21 - 24 JUNE 2021 / EDITION N°32


Sunny Side of the Doc

#SSD18 They are looking for Arts & Culture programmes!

Jessica Raspe, Deputy Commissioning Editor – AVROTROS (The Netherlands)

For our slot devoted to documentaries about art, we are looking to buy and coproduce – both nationally and internationally – character-driven documentarieswhich focus on the lives of artists who have made their name in the past 40 years. We prefer stories which show them while creating their art but which also tell us something about their personal struggles.

We like stories to be told in scenes, maybe also with some interviews with artist, but with very little to no commentary. In The Netherlands, we keep an eye out for museum exhibitions featuring important young artists who might be interesting subjects for documentaries which we could coproduce. The Dutch museums themselves also know to find us when planning exhibitions which they think might be of interest to us.

In 2017, we have coproduced two documentaries about young Dutch architects Folkert de Jong (Folkert de Jong – Het zelfonderzoek) and Jennifer Tee (Jennifer Tee – Leaving Limbo). We coproduced together with Dutch production company Interakt and the films were made with funding from the Dutch Mediafonds (now defunct). The documentary about Folkert de Jong was also funded by the Dutch CoBO Fonds, which provides a lot of (partial) funding for Dutch documentaries.

At the time the film about Jennifer Tee came out, she had an exhibition at the Dutch CoBrA Museum. Also, a huge art work of hers was revealed in the main hall of the new metro station in Amsterdam. This way, current events related to Jennifer Tee were able to stimulate the audience’s interest in the TV broadcast of  the Jennifer Tee documentary.

Sharon Nuni, Head of Documentaries, Arts and Culture – ORF (Austria)

Due to a wide variety of program slots for documentaries, our department is able to address a diverse audience. For our Arts and Culture slot broadcasted directly after the weekly culture magazine, we are looking for short documentaries on art, culture as well as cultural trends and progresses. Our program ranges from classic artist’s biographies to short features about cultural movements and social topics. We try to draw a close focus on our audience’s interests, featuring a wide variety of films about national and international artists, as well as documentaries on historical and contemporary subjects.

In our main documentary slot “dokFilm” we broadcast Austrian as well as international films, from TV length to feature length. In this format we are dedicated to human interest and human stories, society and environment. We want to stay very close to the reality and the concerns of our audience – therefore we want to be character driven and emotional, trying to touch the heartbeat of the presence.

For other documentary slots we buy or produce occasionally – as for the prime time slot DOKeins or matinee. We produce and co-produce documentaries in Austria and are always in search of international productions to buy and pre-buy.


Emelie Persson, Head Commissioning Editor for Arts and Culture documentaries – svt (Sweden)

K special is svt’s dedicated slot for arts and culture documentaries. The slot has got an international reputation for its award-winning documentaries. Every single Friday night, prime time all year, svt broadcasts an arts and culture documentary. K special aims to bring the world best and most compelling stories, both national and international, to the audience. We’re looking for stories with in all the genres of arts and culture that surprise, seduce and provoke. To evoke curiosity, entertain and touch is of great importance.

K special has high ambitions with both narratives, characters, visuals. We broadcast a wide range of types of stories, both the classical portraits of the big stars and the more conceptual films on trends and tendencies within the field of culture. Our view on culture is that art is always looked at in a context of its time and society.

Example of films that we produced or coproduced within the years are among others: I called Him MorganSearching for Sugar ManIngrid in Her Own WordsMartha and NikiIn the Praise of NothingThat Summer.

Since svt as a whole is working with the strategy that makes online as important as broadcast, we pre-publish all documentaries at svtplay.se online on Sundays for the coming week. As we pre-publish, we send out a newsletter on all the documentaries for the coming week. Through this we have reached a new audience.  K special works actively with social media Facebook K specialInstagram @svtkspecial and twitter @kspecialsvt. We also try to reach new audiences by organising special events and previews. And we work closely together with the films festivals within Sweden and the Nordic Countries. Museums and Art schools are other institutions we try to work closely with.

Roberto Pisoni, Head of Sky Arte, – Sky Italia (Italy)

Sky Arte is the first and only 360° entertaining and educational channel focused on cultural content in Italy. The channel tries to have a new and original point of view on every art: painting, sculpture, literature, music, theatre, dancing, photography, architecture, design, cinema, comics. Sky Arte HD tells stories about the world of art with an innovative and contemporary language, far from the didactic approach. Versatile schedule, new formats and unexpected testimonials share with our viewers their passion for arts.

Production and programming highlights include international acquisitions, international productions for the three Sky Arts (UK, Germany and Italy) – as Master of Photography, Project Caravaggio, Italian Season, Artists in Love, Mystery of the Lost Paintings – all created and produced by the Sky Arts Production Hub, set in Milan and led by our team, plus local productions like Seven Wonders, Contact, Italian Masters, Unveiled Masterpieces and Fashion In Italy.

We are looking to buy and coproduce : documentaries or series focused on Italian heritage and classic artists, rockumentaries or performances by internationally-acclaimed musicians and series on rock legends, doc and series about archaeology and ancient civilizations with an unusual point of view and portraits or biopics of the iconic protagonists in politics, sports, cinema, literature and culture in general.

Leave a Reply

For security, use of Google's reCAPTCHA service is required which is subject to the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

If you agree to these terms, please click here.