The 1 Year Programme
Each year, fourteen individuals are given the opportunity to co-direct a 30 minute documentary with OTOXO Productions to be screened on BTV. Simultaneously, participants are provided with an intensive nine month training course covering all elements of documentary studies and production. Following this the participants are given three months training focused on becoming film industry professionals, whilst at the same time they follow these steps and become film industry professionals in their own right.
Every year, fourteen selected participants co-direct a 30 minute documentary with OTOXO Productions. Each film is a fully commissioned OTOXO Production, with our stamp on it, and is screened on Barcelona TV and submitted to festivals worldwide. For these reasons alone we demand the highest quality of work from our participants and provide them with the highest quality of training to ensure it.
The production phase of the programme lasts nine months and participants experience every phase of the process. Under our guidance they are responsible for researching, writing, shooting, editing, producing and promoting the film. The tutorials that the participants receive during the course correspond directly to the phase of production that they are about to undertake. Participants are trained in a certain skill then immediately put that new skill into practice on the film’s production.
Participants receive 12 hours of weekly tutorials, and follow these with a minimum of 8 hours of production tasks every week. For those looking to make even more of the experience there are always extra tasks available each week as well. We know that many participants have jobs and other commitments and can’t always work more than the set hours, so we don’t make the extra tasks compulsory, but we always want to make extra opportunities available to those who can.
The subject matter of these documentaries varies from one production to the next but as you will see from our work, we focus on social issues, uncovering the inspiring personal stories that highlight broader themes. For information about the upcoming OTOXO/INto INdustry productions, click here.
Our 50/50 partnership
Our partnership with our participants continues beyond the creation of the film. Should that film which we create together (or any revised cut of the film, based on the same characters and concept) generate any money, for example from a sale to a platform, channel, distributor, or our own V.O.D platform, then the profits from that sale will be split 50/50 between OTOXO Productions and all programme participants.
Become a Film Industry Professional under OTOXO’s Guidance
No matter how much someone studies at a typical film school or how many traditional internship or work experience hours they rack up in the industry, there comes a point where they must move on to become a independent, paid professional in their own right. This is the biggest hurdle of all for people wanting to succeed in film, and also the point where most fall. One of the main problems with traditional film schools and internships is that at exactly this crucial moment, their participation ends. At OTOXO we do things very differently.
Once our participants have all they need to become professionals – training, experience, a co-director credit, a CV that includes production work for TV, we then help them use these tools to complete the final phase of their professional development. Again, through a balanced combination of training and real tasks, we guide our participants through the process of; hosting public screenings and events, building industry contacts, entering festivals, creating a successful online presence, setting up an independent production company, creating a showreel, crowdfunding a short and most crucially, simply getting paid for production work.
And most importantly of all, at every turn, we don’t just tell participants how they should do it, we’re there with them, ensuring that they do do it.
For the first nine months, participants are given exhaustive training in every aspect of the documentary making process, including:
- Research techniques: Finding a film, finding the right film.
- Working with characters: Identifying, understanding, and interacting.
- Writing the film: Why, when and how.
- Interview techniques. Preparation, process and reflection.
- Set up and control of a documentary DSLR.
- Set up and control of Canon C100Mkii
- Elements of composition and application in fixed shots.
- Camera Movement: How to move. When to move.
- Directing the camera: Decision making for live storytelling.
- The fundamentals of editing video and audio.
- Editing a scene: Technique, structure and emotional impact.
- Utilising music, filters and effects.
- Editing the final cut.
At each stage they follow their training with a corresponding production task. There are weekly tutorials of 12 hours, followed by 8 hours of production tasks (done in groups) and a 2 hour homework task (done individually).
For the final three months, the focus of the programme shifts completely. After finishing part 1, participants will have all the creative and technical skills they need, so from this point on, the training is dedicated to professional development, as participants become established industry professionals in their own right.
