannes Docs. Since then, each year we carefully select four CIRCLE alumni participants, who have the opportunity to pitch their docs-in- progress during Cannes Docs to festival programmers, sales agents, and other decision-makers.

The selected projects consult with CIRCLE mentors so as to be well prepared for their participation in Cannes Docs. We work together on video excerpts and presentations while inviting professional editors to assist them on this important occasion, as well as support them in making the most out of the networking opportunities of this event, according to the needs of each project.

CIRCLE projects showcased in Cannes have gone on to achieve great success after the Marché, becoming strong presences on the international festival circuit. CIRCLE projects won the top awards at the Showcase in 2022, 2021 and 2020.

Previous winners include “Twice Colonized” by Lin Alluna, which won the Docs-In-Progress award in Cannes last year before premiering in Sundance and opening both CPH:DOX and Hot Docs; Ágnes Horváth-Szabó and Anna Nemet’s “Beauty of the Beast” (Nordisk Panorama Award 2020) and “Cent’anni” by Maja Prelog (IEFTA Docs-In-Progress Award 2021).

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CIRCLE Fiction Orbit

With the success of the five previous editions of CIRCLE Women Doc Accelerator, for the first time in 2023 we offered the pilot CIRCLE Fiction Orbit lab.
 

CIRCLE Fiction Orbit is an intensive one week residential workshop open to women and non binary directors developing their second or third fiction feature films.

 

A carefully-selected group will work with leading experts in order to identify their needs when developing their projects.

 

All participants will receive feedback on their script, legal aspects and production options, including the best strategic choices as well as psychological support during their creative process. The Fiction Orbit will build on the methodology and philosophy of CIRCLE Women Doc Accelerator.

Our Mission

Our Mission

Our main mission is to empower women in the film industry and increase the visibility of women authors and filmmakers in broader Europe and general.

Our goal is to provide our participants with tools for quick professional advancement, with a special focus on the development of the artistic potential of their projects.

Our Vision

To create a long-lasting network of women and non-binary directors and producers from all over the world, which will help and support them in their future artisitic work.

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