A professional script- and project-development program for creative teams and aspiring script consultants who believe in the importance of teamwork
MIDPOINT Feature Launch 2021
Nine promising feature film projects
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.
Leave the Door Open
What It Feels Like For a Girl
The next generation of European film professionals
Script Consultant Trainees
Company Time - Guest Producers
Inspirational professionals with a passion for sharing their experience
To ensure the most comprehensive approach to training, Feature Launch works with established and respected names from all over the European industry.
Head of Studies
The Group Leaders oversee the development of projects in their group from the very beginning of the of the program through graduation. They also coach the script-consultant trainee trainee assigned to their group.
Script-consultant Trainee Mentor
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.
These established professionals are usually present at at least one of the workshops to share their expertise.
Casey Cooper Johnson
KVIFF & MIDPOINT Development Award
A joint financial award of MIDPOINT and the Karlovy Vary IFF of 10,000 EUR for the best project of the Feature Launch 2020 program underlines the aim of the program itself – help emerging talents from Central and Eastern Europe to develop their film projects.
Awarded project: Head Nurse
Special Jury Mention: ALIYA
connecting cottbus Award
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: The Bomber
Rotterdam Lab Award
One producer will be handpicked to participate in the professional training program for producers, Rotterdam Lab, which takes place during the International Film Festival Rotterdam.
Awarded producer: Aleksandra Aleksander
Comprehensive program combining various formats
The nine creative teams, split into three groups, work under the guidance of internationally renowned and experienced tutors and in close collaboration with script-consultant trainees, who are involved in all parts of the program.
The workshops consist of group work, plenary sessions, inspiring masterclasses and case studies which offer a deeper understanding of the creative aspects involved in the work, as well as insights into financing, sales, festival and distribution strategies. There are also one-on-one meetings with guest tutors and international experts from different areas of the audiovisual industry to help participants to further develop their projects.
Script-Consultant TraineesPreparatory SeminarFebruary 18–20, 2021 | online
Script consultant trainees are briefed and given some introductory training by their mentor. The aim is to become acquainted with the mentor, the group leaders and the projects, and to learn the fundamentals of script consultancy.
All participantsKickoffFebruary 24–26, 2021 | online
The aim of this session is to to become acquainted with the tutors, the fellow participants and the methodology, and to begin work on the scripts and set up the dynamics within the groups.LecturesMessage in a Bottle
Pavel JechFebruary 24, .2021, 4:00 p.m. | online
The forced isolation of the ongoing pandemic has changed the way we interact and connect. But connection remains an essential human impulse. Many of us now live like castaways on deserted islands. Our recourse for connection is limited, but we do not cease in our efforts to reach out. Like a castaway we find any means to reach the outside world. A Message in a Bottle.
Screenwriters have always had to negotiate a balance between the needs of solitary creation with the imperative of collaboration and teamwork. The balance is different for every project, but the goal is always the same, making sure that your communication is clearly received.
In this lecture, we share some Messages in a Bottle from your core tutors, key steps and pointers they would like you to know as you navigate the development process towards creating an engaging cinematic story.How to Set Your Mind to the Story You Are Writing?
Gyula GazdagFebruary 25, 2021, 5:15 p.m. | online
The process of preparing for writing a screenplay may involve different ways to conduct research and to set our mind through different exercises and practices to the focus and understanding what our story calls for and what our characters may tell us.Project Development – A View of the Producer
Danijel HocevarFebruary 26, 2021, 10:00 a.m. | online
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 sometime 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 European perspective.
All participantsOnline ConsultationsMarch 2021 | online
All participantsWorkshop 1: Script-development & Financing StrategiesApril 17–22, 2021 | onlineTeams with projects
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.Script-consultant Trainees
The trainees are trained by both their mentor, who supervises their entire learning process, and Feature Launch tutors, who help them understand the different approaches and strategies they use while developing feature-film projects. Each trainee is assigned to one of the three groups, and works closely with their mentor 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 important, learn how to give constructive feedback to the creative teams to help them move forward in their development.LecturesMasterclass: The Writing Process of NASHVILLE
Joan TewkesburyApril 18, 6:30 p.m. | online
Written by Joan Tewkesbury, directed by Robert Altman.European Film Financing Sources
Danijel HocevarApril 19, 10:00 a.m. | online
The plenary lecture of Danijel Hocevar will explore the main characteristics and different possible financing sources for film and audiovisual production, available in Europe today, from public support to market sources and from fiscal / tax incentives to private equity.Case Study: ZANA
Casey Cooper Johnson, Antoneta KastratiApril 20, 6:30 p.m. | online
Haunted by her long suppressed past and pressured by family to seek treatment from mystical healers for her infertility, a Kosovar woman struggles to reconcile the expectations of motherhood with a legacy of wartime brutality.
An Albanian woman, Lume, lives with her husband, Ilir, and mother-in-law, Remzije,in their small Kosovar village. Haunted by night terrors, childless and unable to get pregnant, Lume is relentlessly pressured by Remzije to fulfill her wifely duties – if Lume cannot produce a child, her mother-in-law threatens, it will be Remzije’s responsibility to bring in a younger and more eager prospective wife for her son to consider.
