Creative incubator for fresh new voices.
An initial step for filmmakers who would like to learn the craft of episodic storytelling. The short-form series has established themselves as the great modern incubator of fresh, new voices of a generation of creators with something different to say.
Thanks to its diverse approach, the program caters for independent indie projects of solo creators as well as projects of creative teams.
The program provides you with all the necessary tools on how to write top-level storytelling for episodes ranging from 1 to 20 minutes.
For solo creators as well as creative teams
- experience the most efficient series storytelling format on the current market.
- develop your series concept, outline of the pilot script and season under the guidance of an experienced tutor.
- gain a deeper understanding of the creative aspects involved in the work, as well as insights into financing, and distribution strategies.
- access inspirational lectures and the possibility to receive tailor-made feedback from tutors during individual consultations.
- meet industry professionals thanks to the partnership with Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event
Three-phase short-form series development program
Three short-form series projects working in a group, each project’s development is overseen by experienced tutors, as well as ongoing peer-feedback by fellow participants.
Online pre-trainingNovember | Online
Aimed as an introductory meeting of selected creators of short-form series (up to 20 mins per episode) with a background in the audiovisual industry that want to shift to short-form series development.LecturesHistory of Web SeriesTBC | Online
Streaming video became possible in the late 1990s and, almost instantly, creators started experimenting new ways of telling stories online. From the original boom of the do-it-yourself webseries, to Hollywood comanies investing in the millions, online short form series have made the most of their creative freedom and the possibility to connect directly with their audience.
They have proven to be a unique opportunity for creators to curate their own voice and gave birth to a young, innovative and vibrant generation of news talents.
WorkshopNovember 16 - 22 | Tallin, Estonia
The workshop will help the participants define their series concept, outline their pilot script and season, and will train and explain the specifics of short-form series and the difference between long-form series in storytelling. Each project will receive a tutor´s in-depth guidance as well as peer assessment from fellow participants.
Smash Cut uses lectures, group work, and individual consultations as its methodological tools. The participants will also be actively writing during the workshop working days, under the supervision of the tutors.
The program is conducted in English.LecturesWeb Series - An Exercise in Narrative EfficiencyTBC | Tallin, Estonia
The episodic length of web series has tended to grown in recent years. Still, most web episodes fall between 5 and 20+ minutes. Their core audience watches them mostly on phone and computer screens, sometimes on the go.
For those reasons, web series need to catch the attention of the audience quickly – there are always millions more YouTube video waiting to be seen. Web series must deliver as much emotions, drama, comedy and thrills than TV episodes two or three times longer. They require an intense narrative efficiency : the shorter the set-up, the longer the engaging pay-off can be!Living room screeningTBC | Tallin, Estonia
Living room screening are a great opportunity to get together in an informal way and enjoy a selection of series that we can all watch and discuss.Finding the Right Partners - A Guide to Financing and Distribution for Web SeriesTBC | Tallin, Estonia
Web series offer great opportunities for storytelling. But how to bring those projects to life? This lecture will give an overview on financing and distribution models for web series, look at potential partners, platforms and networking opportunities and get you into the mindset for defining the potential of your project, identifying target audiences and developing a strategy to find the right partners.How to engage the audience in advanceTBC | Tallin, Estonia
YLE has been successful in creating short form dramas for teens and young adults. Two case studies will depict how Yle Drama is engaging young adults on Instagram, starting with the script all the way to the release of the series and beyond. Executive producer Hyppe Salmi is opening the development of a series called Horsey Love (working title), 10 x 20´series for young adults as well as opening the strategy of an Instagram account @areena.stories as a tool to research, pilot and find new talents.
All participantsOnline consultation
Inspirational professional with a passion for sharing experience
Sullivan Le Postec
What is a short-form series?
In the olden golden world, you might've known these formats as "web series". The world is changing, though, and to reflect that it is the length of an episode that matters, not the channel it is delivered on (television or streaming), these are now called "short-form series".
What is the length of a short-form series episode?
A few years back, these were ranging up to 10 minutes. There is a general tendency for the episodes to grow in length, that's why we are accepting anything up to 20 minutes.
I'm developing a 10-minute per episode online show. Am I eligible?
You are our dream applicant! Smash Cut is designed specifically for short-form series. So hurry up with that application.
I have an idea of a series but it's still early development. Can I apply anyway?
Absolutely! The sooner in the development process you apply, the better. Smash Cut will help you create your show from scratch.
Can I apply with an animation or documentary series project?
Sadly, Smash Cut does not work with animation or documentary projects, as these require a different set of skills and address a different market.
Does MIDPOINT offer scholarships?
Sadly, not for this particular program. We HIGHLY recommend to submit an application to a national organization (fund, institute, ministry) at the same time you're applying to MIDPOINT Institute. 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.
What exactly is a "series pitch" or "statement of purpose"?
You can find a detailed description on all the requested submission materials on the first page of your submission form. You can access the form once you've created a profile at the MIDPOINT Visitor Page (see intructions in the "Application" folder). No worries! You can save the form anytime you like and come back to it later, and you can also save or submit any number of applications you like!
I'm a writer. Can I apply myself?
Sure. That said, we generally support and recommend arriving in a team – either of writers, or a writer and producer. It simply makes the brainstorming and creative process easier and more effective, particularly when it comes to series. But you're most welcome to apply as a single writer as well.
Can I apply with more than one project?
Of course – but we'll only choose one. :)