IBF Foreword

IBF Foreword


It is with great joy that we present an overview of the IDFA Bertha Fund activities in 2018. A year in which we met new filmmakers, travelled to new grounds as well as strengthened old relationships. We are extremely thankful to the Bertha Foundation for their continuous support that will guarantee that we can continue our work for the coming three years, until 2021.

The IDFA Bertha Fund supports independent, critical and artistic voices from Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and parts of Eastern Europe. The aim is to create a space for free artistic expression and support and safeguard critical and relevant filmmaking. At the same time, we want to foster the growth of local documentary industries and contribute to a more balanced representation and (co-) ownership of documentary narratives. Support is offered for the development, production and distribution of documentary projects by talented filmmakers from these regions. On top of the financial support the Fund plays a crucial advisory role as well and acts as a matchmaker and promoter of the supported filmmakers and documentaries to financiers, producers, sales agents and festivals worldwide.

In 2018, the Fund supported 30 projects with a total amount of € 552,057 in all its categories combined. Through the IBF Classic scheme 21 projects hailing from El Salvador, Bhutan, Mozambique, and Philippines, among other countries, received a grant for the development or production.

IBF Europe was no less impactful. With IBF Europe – International Co-production the Fund awarded six projects covering among other co-productions between Afghanistan and the Netherlands, India and Germany, Ukraine and Latvia. With IBF Europe – Distribution of International Co-production, the Fund selected the distribution plans for two documentaries from Egypt and one from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Come festival time, the Fund’s harvest was abundant: 15 IBF-supported films were realized, of which 10 made it into IDFA’s selection. Five IBF projects pitched at IDFA Forum, and seven IBF projects participated in IDFAcademy. Finally, two IBF-supported films won awards: the Special Jury Award for Feature-Length Documentary went to Los Reyes, and Kabul, City in the Wind took home the Special Jury Award for First Appearance, in addition to opening the festival. IBF films did well amongst the audience at IDFA and together reached almost 15.000 visits.

This report looks back on a year in which we were again inspired by the passion and perseverance of filmmakers to bring their unique, urgent, and beautiful documentaries to light. We're proud to present the results to you.

Isabel Arrate Fernandez

Managing Director IDFA Bertha Fund

Aboozar Amini (right) and Isabel Arrate Fernandez (left) watching selected scenes during the close reading of Amini's film Kabul, City in the Wind, at IDFAcademy 2018

Main partner of the
IDFA Bertha Fund

Bertha Foundation supports activists, storytellers and lawyers that are working to bring about social and economic justice, and human rights for all. Envisioning a society in which activists build collective power, stories come from many different voices, and law is used as a tool for justice.

By investing in the IDFA Bertha Fund the Foundation supports the global creative documentary field and films that make a difference. Rebecca Lichtenfeld, Director of Social Impact Media at Bertha, “We are proud to support the IDFA Bertha Fund, where we are consistently inspired by the depth and breadth of the projects. The Fund plays an important role in strengthening the documentary field globally and we are honored to be part of it.