Bowing under the pressure of being replaced, Lume concedes to abandon modern medicine and seek the help of witch doctors and mystic healers to treat her infertility. Lume’s appointments, first to a local witch doctor and then to a famed (and costly) televangelist-healer, do seem to yield results as Lume finds herself pregnant at last. But while the family celebrates, Lume’s long-suppressed traumas from the war slowly rise to torment her again, convincing Remzije and Ilir that Lume is possessed by evil spirits, and extreme caution must be taken to protect the unborn child.Case Study: LOOKING FOR VENERA
Besnik Krapi, Norika SefaApril 21, 2021, 4:00 p.m. | online
Calm, taciturn teenager Venera lives in a small village in Kosovo. At home, three generations are constantly under one another’s feet in their cramped house, so she has hardly any privacy. Outside too, on the streets and in the café, it’s not much better: the village is small and there’s always a brother, nephew or neighbour keeping a beady eye on her. A girl is expected above all else to protect her good reputation – and that of her family.
All of which makes it difficult for Venera to go her own way. Her spirits are lifted when she makes friends with rebellious Dorina, who already has a boyfriend. The two girls go out having fun together, as far as Venera’s father allows. One thing they know for sure: they don’t want to end up like their mothers. “I’ve never even seen my parents kiss”, Venera says.Gift Service: How to "Sell" a Film Project?
Katarina TomkovaApril 22, 2021, 10:30 a.m. | online
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.
All participantsOnline ConsultationsMay–June 2021 | online
All participantsWorkshop 2: Pitching Training & Industry InsightsJune 28-July 3, 2021 | onlineTeams with projects
This workshop serves as a platform to further advance the scripts, while also incorporating marketing and sales strategies into the development process. It also includes intensive and critical training about how to present and promote projects, including the basics of business development and sustainability.Script-consultant Trainees
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.LecturesHow to Pitch Your Film - 6 Questions for the Pitch
Gabriele BrunnenmeyerJune 28, 2021, 10:30 a.m. | online
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.Dos And Don'ts With Sales Agents
Marcin LuczajJune 30, 2021, 10:00 a.m. | online
This plenary will address issues of working with sales agent. New Europe Film Sales is Warsaw-based directors' driven boutique sales and production company where Marcin Łuczaj acquisitions. Where and when to find a sales agent? What's the role of a sales agent in various stages of your project? How to find a right sales agent for your film? How to prepare for your premiere? DOs and DONTs in working with sales agents, festival strategies, marketing and pitches at parties.Marketing Is Your Friend: An Introduction to Film Marketing
Christina PelekaniJune 30, 2021, 1:00 p.m. | online
For filmmakers, marketing is probably the last thing that they want to consider. Not anymore. Nowadays, filmmakers are responsible for the marketing, sales and distribution of their project.
The lecture will focus on the 3 valuable C’s, which in marketing terminology stand for Consumer, Convenience and Communication. There will be presented the “secret weapons” of marketing – positioning, benchmarks, strengths & challenges, definition of target audience; distribution models, film marketing in the digital age, plus useful tips for creating the best possible promotional materials in order to stand out from the clutter, will be also part of the presentation.
One of the lecture’s objectives is to help the producers think both like a film business investor (B2B) and a fan (B2C).
The goal of the plenary is to point out to the producers that marketing is truly their friend.Transforming Companies
Linda Beath, Ada SolomonJuly 1, 2021, 10:00 a.m. | online
Linda Beath interview with Ada Solomon organized in partnership with EAVE.
All participantsWorks in Development - Feature LaunchJuly 28, 2021 | online, within Eastern Promises Industry Days of KVIFFTEAMS WITH PROJECTS
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 follow the presentations.
The program's awards are handed out at this event.SCRIPT-CONSULTANT TRAINEES
The trainees are also presented during the showcase to the audience of industry decision makers, including funders, sales agents, producers and festival programmers. Networking opportunities at the event may bring dividends for future careers.
All participantsOnline ConsultationsSeptember-December 2021 | online
ProducersCompany TimeJanuary 22-27, 2022 | Trieste, Italy
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 Linda Beath, an expert on project financing and strategic business planning who advises both European and international producers. Her areas of expertise also include public policy and new business models relating to digital media.
Over four days, participants will enhance their entrepreneurial skills, analyze their own companies, and receive feedback from both Linda and renowned experts from the industry, who have experience working both inside and outside Central and Eastern Europe.
In addtion, 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.
After the workshop, participants have the opportunity to follow up with an expert online, to discuss the individual strategy for their company further.LecturesScreen Companies - Survive or Thrive?
Linda BeathJanuary 7, 2022, 2:00 p. m. | Online
Online preparation plenary for the Company Time workshop in Trieste, Italy.
A sampling of our successful alumni
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.
Dark and haunting psychological drama about the collision of modern day faith healers and post-war trauma of survivors in Kosovo.
A father and a son from Crimean Tatar family transport the body of deceased older son and brother from Kyiv to bury him in Crimea.
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.
History of Love
Seventeen-year-old Iva is in the process of coming to terms with the death of her mother. Influenced by this deep personal loss and by the discovery that she didn’t know everything about her mom, the girl slowly immerses herself into a strange, almost dreamlike world far from reality.