DW Akademie Film Development Fund

Are you a filmmaker from Uganda, Tanzania or Ethiopia…

… who wants to develop a feature film idea? Are you looking for financing and training opportunities? Then you’ve come to the right place! 

The DW Akademie Film Development Fund offers a one-year fellowship program for filmmakers working on the development of their feature-length documentary, fiction or hybrid films.   

If you are selected, you will receive 10.000€ and will be matched with an experienced mentor, who will be by your side during the duration of the program. You will also have access to tailor-made training and networking opportunities. 

If this sounds interesting to you, please take the time to read through the descriptions of the program’s eligibility and its application process below.   

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Am I eligible to apply?

To be able to apply, you must fulfill two main eligibility requirements:

  • Be a citizen and a permanent resident of the country for which the call for application is open. If you are from the country but live in the diaspora, you are unfortunately not eligible.
  • Have a track record as a filmmaker. This means that we require that you have released at least one production either internationally or locally (e.g., theatrical release, screening in a national or international festival, TV broadcast, digital third-party broadcast, streaming/VOD).  This can also be a short film.

What is being supported?

Eligible formats are narrative, documentary or hybrid feature-length films (at least 60 minutes) currently in development.  

The fund focuses on the development stage of a film’s overall production. This is the phase for creating ideas, writing screenplays, acquiring financing, contracting rights, etc.  

Development activities eligible for funding include, but are not limited to: work on a screenplay; research (travel); production of a mood reel; participation in labs (lab and travel fees); acquiring financing for production (work on further funding applications, travel to festivals, etc.); location and/or character/protagonist scouting, etc.  

Is my project eligible to receive support?

Your project is eligible to receive support if:

  • It is a narrative, documentary or hybrid feature film (more than 60 minutes).
  • It is currently in development

If you are unsure whether your planned activities are eligible for funding, please contact DW Akademie: dw-akademie.film-fund@dw.com


DW Akademie Film Development Fund Ethiopia, Uganda and Tanzania

We would like to inform you that there will be no call for applications this year.
Stay tuned on our website, more information will follow!


Application and selection process

When and how can I apply?

The next call for applications from all three countries (Uganda, Ethiopia and Tanzania) opens on September 14, 2022 on this website! Deadline is October 26, 2022.

The application form (in English) and all supporting material will be available here on this website, and we will be organizing virtual information sessions during the application period where you can ask all your questions before applying.

Make sure that your application is complete, and you have read all supporting materials. Incomplete application will not be considered.

If you need support or have any questions, please contact us at dw-akademie.film-fund@dw.com

How are projects selected?

After the deadline, we will need around four weeks to evaluate the applications and to consolidate a shortlist. If your project made it on the shortlist, you will be asked to submit a treatment (eight pages max).

The shortlist then goes to an independent jury, which selects five projects from each country to be funded. For each country, we put together a jury of three international film professionals, with different people for each funding round.

We will inform the 15 selected filmmakers approximately 8 weeks after the application deadline. Please don’t contact us during the process, as we won’t be able to give you any information.

Required supporting documents

  • Summary of your proposed project (1 – 2 pages)
  • Activity schedule
  • Budget

Applicants who’s projects are shortlisted will be asked to submit a treatment (8 pages max.)