A professional script- and project-development program for creative teams and aspiring script consultants who believe in the importance of teamwork.
The program targets creative teams with feature films in development & aspiring script consultants coming primarily from Central and Eastern Europe.
As the first film & series development platform in Europe, MIDPOINT Institute introduces within the Feature Launch program a multi-stage project selection process in order to be able to support more emerging talents.
From the applications, we will select approx. 20 projects, of which their creative teams will receive a detailed online assessment from two experienced professionals (script consultants and producers).
Based on this assessment, 9 projects will be selected for the Feature Launch 2023 program.
For teams of writers, 1st or 2nd time directors and producers
For script-consultant trainees
From all applications, the reading committee will select approximately 20 projects whose creative teams will receive a detailed online assessment from experienced professionals (script consultants and producers). After this session, the final 9 projects will be selected for the MIDPOINT Feature Launch program.
This workshop focuses primarily on creative development and dramaturgy while also introducing greater knowledge about other aspects of the industry, such as financing and market positioning.
Each trainee is assigned to one of the three groups, and works closely with the group leader and the participants on the development of their scripts. Trainees also meet regularly with their mentor to review their learning progress.
Through this process, the trainees are acquainted with the script and development aspects of developing a film project, enhance their communication skills during the creative process and, most importantly, learn how to give constructive feedback to the creative teams to help them move forward in their development.
A writer's freedom to make things up may seem like a simple way to determine what is true and meaningful within one's own story. But in the process of constructing their stories, writers often struggle with the fallacies – and even the truths – of their own making. As A.I. technology develops the ability to construct narratives, the issues that have always challenged writers come into renewed focus. This lecture explores how writers and their trainers can identify what is true and false within their own stories, and how to strive for clearer meaning in the development process... Or, maybe not.
In this lecture, Christian Routh will present some tips to screenwriters about how to confront the apparent paradox of being a screenwriter, in which they need to switch from a solitary introspective mode while writing, to a more outgoing gregarious mode when the time comes to explain and present their work to the industry. This duality requires certain skills that even the most introverted writer can acquire. The presentation will utilise some inspirational quotes from assorted artists through the ages to pass on some helpful practical advice.
What is the (right) role of the producer during project development? How to discuss the creative and other aspects of the project with your writer and director? How to convey a common vision of the future film and how to develop the same creative idea and avoid possible different views, approaches and sometimes even disagreements?
These are just a few questions each producer is addressing when developing the main idea of the project together with the director (and writer) during the development, usually the most creative process for the whole creative team. Part of the lecture will also be dedicated to the main characteristics of the development financing from the European perspective.
What is the position of a writer/director/producer in the European ecosystem, what to look out for when it comes to contracts and which expectations to have? We’ll discuss all this and more in a closed session where there are no bad questions with Rudolf Leška, an established copyright lawyer with international experience.
A case study about a second feature film by director Cristina Grosan premiered at Venice Days of the 79th Venice Film Festival.
A misfit teenager, an anxious mother, and a recent widow see their day interrupted by a mysterious natural phenomenon. As their world descends into chaos, the three women struggle to find their place in life.
Moderated by Katarína Tomková.
What written materials do we need on the long route of producing a film, who should be preparing them, and in which phase of the film's creation do we use them? Addressing all the do's and don'ts in a film package, Katarina's lecture will prepare the creative teams for the presentation and positioning of their project in an international context.
A unique masterclass will be offered by the renowned and award-winning Romanian producer Ada Solomon, who has over 60 film titles to her credit, including, for example, Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn (Golden Bear, Berlinale, 2021), I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians (KVIFF Crystal Globe, 2021) and many others. During her career, she co-produced with fifteen countries and is behind the film debuts of many contemporary European directorial talents, such as Marta Bergman, Chiara Malta, Federico Bondi, Adriano Valerio, Ivana Mladenovic, and Stefan Constantinescu.
Online individual consultations, group work, lectures focused on script/treatment development, financing and presentation skills.
Written by Joan Tewkesbury, directed by Robert Altman.
To pitch your project means to know everything about your project, to be aware of its strengths as well as of its weaknesses. The lecture will introduce in the essential elements of a pitch and underline the possibilities to include your specific vision in the presentation. A focus will be put on the elements that help writers, directors and producers to analyze the status quo of the project and to find a language to promote your current story to decision makers.
This workshop serves as a platform to further advance the scripts, while also incorporating intensive and critical training about how to present and promote projects. This workshop is immediately followed by the Works in development - Feature Launch project showcase at the Karlovy Vary IFF, where all nine selected projects are presented to an audience of industry decision makers, including funders, sales agents, producers and festival programmers. One-on-one meetings and further networking follow the presentations.
The program's awards are handed out at this event.
The trainees continue to observe the various stages of the development of the projects, through the final presentation at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival. They are present at the pitching training and rehearsals and also prepare their own presentations, as they'll pitch themselves as industry professionals during the KVIFF pitching forum.
Networking opportunities at the event may help them in their future careers.
Individual consultations, group works, master classes, lectures focused on marketing and distribution strategies including new formats.
This follow-up workshop offers participating producers support in the areas of company sustainability and strategic business planning. This training is designed and co-organized with our partner EAVE.
