IDFAcademy during IDFA

    An intensive training program for emerging documentary filmmakers and producers

    Taking place every November during IDFA, IDFAcademy gives emerging international filmmakers the opportunity to meet a broad spectrum of highly esteemed documentary professionals willing to share their knowledge of the industry.


    During this intensive training program, participants gain up-to-date market knowledge of the documentary industry and learn first-hand about the current trends in documentary filmmaking. Trends and models in various parts of the world are dealt with to ensure that participants develop a broad view of the sector. The program consists of masterclasses of well-known directors and smaller sessions on subjects like outreach and distribution.

    IDFAcademy during IDFA 2021 is set to take place in person, with activities and meetings happening on site in Amsterdam. To ensure that all participants can attend, our staff are working on an alternative, online IDFAcademy program specially for participants who are unable to travel.

    In both cases, fewer participants will be selected in 2021 than in previous years, allowing for more close-knit discussions, round tables, one-on-ones, and meetups.


    IDFAcademy is open to directors and producers making their first or second film, who have proven their talent on a national scale and would like to expand their career internationally. Film students are not eligible for IDFAcademy. Although the program is not project-driven, participants should have a project or finished film during their attendance. This ensures that participants are constantly applying the general knowledge and advice to their own documentary during the four day program.

    Practical information

    • IDFAcademy will take place between Thursday, November 18 and Sunday, November 21.
    • There will be an alternative online IDFAcademy program between November 16 and 25 for participants that are unable to travel due to COVID 19 regulations.
    • The accreditation deadline is September 1.
    • Selection will be made mid-October.
    • The IDFAcademy pass is €200 excl. 9% VAT.

    For more information about IDFAcademy, please email

    More about IDFAcademy during IDFA

    IDFA Film Student Route

    Every year, IDFA and the Netherlands Film Academy organize the IDFA Film Student Route: a tailor-made program for film students from film academies and film schools. This is an inspiring route through the IDFA program that includes the latest developments in today’s international documentary industry. The IDFA Film Student Route includes, among other activities, the IDFA Film Academy Day at the Netherlands Film Academy, films from the IDFA 2021 program with Q&As, extensive masterclasses, and network opportunities with international film students and professionals. Attending students and teachers also receive a special group discount on the IDFA Guest Pass.

    Is your film academy or film school interested in attending the IDFA Film Student Route in 2021? Then please contact IDFAcademy Producer Dymme Plomp at

    IDFA's talent development program is made possible by The Netherlands Film Fund, Creative Europe Media, NPO Fund and Videoland.

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