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Institute of Documentary Film’s Activities

Founded in 2001, INSTITUTE OF DOCUMENTARY FILM (IDF) is a non-profit training and networking centre based in Prague, Czech Republic, focused on the support of Central and East European creative documentary film and its wider promotion.

We work closely with Central and East European film directors and producers and provide in-depth development support for their projects as well as international promotion.

We also work with key international festivals, broadcasters, distributors, sales agents, markets, film institutions, film schools, MEDIA Desks, training programmes, national film centres and various film portals, and serve as the GATEWAY TO EAST EUROPEAN DOCUMENTARY FILM – an indispensable source of documentary projects and films from Central and Eastern Europe.

Toys in Riga

This year’s Ex Oriente Film 2011 participant Lina Lužyte successfully pitched at Baltic Sea Forum for Documentaries 2011, a platform open to producers from Baltic States, Poland, Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, Belarus and other countries of the region. Her documentary-in-progress titled Toys was among the projects selected for the public pitching and, to the appeal of the present IDF representatives, made good impression in Riga.

15th Baltic Sea Forum for Documentaries

Market of ideas for documentary films for all distribution platforms with international potential:

September 7 - 11, 2011 | Riga, Latvia


Lina Lužyte came up with the idea for the project while on train, travelling through Belarus back to her home in Vilnius. The ten bizarre minutes she spent in Zhlobin when the train stopped there were enough to make an impression on her, one she would not forget for another year. What is more, she recognized that people living in Zhlobin may as well serve her as a subject matter for a documentary that symbolizes the drawbacks of system restart in post-Soviet countries. With the help of this year’s Ex Oriente Film workshop, Lina is able to drive her concept to the final stages of production and, hopefully, present Toys at pitching sessions, forums and meetings with professionals.

Ex Oriente Film 2011


Director: Luzyte Lina
Production company: Just a Moment

Igrushki , Belarus, Lithuania, 52 min, HD, Personal View, Portrait, Social Issues, Society

The documentary film Igrushki is a portrait of the small town of Zhlobin, Belorus, sometimes nicknamed the ‘town of fairytales’. Its locals have come up with a business idea to make and sell plush toys. There are tons of toys in the town and they are everywhere: in the street, markets, train station. And they no longer amaze anyone – they seem to have been living with the people of Zhlobin for ages. An exotic sight for a passerby, this is actually a poor, wild and utterly unprofitable business for the locals. The film tells five stories of the ordinary people of Zhlobin. They are all making toys, selling them, having chats, drinks, making toys again, singing, fighting and... making toys again. Nothing extraordinary takes place in the film, just like in the life of Zhlobin. Everything is seemingly stalled, absurd, yet at the same time, such is the reality that one cannot escape. Nor is anybody trying to. It is like it is. That is Zhlobin.
That is Belarus.

15th Baltic Sea Forum for Documentaries
Riga, Latvia
September 7 - 11

Baltic Sea Forum for Documentaries is a market of ideas for documentary films for all distribution platforms with international potential.Baltic Sea Forum consists of both a pitching workshop and session. The workshop will give the participants the chance to develop their documentary projects as well as the pitch of the project. The pitching session will give the participants the opportunity to present their project to a panel of international commissioning editors followed by scheduled individual meetings with them. Projects from documentary film and TV producers from the Baltic States, Belarus, Poland, Russia, Ukraine and Georgia will be developed in a workshop run by international experienced producers and filmmakers. At the pitching session 24 projects are presented to a panel of around 16 commissioning editors from the Baltic, Nordic and European TV stations. Each project may be pitched for five minutes, with further time for discussion at the discretion of the host. Each project may be pitched by up to two representatives. The pitch has to be supported with video clips of your new project or clips from your previous ones.