The workshop is led by Juliane Schulze, a strategic creative economy expert in business, finance, investment and sustainability, who advises European and international audiovisual companies as well as funding institutions and business agencies. Over four days, participants will sharpen their competitive advantage and enhance the viability of their businesses. Feedback rounds and individual mentoring sessions will offer direct support to tackle challenges they are facing as film professionals in an ever-changing marketplace.
In addition, this workshop is run in collaboration with the Trieste FF and within the frame of When East Meets West, which brings participants further networking opportunities through its industry program.
Participating projects are divided into 3 groups of 3, and development within each group is overseen by both a group leader and a script-consultant trainee.
To ensure the most comprehensive approach to training, Feature Launch works with established and respected names from all over the European industry.
The Producer Mentor oversees the development of all projects, advises them during the process regarding production and budgetary issues, and guides them through the European industry landscape.
The Group Leaders oversee the development of projects in their group from the very beginning of the program through graduation. They also coach the script-consultant trainee assigned to their group.
The Script-consultant Trainee Mentor co-creates the training for the script-consultant trainees, ensuring that this training is implemented organically into the group work and that the collaborative set-up simulates a real-life industry environment. He meets regularly with the trainees, providing feedback and support.
The Pitching Tutor prepares participants to present themselves and their projects, in general and for the final pitching session of the program.
Katarina Tomkova ensures each team develops effective promotional materials and positions their project in an international context.
These established professionals are usually present at at least one of the workshops to share their expertise.
Juliane Schulze leads the follow-up workshop for producer participants, mentoring them in company sustainability and strategic business planning.
A joint financial award of MIDPOINT Institute, Barrandov Studio and the Karlovy Vary IFF of 10,000 EUR for the best project of the Feature Launch 2023 program underlines the aim of the program itself – help emerging talents from Central and Eastern Europe to develop their film projects.
Awarded project: Flight from Kabul
A selected project from MIDPOINT Feature Launch will be given the opportunity to present itself during the pitching event within the connecting cottbus co-production market. Participation will include individual consultations from international film professionals and one-on-one meetings with potential partners.
Awarded project: Excavators
Vera is a middle-aged sign language interpreter, whose life is disrupted by her husband's suicide who has to face the raw reality of going against the deep-seated gender issues of our times.
Hana and Peter have created the world they longed for. They are young, successful and people envy them. They have built a successful company that shall soon provide them for the rest of their lives. Yet somewhere along the way, they got “lost”. Facing a relationship crisis, they decide to open up their marriage. They are allowed to do whatever they please, on the condition of being honest to one another. They define a new set of rules that on the outside seems like the pure freedom, but internally are slowly destroying them.
1983. Frank, an angry kid from the streets with "no future". The state banned their music because their words are political. Frank escapes to a psychiatric ward where Hanna, a young enemy of the system, joins him.
Anna is a 35-year-old single mother, working hard to provide a better future for her daughter Katia. A sudden turn of events makes Anna question her moral compass in a society where everyone has lost their own.
In 1983, communist Poland is shaken by the case of high school student Grzegorz Przemyk, who is beaten to death by police. The only witness of the beating becomes the number one enemy of the state.
Dark and haunting psychological drama about the collision of modern day faith healers and post-war trauma of survivors in Kosovo.
Boris Robič is, as we like to say, an ordinary man. One evening he gets brutally attacked at his home. The police arrives, and open the investigation. There are no suspects, and it seems that no one could possibly be interested in shooting Boris. The police eventually suspend the investigation, convinced that the shooting was a mere coincidence. Riddled with doubt, he starts investigating on his own. While searching for the potential perpetrators, we follow a tragicomic path of a man who discovers that more people hate him than he would ever have thought possible and that the perceptions that he has of his own life are nothing but illusions.
Sadly, Feature Launch does not work with animation or documentary projects, as these require a different set of skills and addresses a different market.
You can't. All these creative roles have to be present in your team. One person could represent more than one role (writer/director OR director/producer, etc.), or there could be two people representing one role (2x writer OR 2x producer, etc.). In any case, the team must consist of 2-3 people.
Feature Launch is specifically designed for European writers, as we'd like to address the demand for training coming particularly from this territory. The main focus is put on the region of Central and Eastern Europe. However, projects with a strong co-production potential or already attached partners/team members from this region can be accepted as well. In case you are still not sure about your eligibility, please contact the program coordinator Sona Morgenthalova.
Sadly, no. As the entire training runs in English, and during the working days you'll be asked to write directly in English, we require an intermediate level of these language skills. This simply means: your grammar doesn't have to be perfect, but you need to talk/write fluently and have the vocabulary to do so.
Quite honestly – a lot. Feature Launch is an intensive training, and apart from the assignments and work done during all residential and online workshops, it operates with a system of tasks and deadlines in between these modules. So clear that calendar up a bit.
It does. However, these are only partial, cannot be allocated to all participants, and their granting therefore considers various criteria. We HIGHLY recommend applying to a local supporting organization (national or local funds, ministries of culture or education, professional associations, etc.) at the same time you're applying to MIDPOINT Feature Launch. You can always withdraw your application if not selected, but as the processing time of this support can be rather long, it might be quite late to do this once we confirm you're in.
We only accept applications submitted through our Visitor Page. Firstly, that way you can be sure your e-mail doesn't end up in junk, and secondly, all submitted materials are distributed to the selection committee via the Visitor Page (please see the 'Application' section).