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MIDPOINT TV Launch 2020

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This "idea-to-market" series project development program is the only existing residential, project-based training targeting and tailoring its content for the creative teams of emerging professionals coming from the Central and Eastern European region and the only program of this kind accepting both limited and ongoing, and both long or short form series.

Organizational information

MIDPOINT TV Launch is realized with the support of Creative Europe - MEDIA Programme of the European Union.

Dates and venues

Workshop 1
June 10 - 22, 2020
Online

Workshop 2
September 7 - 20, 2020
Online

Workshop 3
November 23 - 27, 2020
Online
in collaboration with Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event

Eligible countries

Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Republic of Serbia, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Ukraine

In case you're not sure about your eligibility, please contact us!

Contact person

Katarina Tomkova
Program Coordinator
katarina.tomkova@midpoint-institute.eu

Award

HBO Europe Award 2020

5.000 USD handed out by partner of the workshop, HBO Europe , to celebrate the Best Series Project of the MIDPOINT TV Launch 2020 program, within the online Awards Ceremony of Industry @Tallin & Baltic Event . 

 Awarded project: Afterparty

"An excellent program with excellent talent."

Steve Matthews
HBO Europe

Projects

The program focuses on participants primarily coming from Central-Eastern Europe, the Balkans, the Baltic countries and the wider Mediterranean area, with a possible background in filmmaking or with previous experience in TV writing, wanting to shift to quality production of series.

Afterparty

AFTERPARTY is a contemporary drama series that explores the world of Lucija and her best friends, Ruža, Maja and Iva, as they navigate through their late twenties while the political aspirations of ...
MIDPOINT participants: Maja Pek-BruenjesDora Sustic
Project detail

Agents

Novica Babic a dreamer and a charming manipulator organizes a fake contest for the admission of candidates to the regional center of Interpol in small Serbian town Smederevo. At no time is he able ...
MIDPOINT participants: Uros TomicUros TomicGvozden Djuric
Project detail

Black Square

5 Days of Life of Kazimir Malevich, a renowned Ukrainian artist, who fights the Soviet regime for the right to create art freely. Malevich presents his most provocative painting, The Black Square, ...
Project detail

Hotel Intercontinental

Welcome to the Hotel Intercontinental! We’re in 1970, Budapest, and nothing is what it seems. The hotel serves as a home for spies, counter-espionage, celebrities and small-time crooks. We see all ...
Project detail

Hugo & Co.

Welcome to a forgotten corner of Bohemia. Poverty is rife and local inhabitants often struggle with debt and property seizures. Enter Hugo & Co, a law firm intent on championing those robbed or ...
MIDPOINT participants: Gordon LovittTomas Plhon
Project detail

Lazlo

After her husband – an astronaut of a successful Soviet space mission in 1986 goes missing, Maria – a young nurse, embarks on a journey to find him by any means necessary. All tracks lead to a ...
Project detail

NOSTOS

On the NOSTOS, a patchwork starship carrying what’s left of the European-Union to a new home across the galaxy, everyone seems destined for a rootless life of blue-collar-labour until a jaded ...
Project detail

The Neighbours

Two neighbors and former bosom friends, became enemies, as have been trying to divide a common piece of land at the bordering area between Ukraine and Hungary.Their feud reaches its climax, as only ...
Project detail

The Red Princess

Austria, the end of the 19th century. The eccentric young Habsburg Archduchess Erzsi is a fixture of the most influential salons of Vienna’s rich cultural life. But when the "Mayerling incident” ...
MIDPOINT participants: Milos LochmanBarbora Namerova
Project detail

Participants

The entire development process is usually used as a platform to train the attending development executive participants, who are trained for their future role of broadcasters on real, existing series projects, acquiring skills needed for developing a diverse range of projects. With regard to the current coronavirus situation, the 2020 edition od MIDPOINT TV Launch is organized without the attendance of the development executive participants.

Tutors

Head of Studies

Gabor Krigler
Hungary  
Gabor’s career began in the writing staff of a daily serial at Grundy UFA in 1999. He became a Creative Executive at the Budapest office of HBO Europe in 2010, responsible for all creative aspects ...
Complete bio

Group Leaders

Gabor Krigler
Hungary  
Gabor’s career began in the writing staff of a daily serial at Grundy UFA in 1999. He became a Creative Executive at ...
Complete bio
Ben Morris
United Kingdom  
After studying drama at Bristol University, Ben’s first industry job was as a runner at ITV Studios Drama. ...
Complete bio
Cyril Tysz
France  
Cyril Tysz is a French screenwriter and head writer. After graduating from both La Sorbonne and UCLA film departments, ...
Complete bio

Director Tutor

Rumle Hammerich
Denmark  
Complete bio

Legal Tutor

Fabian Haslob
Germany  
Complete bio

Producer Tutor

Nebojsa Taraba
Croatia  
Complete bio

Financing Tutor

Marike Muselaers
Netherlands  
Complete bio

Pitching Tutor

Michaela Sabo
Slovakia  
Complete bio

Guest Tutors

Benjamin Harris
Germany  
Complete bio
Christopher Mack
United States  
Complete bio
Steve Matthews
United Kingdom  
Complete bio
Maggie Murphy
United States  
Complete bio

Experts

Luke Eve
Australia  
Complete bio
Christoph Fey
Germany  
Complete bio
Ben Harris
 
Complete bio
Till Kleinert
Germany  
Complete bio
Sullivan Le Postec
France  
Complete bio
Kirsten Loose
Germany  
Complete bio
Vratislav Slajer
Czech Republic  
Complete bio
Anna Stoeva
Bulgaria  
Complete bio

Methodology

Project methodology

MIDPOINT TV Launch spans over 8 months and focuses on the development of the 9 participating projects.

