Astra Film Lab is a project development program for filmmakers to develop and strengthen their creative documentaries. It is a four-day project-based intensive program, taking place concurrently with Astra Film Festival, consisting of workshops, mentoring from industry experts, one-to-one meetings and a public pitch to an audience of industry representatives. Astra Film Lab emphasizes projects and teams from the region, aiming to facilitate exchanges within Europe and beyond. The goal of the program is to offer an auspicious platform to filmmakers currently developing internationally relevant stories that originate in the eastern part of Europe to present their work and develop professional networks.



We are looking for feature-length creative documentaries, irrespective of genre, style or subject matter.

The selection will be based on a number of criteria, including but not limited to the artistic quality of the projects and their international potential. Our aim is to offer support to directors/ producers who prove they have the capacity to complete the project, yet who need further industry support to bring their visions to fruition. 

Priority will be given to projects from Albania, Belarus, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Republic of North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Ukraine.



The Lab is tailored for professional director/ producer teams. Projects without a producer attached will be also considered. A maximum of 2 people per project can participate in the Lab. In some cases, projects can alternatively be represented by the cinematographer, editor or another member of the team, but either the director or the producer must represent the project during the Lab.

During the Lab, tutors will give advice and feedback specially tailored for the directorial and production aspects of each participant project. This can include, but is not limited to the following topics: narrative structure, character development, project budgeting, and how to structure a project presentation to ensure maximum efficiency.

Following the workshops, each project will be presented in a public pitch to an audience of industry experts of  producers, distributors, festival representatives, commissioning editors, or sales agents. Each project also gets a chance for one-to-one meetings with Astra Film Festival accredited industry guests. Only those team members who have taken part in the workshops can attend the pitch and one-to-one meetings.



This year, Astra Film DokTank will happen online. This does not change the submission and selection process, but all the activities of the Astra Film Lab will have to be adapted to the online environment. We shall provide all the necessary practical information in due course.



To be considered, applicants should complete this form.

Please be prepared to supply the following:

    • A logline;
    • A synopsis;
    • Director’s note;
    • A trailer (with English subtitles);
    • Details of the director, producer and any other key crew member(s) attached to the project;
    • Portrait photo of the director and producer;
    • Stills from the film;
    • A link to a director’s reference film/ project;
    • Details about the budget, sources of funding (in Euro).

All information must be supplied in English

Applicants are encouraged to supply all information they deem important for their project, including but not limited to details of the project team.

The deadline for applications is 24 August 2020.



To be considered for selection, the applicants must complete the online application and upload the requested video material. A total of 10 projects will be selected and invited to participate in Astra Film Lab. In some cases, the organiser can select either more or less than 10 projects. Successful applicants will be required to attend all activities. 

The selection results will be communicated in September 2020.

The decision of the selection committee is final and no correspondence will be entertained on the subject of the results. 

The selected projects will be published in the Astra Film DokTank Catalogue, which will be distributed to all the experts participating in our industry program. We will use the information supplied on the application form and only minor changes and updates can be accepted after the selection results have been made public. 


Astra Film DokTank, Astra Film Festival’s industry program, mirrors the ambitious mission of the festival to explore and understand the human condition through portrayals of culturally diverse contemporary societies and presents a favourable environment for a range of networking and project development opportunities. The aim of the program is to encourage the development and growth of Romanian and European documentary industry. Since 2016 Astra Film Festival has taken a proactive role not only in presenting to audiences diverse and exciting experiences of immersive – real and virtual – reality, but also in the development of projects, and the productive encounters between filmmakers, both established and emerging, film students, producers, distributors and buyers, festival representatives, or other industry experts from Europe and beyond.

For every edition, Astra Film DokTank selects and promotes projects in all stages of development, providing a platform for filmmakers to interact with industry experts and potentially find partners for their work. Besides the focus on projects in development, the program also includes a variety of talks, presentations and roundtables on current conditions of production and distribution of documentary formats.