Peer Pitch is an opportunity for documentary filmmakers to get and give feedback on pitches from their peers. This is not a pitching forum, but it's the pitch you want to attend BEFORE trying a pitch out at a pitching forum. It is all about getting and giving constructive feedback in a nurturing environment to help identify strengths and areas for improvement in trailers/samples and pitches.
This year, thanks in part to funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, there will be four Peer Pitch programs in the United States - in Northern California, Chicago, the Washington DC area, and a fourth location to be announced soon.
The first of these 2018 Peer Pitch programs is now open for registrations. This event will take place on Friday, March 23 from 10 am - 4 pm at the Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival in Northern California.
Now in its seventh year at the festival, Peer Pitch West will give up to eight documentary filmmakers the opportunity to present new projects to fellow filmmakers for feedback and for all attending to gain valuable insights and new connections which can guide their own filmmaking. Participation is open to any filmmaker who has a documentary project he or she would like to present. Projects may be at any stage of development, but each pitcher will only have 10 minutes to pitch (including time for showing any video material). Past Peer Pitch programs have included projects by very experienced filmmakers and first-time filmmakers. Pitching slots are offered on a first come, first served basis (and they often go quickly).
There will also be "observer" spots for filmmakers who want to give feedback to their colleagues, but don't necessarily have a project to share. Unlike other pitching programs, observers at Peer Pitch are very involved with the discussion, providing valuable feedback to the pitching filmmakers. Filmmakers whose films are in this year's festival can attend as observers as part of your festival pass (just contact Erica for the comp code to register).
Travel to Sebastopol is on your own. It's only 90 minutes north of San Francisco so is an easy daytrip for Bay Area folks (though we really encourage you to make a weekend of it since it is one of the most filmmaker-friendly documentary film festivals in the country and shows great films, including many by D-Worders. Not to mention, who needs an excuse to spend a spring weekend in Sonoma County?
A NEW OPPORTUNITY THIS YEAR
One other thing which is new this year is that six projects will be selected from all of this year's Peer Pitches to come to Washington DC in October (with travel expenses paid) to pitch in front of industry at the Double Exposure Investigative Film Festival. So not only can you get valuable feedback from peers, you may also have the opportunity to take that feedback, hone your pitch and your project, and then pitch again in front of festival programmers, funders, and broadcasters.
Find out more about and register for Peer Pitch West at http://www.docsinprogress.org/peerpitch We will be announcing more details on the other Peer Pitches in the coming months.
Questions? Contact Peer Pitch facilitator Erica Ginsberg at
Erica hopes to see you there! And stay tuned for news on the other Peer Pitches...
Doug Block - New York
John Burgan - Berlin
Peter Gerard - Brooklyn
Erica Ginsberg - Washington DC
Niam Itani - Istanbul/Beirut
Marj Safinia - Los Angeles
Paul Szynol - Brooklyn/Warsaw/Kampala
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