The projects go through a thorough and effective development process, and are built from the “bottom-up”: from a very early development stage, the creative teams are led to defining their series concept and theme and outlining their pilot scripts at Workshop 1, to completing their pilots and creating their season arc and season outlines, as well as pitching documents and a financing strategy at Workshop 2, to marketing and pitching their project and expanding their network at Workshop 3. The projects will be showcased and pitched within the Season Finale platform in Tallinn, Estonia.

The participants are divided into 3 groups per 3 projects, to ensure that all projects receive a significant amount of the group leader’s attention and guidance, but they will also have the option of receiving cultural exchange and feedback from their fellow participants. 

Further information

The workshop uses group work, individual consultations, tutorial analysis, lectures and pitching as its methodological tools. The participants will also be actively writing during the workshop working days, under the supervision of the tutors. Thus, participants leave the workshop with actual results and progressed materials. 

The working language of all MIDPOINT meetings and events is English, which is why a good knowledge of English is essential for participation.

Lectures

  • Lectures
    Lectures
    Case Study: Hausen
    Till Kleinert, Anna Stoeva
    November 27, 2020 | Online within Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event

    The MIDPOINT TV Launch 2016 graduates and the HBO Europe Award winners, Anna Stoeva and Till Kleinert, will talk about their journey on the recently released show and TV Launch alumni project, Hausen.

    Moderator: Katarina Tomkova
    Speakers: Anna Stoeva, Till Kleinert

    How to Talk to Global Streamers
    Christoph Fey
    November 26, 2020 | Online within Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event

    Experienced film and television lawyer Christoph Fey will guide the audience into the do's and dont's of negotiations and communication with global streamers, explain how to manage expectations, be aware of the potential decisions to make and outline a best practice.

    Speaker: Christoph Fey

    MIDPOINT TV Launch 2020 - Season Finale
    November 26, 2020 | Online within Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event

    Presentation of the 9 graduating projects of the TV Launch 2020 program, the so-called “Season Finale”, will introduce exciting series in development coming from Central and Eastern Europe which had gone through an intense training in the past few months under the mentorship of renowned tutors and experts.

    Moderator: Katarina Tomkova

    Creating Series From an Existing IP
    Ben Harris, Gabor Krigler, Ben Morris, Cyril Tysz
    November 24, 2020 | Online within Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event

    Whether it is a book, a feature film, a previous series, a real-life persona or a combination of several of these pre-existing ideas or stories, the development process of series based on an existing IP have some specific features that perhaps differ from starting a project from scratch. In this panel discussion, we'll be talking to Cyril Tysz (Skam France), Ben Harris (Young Wallander), Ben Morris (Mr Selfridge) and Gabor Krigler (Golden Life).

    Moderator: Katarina Tomkova
    Speakers: Gabor Krigler, Ben Harris, Cyril Tysz, Ben Morris

    The Pitch Realization
    Christopher Mack
    November 23, 2020 | Online within Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event

    (Closed session for MIDPOINT TV Launch 2020 & ScriptPool TV 2020 participants)

    This workshop will share with the writer some best practices on how to create and document their best version of a character driven series. By asking the right questions and looking at your series using the character's goals and motivations versus the plot, you will be able to create a professional looking pitch document that will allow a buyer to easily decide whether or not your show is right for their streaming service or network.

    Lecturer: Christopher Mac

    How to Make Short Form Series
    Luke Eve, Sullivan Le Postec, Kirsten Loose, Vratislav Slajer
    November 23, 2020 | Online within Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event

    The new digital era brought many new trends in storytelling, web series, also called short form series, being one of the most significant, bringing whole new perspectives and styles. Both major and independent content providers are exploring new ways to deliver original programmes specific to the digital audiences. Short form series are without any doubt an attractive audiovisual field that allures many talented creative minds. But what are the main differences between the short form series and other forms of storytelling and what to keep in mind while creating your own short form series?

    Moderator: Katarina Tomkova
    Speakers: Sullivan Le Postec, Kirsten Loose, Luke Eve, Vratislav Slajer

    Make Your Pitch Custom-Made
    Michaela Sabo
    September 20, 2020 | Online

    Whenever you do something from the bottom of your heart all the great energy you put in reflects in a form of an excellent result. There are no general rules that define a great pitch. The only rule is to know your story well and be able to have your heart present while pitching it. During her lecture, Michaela Sabo will guide the audience to find their strengths and weaknesses and make an advantage of both of them, to create a custom-made pitch. And last but not least, Michaela will give useful tips on how to overcome jitters, how to stay focused, how to find the core elements of the story and how to transfer it to the pitch audience.

