Australian International Documentary Conference 2017 Announces First Line Up!

OJ Made In AmericaHitting Melbourne from 5 – 8 March, 2017 at the salubrious Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) is the inaugural Australian International Documentary Conference (AIDC) and the first round of participants and films have been announced. It’s an innovative and features soon to be Oscar winner Ezra Edelman and his outstandingly forensic 7.5 hour epic O.J.: Made In America. John Battsek (Restrepo, Listen to Me, Marlon) will also be attending alongside Amy Hobby (What Happened, Miss Simone?). Check out the media release below!






The Australian International Documentary Conference (AIDC) today opens registration for its 30th Anniversary event with the announcement of John Battsek (UK), head of Passion Pictures and producer of One Day In September; Amy Hobby (USA), producer of What Happened, Miss Simone?, and Ezra Edelman (USA), director and producer of O.J.: Made in America, as keynote speakers for AIDC 2017, taking place at Melbourne’s ACMI from 5 – 8 March 2017.

John Battsek’s producer and executive producer credits include the Academy Award-winning documentaries One Day in September and Searching for Sugar Man, as well as acclaimed films like Restrepo, Listen To Me Marlon, Sergio and The Imposter. He heads the Film Department of international production company Passion Pictures, and is currently producing Richard Lowenstein’s highly anticipated Michael Hutchence documentary, Mystify.

Amy Hobby is the current Vice President of Artist Programs at the Tribeca Film Institute, and is an Academy, Emmy and Grammy Award-nominated producer whose films include And Everything is Going Fine (IFC) directed by Steven Soderbergh, Shepard & Dark (Official Selection Cannes Film Festival), and Love, Marilyn (HBO) directed by Liz Garbus, with whom she collaborated again on her most recent film, the Emmy Award-winning Netflix Original doc What Happened, Miss Simone? Amy’s attendance is supported by the Embassy of the United States of America.

Ezra Edelman is best known for directing the critically acclaimed five-part documentary series O.J.: Made In America for ESPN. The series has been nominated for the IDA Best Feature Documentary Award, five Critics Choice Awards, five Cinema Eye Honors, and is in the running for an Academy Award. Other credits for Edelman include producing and directing Magic and Bird: A Courtship of Rivals, The Curious Case of Curt Flood, and the Emmy Award-winning Brooklyn Dodgers: The Ghosts of Flatbush for HBO; directing Requiem for the Big East, The Opposition and co-producing 2013 Academy Award-nominated feature documentary Cutie & The Boxer.

Both Ezra Edelman and John Battsek will participate in AIDC 2017’s opening Keynote session More Than a Game, about using the sports documentary genre as a unique way to explore power structures and racial discrimination in society. Amy Hobby will take part in a Keynote In Conversation session, For Your Consideration, about the experiences of documentary filmmakers on the festival and awards circuit in their quest for an elusive golden statue. Ezra, John and Amy will also participate as international mentors in the [email protected] early career mentorship program, which is now accepting applications.

These guests lead the first program announcement for a milestone AIDC, which in 2017 celebrates 30 years as Australia’s premier event for documentary, factual and unscripted screen content with the theme “Three Sides To Every Story”.

“Over the past three decades we’ve watched cane toads jump across Australia and onto world screens; we’ve seen a small family in Sylvania Waters redefine our understanding of ‘reality’ and we’ve witnessed a little conference that could, started by a handful of passionate documentary filmmakers, help us share our story with the world,” said AIDC Conference Director and CEO Britt Arthur.

“But that’s just (a fraction of) my side of the story. There’s your side. And then of course there’s the truth. It seems fitting that this should inform the theme for AIDC’s 30th and we’ve had fun exploring the “three sides to every story” as we’ve developed this year’s program. Now it’s time to start hearing your side … and maybe we’ll find the truth in there somewhere too!”

With sessions devoted to innovation, craft, business and impact, highlights in the first program announcement include:

  • Revolution or Evolution?, a session about the future of ‘serious gaming’ and virtual reality documentary with Navid Khonsari, creator of docu-game 1979: Revolution and designer of such AAA game titles as Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and Max Payne
  • Archival Revival, a Masterclass in which John Battsek and Richard Lowenstein (Autoluminescent: Roland S. Howard) reveal the art of making documentaries with archival footage. Featuring never before seen footage set to appear in the upcoming Michael Hutchence documentary Mystify
  • Desperately Seeking Distribution, a look at new distribution pathways for factual content with the people behind the hit ABC iView webseries Black As and refugee advocacy documentary Chasing Asylum
  • The second annual Impact Strategy Hack, featuring social impact experts creating impact campaigns for two film projects in a live session (presented by Documentary Australia Foundation)

ACMI & AIDC will once again co-present a series of curated special event screenings for conference delegates and the public, including:

  • O.J.: Made in America binge screening – a free screening of the entire 7.5-hour epic in the ACMI cinemas, open to a general public audience. It’s an exclusive opportunity to see the series on the big screen in Australia, featuring an introduction by director and producer Ezra Edelman (Co-Presented by ESPN)
  • Cane Toads, Interrupted – a special screening with live commentary from director Mark Lewis of the international cult classic Australian documentary Cane Toads: An Unnatural History, made in 1987, the year of the first AIDC. (Film supplied by the NFSA).
  • The Guardian documentary Shorts Showcase, a free public screening on the Federation Square Big Screen of a program of cutting edge short documentaries, curated by Guardian documentaries head Charlie Phillips (Co-Presented by the Guardian and Federation Square)

We are also excited to announce the first batch of high profile international decision makers attending for the AIDC Marketplace, including:

• Jules Oldroyd (National Geographic, USA) • Ryan Harrington (Discovery Communications, USA)
• Justine Nagan (American Doc / POV (PBS), USA) • Steven Burns (CuriosityStream, USA)
• Kate Townsend (BBC Storyville, UK) • Vesna Cudic (Dogwoof, UK)
• Philippe De Bourbon (Canal+, France) • Yoko Imai (NHK, Japan)
• Amy Hobby (Tribeca Film Institute, USA) • Charlie Phillips (Guardian documentaries, UK)

The decision makers will participate in structured networking activities designed to bring them face to face with filmmakers seeking project support. These include Speed Pitching, Roundtables, and AIDC’s one-day project pitching forum The FACTory, to be held in Federation Square’s stunning Deakin Edge on Tuesday 7 March during AIDC 2017. All decision makers can be found at

Stay tuned for many more sessions, speakers and decision makers to be announced in coming weeks.

A limited number of Super Early Bird All Access Passes for the conference will be available from 12pm midday on Tuesday 8 November from

Pitch submissions for The FACTory due Monday 12 December 2016.

Applications for the [email protected] early career mentorship program are due Tuesday 20 December.

AIDC 2017

5 – 8 March 2017, ACMI Melbourne, Australia

Super Early Bird passes on sale now

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