MDAG Industry - a space for the development of the documentary industry

MDAG Industry project is a unique film industry event that connects Polish filmmakers with foreign festival representatives, distributors, producers, sales agents and contemporary cinema stars. We started in 2021 with a single event, and in 2022 we created an expanded section of industry events under the name MDAG Industry. This year we have prepared an extensive programme of activities – the next step in the documentary industry's development.

The Industry section is organised in cooperation with Canal+ Poland.


This year's MDAG Industry programme:


THURSDAY, May 11, 2023

KIPA Breakfast

Organiser: KIPA (Polish Producers Alliance)

KIPA Breakfast is an initiative launched in cooperation with the Polish Producers Alliance and their Young Producers Section. It offers an opportunity to network and meet representatives of leading film organisations, production companies, sales and distribution specialists as well as creators.


Royalties and Copyright in Documentary Films

Organiser: ZAPA – the Union of Audiovisual Authors and Producers, Polish Producers Alliance

Speaker: Cezary Piekarczyk –  Head of the Repartition and Author Services Department at ZAPA – the Union of Audiovisual Authors and Producers

What does the royalty system look like in Poland? Who is entitled to this form of remuneration and what for? How does it concern the documentary industry? Cezary Piekarczyk, an expert at ZAPA – the Union of Audiovisual Authors and Producers, will answer these and many other relevant questions. During the meeting, he will explain what royalties and their legal basis are, who is entitled to receive them, and what the payment mechanism regarding filmmakers looks like. The panel will also address the topic of royalties from the Internet, an issue which has been widely discussed in the past months. The ZAPA expert will talk about the future of copyright law and possible remuneration for the online distribution of documentaries.


Audio Reportage Zone: How to Create an Audio Documentary that Engages All the Senses?

Organiser: Audioteka

How to make a good audio reportage that engages all the senses, yet only relies on one? Is the lack of the visual a limitation? Does an audio documentary require more work from the creator to immerse the viewer in the world of the protagonists? Audioteka invites you to a meeting with the authors of the most popular audio documentaries available on the platform, who will talk about the workshop of an audio reporter. 


FRIDAY, May 12, 2023

Progress Pitching Session 

Organiser: Against Gravity

Partner: Canal+ Polska

Moderator: Frank Piasecki Poulsen

An event dedicated to visually interesting, creative documentary projects with international potential. It is an excellent chance to discover films which are looking for international co-production or distribution opportunities in their different phases, from concept to post-production. Selected finalists will present their projects to leading Polish and international film industry representatives: producers, investors, sales agents, distributors and festival programmers. The pitching aims to leverage the festival guests' expertise and create a place where world-class projects are born.


SATURDAY, May 13, 2023

Pole Position – Pitching Session

Organiser: Against Gravity

Moderator: Aleksandra Salwa

For the first time, the MDAG Industry will host a pitching session of Polish films that are already completed and included in the 20th Millennium Docs Against Gravity programme. The short presentations will encourage foreign guests to watch the film and include it in their festival programme, or distribution.

This is a unique opportunity for filmmakers to attract the best industry professionals.


Protagonist Exploitation. Psychology Workshop following the screening of Subject, dir. Jennifer Tiexiera, Camilla Hall; and a meeting with Margaret Ratliff 

Guest: Margie Ratliff

Moderators:  Armen Mekhakyan, Zuzanna Piechowicz 

Once rendered into film, the lives of its protagonists change irrevocably. They are no longer anonymous, and their formerly private space is, as it were, shared with the viewers. What price do they pay for opening up? Together with Margaret Ratliff, we will take a closer look at the issue.


SUNDAY, May 14, 2023

Short Pitch Program 

Organiser: Institute of Documentary Film 

Partner: Against Gravity

Moderator: Emilia Mazik

Pitches of five documentary shorts selected by the Czech Institute of Documentary Film. The projects are at various stages of development – rough-cut or completed. 


Masterclass: Do We Really Care About the Facts?

Speaker: Ove Rishøj Jensen

What makes a documentary film stand out? When narrating non-fiction, we are often guided by a theme, an issue, or a cause. But what really drives the story? We will look at the key mechanisms of narrative construction and the narrative structure. 


Debate: Documentary Cinema Is Not Indifferent

partner: POLIN Museum

Speakers: Jonas Rasmussen, David France

Together with leading documentary filmmakers, we will centre the conversation on the slogan of MDAG’s 20th edition: Don't Be Indifferent. We will sum up the festival’s last two decades, paying special attention to those who, through their documentary work, bring us closer to the experiences of others and help us see what is not always visible from afar, thus mobilising us to action. We will talk about the extraordinary value of cinema itself, which teaches us to be sensitive and attentive to the world.


MONDAY, May 15, 2023

The 4th Children’s Documentary Forum

The finale of the 2nd edition of the “Jump in the Doc. Documentary Ideas Laboratory” programme

Organiser: Andrzej Wajda Centre For Film Culture

Partners: Millennium Docs Against Gravity,  Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, KBF (Krakowskie Biuro Festiwalowe), Krakow Film Commission, Władysław Ślesicki Film Foundation, Polish Producers Alliance, Dziki Bez Association

The project is co-financed by the City of Warsaw

During the upcoming edition of the Children's Documentary Forum, we will talk about the idea behind the Jump In the Doc programme. Why is it worth creating and financing Polish children’s documentaries? We will present a case study of the film Girls' Stories, directed by Agnieszka Borzym, which premiered at the festival and was developed as part of Jump In the Doc. The highlight of the event will be the pitches of eight projects from the third edition of the programme. The best of them will be awarded prizes. The Forum offers an excellent opportunity to exchange ideas and build a support network for the Polish children's documentary industry.


How to Survive in an Unjust World? Masterclass with David France

Speaker: David France

During the 20th Millennium Docs Against Gravity, Oscar®-nominated director David France will give his master class in Warsaw. Our guest will tell us how to be an activist in today’s world and turn empathy into action (by writing or filmmaking). He will also discuss our chances of saving the world – locally and globally.


Case Study of Last Years' Festival Hits: The Pawnshop, Between Us and Bucolic 

Organiser: Wajda School

Partners: Canal+, Against Gravity

A meeting with outstanding documentary filmmakers: Marcel Łoziński, Vita Żelakeviciute, Maciej Cuske (lecturers of the DOK PRO course at the WAJDA SCHOOL) as well as Łukasz Kowalski, Dorota Proba and Karol Pałka whose films were developed as part of the programme. Director of the Polish Competition at Millennium Docs Against Gravity Wojciech Diduszko and a representative of CANAL+ Poland, co-producer of the film The Pawnshop and a broadcaster with its own documentary channel, will also take part in the meeting.