    How the *** Do I Finance My TV Show
    Marike Muselaers
    September 14, 2020 | Online

    Marike Muselaers will discuss the process of entering the TV market and how to navigate the current landscape in this age of plenty. She will give examples of different ways to finance/package a TV series with international partners and discuss various TV business models. She will talk about how to stay true to your concept when (digitally or face to face) pitching to a variety of players, what to expect from possible co-producers, sales agents, broadcasters, platforms and financing partners, and last but not least: why it is so important to know both your audience and your industry.

    Roundtable for Producers
    Nebojsa Taraba
    September 12, 2020 | Online

    Many of us are already familiar with how to prepare and organize a feature film shooting and postproduction, but when it comes to series, it can be a slightly different process with its own specifics and rules. This roundtable will try to shed a light on the most important moments of the production that will help to achieve a satisfying result. Time is the key factor in the production of series and in order to find out how this “alchemy” of turning words in picture works.

    Roundtable for Writers
    Fabian Haslob
    September 11, 2020 | Online

    What is the position of a writer in the European ecosystem, what to look out for when it comes to contracts and which expectations to have, what possibilities of working in English there are for an Eastern European writer? We’ll discuss all this and more in a closed session where there are no bad questions with Fabian Haslob, representing the German-based Players agency.

    SHARED VISION - Working in the Creative Triangle
    Rumle Hammerich
    September 09, 2020 | Online

    Director, producer and writer Rumle Hammerich will talk about the importance of finding the theme, the core and the philosophy of the show and how this "shared vision" is the common platform for the writer, the producer and the director. The script and the money are almost two-dimensional or digital, but a TV series will eventually happen in the third and fourth dimension and this is the director’s focus: transforming the script into four dimensions. Rumle Hammerich will talk about the director’s role and responsibility in a TV series production. Trust is the major element in the creative triangle. One vision is death.

    So You've Written a Great Pilot...
    Steve Matthews
    September 07, 2020 | Online

    Steve Matthews, an experienced expert, now the Executive Producer of Drama Development at HBO Europe, will discuss the process from pitching your project through series development, production and beyond. What to expect, the stages in the process, the pitfalls to watch out for, and learning to love notes.

    Pilots - The Alpha and the Omega
    Maggie Murphy
    June 17, 2020 | Online

    Ms. Murphy will discuss the highlights of the most powerful and critical parts of your script… The beginning and the end. In this market of television where there are hundreds of shows to watch - how can you break out of the clutter. It is critical to hook the audience in the first 10 or 15 pages. This is the heart of your show… the make it or break it. Maggie will screen an assortment of iconic pilot openings and analyze why they keep the audience mesmerized. There will also be discussion on the ending of your pilot and how it must also be equally strong to bring the audience back for more.

    So, What Makes It a Series?
    Cyril Tysz
    June 15, 2020 | Online

    At the core of each series lies an engine, a central question, a central conflict that, unlike in a movie, must not be solved. Stretching a movie for 8 hours might not be the solution either, for a series is NOT a long film chopped into small pieces. So how do you provide the fuel to go beyond the pilot? What sustains the conflict and makes the audience want to watch the next episode?

    While in film, the legendary chicken and egg question of which comes first: the plot or the character remains unanswered, in TV series, CHARACTERS are the way to go: they are the reason we come back to watch the show.

    In this lecture, Cyril will study the specifics of series characters. How they have to be approached, how they must be combined and confronted with one another in order to sustain conflict and generate situations and scenes for a long time. He will also discuss how they affect the narrative specifics that are at the core of any series, whether procedurals or serialized, all that good stuff that makes a series – a series.

    Writing a Great Pilot
    Gabor Krigler
    June 14, 2020 | Online

    A pilot episode needs to serve many different needs. First and foremost, it has to be a great story itself but also must set up a long, ongoing narrative. We will be looking at the various elements necessary to introduce in a pilot to hook the audience and make them want more of your stories.

    Both Sides of the Table - Dealing with Notes
    Ben Morris
    June 13, 2020 | Online

    Wherever you’ve come from and wherever you’re going as a screenwriter, one thing is certain: notes will be coming your way! They will come from all angles: above you, below you, beside you… and even from you yourself, at all stages of the process. Ben will use his experience working on both sides of the table - in development/production and also as a writer - to discuss how to give and take notes in a way that is productive, collegiate and fun. Egos at the door folks because it’s all about the show!

    The DNA of Television Series
    Benjamin Harris
    June 10, 2020 | Online

    How do anthology, continuing and mini series work? And why should we care? Examining the formal structures and common story elements that compose the “DNA” of a series, we will look for the ‘engine’ that powers the storytelling in each series format. We will review clips from current shows to look for new trends in series writing. The goal of this seminar is to help you find the series format that’s right for your show.