What Are We Busy With?

Current Core Projects

The DFA works on several specific projects on its own or in partnership with others. These are key projects the DFA believes are valuable to our industry sector and that require more resources and communication than usually posted via the blog and newsletter.


Members Benefits

The DFA negotiates discounts and special deals for its members within the industry. More information



Doc Tour Training Workshops at Encounters 2018

Doc Tour 2018 is a one-day event organised by the Documentary Filmmakers Association (DFA) of South Africa in collaboration with Encounters South African International Documentary Festival aimed at young professionals and emerging filmmakers developing projects for the first time. The training opportunity is designed to assist filmmakers who would like to fine-tune their documentary projects in development or production phase to be better prepared for pitching at forums around the world. More information



Doc Tour Knowledge Share at Encounters 2018

First Aid for docs that aim to travel

Doc Tour 2018 is a one-day event in collaboration with Encounters South African international Documentary Festival. It is aimed at young professionals and seasoned filmmakers. In the morning is a training workshop with selected participants and, in the afternoon, a knowledge sharing forum. Following the half-day workshop for young filmmakers we will have an industry session to address issues that affect filmmakers. More information



DTI-Supported Delegations: Sheffield Doc/Fest

DFA Members had the opportunity to apply to attend Sheffield Doc/Fest 2018 as part of the DFA’s application to the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) Group Export Sector Specific Assistance Scheme (SSAS). Sheffield Doc/Fest is a film festival comprising; inspirational documentary films from across the globe; dynamic discussion panels and in-depth filmmaker masterclasses; a marketplace offering a unique way to pitch new and groundbreaking documentary projects; and world-famous parties. The delegation left South Africa on the 6th of June 2018 and departed Sheffield (UK) on the 13th of June 2018.  More information 



DTI-Supported Delegations: International Documentary Festival Amsterdam

IDFA is unique for its international film program, the variety of genres, its politically-committed programming and the many European and world premieres featured each year. Add to that the presence of many filmmakers, sizeable audiences, all the discussions and debates, workshops, master classes and the experienced staff, and it’s no wonder IDFA is the pre-eminent festival for creative documentaries. The Documentary Filmmakers’ Association’s mandate is to nurture and develop the interests of documentary filmmakers in South Africa. Supported by the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) Group Export Sector Specific Assistance Scheme (SSAS), the recent DFA delegation attending IDFA surely developed and empowered those attending the festival. More information



DTI-Supported Delegations: Visions du Réel 2017

South African cinema was at the heart of the Focus section of the 48th edition of Visions du Réel in 2017. Visions du Réel honoured many different shades of documentary filmmaking in its ‘South Africa, the ‘Rainbow Nation’. For the seventh consecutive time the Festival cooperated for the Focus section with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), this time to highlight the creativity and diversity of South African filmmaking, exploring personal, political and social topics. More information


Listen to DocStreet Radio

Doc Street Radio will podcast one-on- one interviews with South African documentary filmmakers, masterclasses, and open pitching sessions. At times, we will also engage audiences, academics and filmmakers on the constantly changing face of documentary cinema.



Creative Rights & Copyright Balance

This project has been ongoing with various partners and with the help of PIJIP since 2008, and continues to look at the balance between the right of creators and owners of that copyright, and the need to create new works, which might need to include certain material, under certain circumstances from other works.



Business Model Canvas

In partnership with the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) and the Canadian Film Center (Media Lab), the DFA offers training to both filmmakers and trainers in the Business Model Canvas to assist filmmakers to develop more comprehensive strategies for their film projects.  In 2012 Tina-Louise Smith (Accidental Films and TV) travelled to The Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in Toronto with the Documentary Filmmakers’ Association’s (DFA) delegation of South African documentary filmmakers. There she attended a four-hour workshop on how to apply the canvas to documentary film projects. Working under the auspices of the DFA, and partnering with the CFC Media Lab’s Ana Serrano and Orla Garriques, Tina-Louise Smith of Accidental Films and TV and Orla Garriques of OG & CO Media designed a Business Model Canvas programme for South African producers. In 2014 the pilot programme was solidified and delivered at the 2015 Durban FilmMart.




Perspective is a Documentary Filmmakers’ Association (DFA) initiative that aims to provide insight into the documentary filmmaking process for those filmmakers who are struggling with their ideas and how to approach the creative process of crafting a film from inception to final product.

We would like to move beyond questions around content only and probe the craft of filmmaking through understanding creative and technical decisions – which are always tied up with content.



My Town Short Film Competition

In 2009 the Documentary Filmmakers’ Association, in collaboration with the Encounters Documentary Festival launched the MY TOWN short documentary competition.  The completion was a big success and helped identify and build relationships with young filmmakers.The short film competition is directed at filmmakers from across the country. The brief of the short film competition relates to how the town we come from or live in shapes who we are. In this short 3 minute documentary competition, filmmakers, aspirant filmmakers, artists and students are invited to make a short 3 minute documentary titled “My Town”.