FROM AN IDEA TO A DOCUMENTARY 11 June – 17 July 2021


Call for submission for the pitching lab of the “Beyond Borders” International Documentary Festival

Launched in 2016 by the Hellenic History Foundation (IDISME) in Athens co-organized with the Region of South Aegean and internationally supported by the Association Ecrans des Mondes in Paris, “Beyond Borders” is an international documentary festival held annually in August (this year, from August 22 to August 29) on the frontier island of Castellorizo in the Aegean Sea. The festival’s main objective is to give prominence to outstanding documentaries about societal and historical topics. Documentaries from all over the world are welcome, yet there is a special preference for films addressing crucial issues from the region of Southern Europe, Asia Minor and the Middle East.

In line with this, “Beyond Borders” is excited to carry on and expand its pitching lab, called “From an Idea to a Project”. The lab’s main objective is to offer aspiring ‘young’ filmmakers of the region the opportunity to present a basic idea of theirs for a documentary to an experienced panel of producers and broadcasters working in the European documentary scene. In turn, each participant receives professional feedback in how to turn his/her idea into a valid project, which is ready to be presented to the wider documentary community. Each project is provided with a 15’ slot, including a 3-5’ presentation and 10-12’ for questions and discussion.

In order for the lab to be accessible to as many filmmakers as possible, it is held as a visio-pitching lab using Zoom technology and it does not require from the participants a trailer for their project, or any ground founding. The originality and potential of the idea are the prime criteria for project selection.

What is required for participation is a simple submission form (see attachment) that should be filled out by candidates and submitted to [email protected] .

The following information is required: intended title, intended length, genre and style/mode of the documentary, description of the idea in one sentence, brief description of the film’s main characteristics (locations, main characters, possible events, archives etc.) and the candidate’s short bio.

There is no submission fee. Deadline for submission is July 17th, 2021. The selection committee will select a total of 20 projects (plus 5 reserves). Selected candidates will be informed by 15th August at the latest. Please, note that all participants must be available on Zoom during the festival week (22-29 August 2021).

From an Idea to a Project

Visio-pitching Club 2021 during the Beyond Borders Festival in Castellorizo

This second year, we are excited to continue and extend the Beyond Borders Visio-Pitching Club festival held in Castellorizo, Greece between the dates Aug 22 to 29, 2021. The objective is to offer ‘young’ European filmmakers the opportunity to present their basic idea to an experienced panel of decision-makers working in the European documentary arena. Those who are offered the opportunity to pitch their idea will receive professional feedback in how to turn an idea into a valid project. It will offer the opportunity to hone your idea into a package/a pitch that can be presented to any and all in the documentary community including broadcasters. It will greatly assist in the search for partnerships, subsidies, development and/or production funds.

Each Pitch runs for 15 minutes, with 3 minutes to present the idea, and 12 mins for questions and discussion. Candidates will please submit their idea on the present application form, available on the website of the festival ( and the sites of its organizers ( and ( There is no submission fee. Deadline for submission is July 31st, 2021. Selected candidates will be informed latest by Aug 15. They must be available on zoom during the festival week. The Information required is as follows:

INTENDED TITLE: _______________________________________________________________

DESCRIPTION OF THE IDEA IN ONE SENTENCE (I want make a documentary about….):



SKETCH HERE (or on added document) THE MAIN CHARACTERISTICS OF THE PLANNED FILM (protagonists, locations, events, archives, seasons…):



INTENDED STYLE (please tick):

O observational.      O investigative        O creative  O educational O Other:_____________

INTENDED LENGTH (please tick):

O Short (less than 30 mins)   O Medium length (between 31 and 60 mins) O feature length: (61 mins and more)

INTENDED GENRE (please tick):

O Arts, Music, Culture  O Current affairs, Journalism O History.     O Human Interest, Sociology

O Science, Education   O Nature, Travel, Discovery  O Human Rights   O Other: ___________






I herewith authorize the Beyond Borders Festival to discuss this idea in public, during a pitching session should they wish to do so. The festival cannot be held responsible for any exploitation of the idea by third parties. No pitch party is obliged to offer their work to anyone who is on the panel for this year’s 2021 festival.