Just like during production, this is achieved through a combination of tutorials and practical tasks, all while under the guidance of the OTOXO team. These steps include –
- Directing and distributing an individual short documentary
- Setting up a small, independent production company.
- Finding and carrying out paid production work.
- Developing a funding strategy for documentaries.
- Creating a showreel.
- Hosting public screenings and events.
- Building industry contacts.
- Working for others.
- Creating a successful online presence.
So, by the end of the programme, participants already have experience and track record working within the industry, and all the training they require to continue doing so. In addition, they will also have a co-director credit for a TV production on their CV and written reference from OTOXO Productions, detailing their activities and responsibilities as co-director in the production.
All tutorials and production tasks are run in English, The OTOXO Productions tutors are both fluent Spanish speakers but also native English speakers. Candidates must be fluent in English to participate. Spanish is not required.
Participants are given access to all the equipment they will require for the duration of the production and programme.
The equipment we use on the programme is selected specifically to strike a balance between quality – to produce films that maintain and push the standards set by OTOXO and our broadcast partners, and affordability – so that our participants learn how to use, and maximise the potential of, equipment that is an affordable price to them, as they move on to produce their own professional productions.
- Canon C100 MarkII Cameras
- Sony A7iii Cameras
- Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM Lenses
- Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Lenses
- Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM Lenses
- DJI RS RONIN Gimbal
- Rode NGT-3 microphones
- Sennheiser ew 100 G3 wireless microphones
- Zoom H4n Pro Sound recorder
- Canon EOS 60D DSLR Cameras
- Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM Lenses
- Rode NGT-1 microphones
- Apple Macbook Pro with Final Cut Pro
- Zoom H1 Sound recorder
A computer is not essential. However having your own laptop would be very useful. All editing will be done using Final Cut, so if you are thinking of investing in a new laptop, we would recommend a MacBook. For those without Macs, OTOXO will provide access to one when necessary.
The INto INdustry Programme has provided the launch pad for so many successful careers in the film industry and the media. For example, in just the last 12 months, our programme graduates have moved on to paid production jobs in organisations such as Channel 4, Willis Sweete Productions, PressTV, Budapest Productions, In Focus Productions, Babieka Films, Fifty Fifty Post, Whicker’s World Foundation, Sheffield Doc/Fest and of course, the BBC. To find out more about how and why the programme provides such ideal preparation for people who want to work for the likes of the BBC there’s lots more information here.
The full price of the programme is €6495.
With the INto INdustry Programme there are various ways to recoup some or even all of your fees.
There are various external funding options available to students undertaking the programme, some specific to their home regions, some available across Europe, others International. OTOXO always encourage students to search for funding options available, and are happy to offer guidance on any funding applications they undertake, to try to give them the best chance of success.
We give all selected participants the option of crowdfunding to help cover the cost of their fees and many participants fund part or even all of their studies through finding donations. What makes this work is the fact that the course is tied into a real production. While it would be impossible for you to ask for donations to help you go to film school or do a course in documentary studies, it is much more reasonable to ask people and organisations to donate towards the making of a film spreading an important message about issues such as child poverty, homelessness, or the environment.
To facilitate the fundraising process, we provide interested participants with a promotional brochure about the production and the film. Participants who choose to get involved in fundraising will be working independently, but we will provide guidance and support wherever possible.
The final three months
One of the unique aspects of the INto INdustry programme is the fact that during the final three months, participants actually set up as independent directors in their own right, and under OTOXO’s guidance undertake their first professional experiences in the industry. They are trained on how to crowdfund documentary shorts and find commercial work. Any production money earned in these final months is kept by the participants themselves and can also help towards their original fee.
Schedule of payments
After the selection process, selected candidates pay a deposit of 800 euros (non-refundable) to confirm their place in the production. In terms of the remaining balance, there are a number of ways for participants to pay. If necessary, in most cases payments can be made in instalments in the build up to and/or during the programme. The OTOXO directors will make every effort to find a payment plan that works for each individual participant.
The Application Process
Places are limited. But you absolutely do not need experience or previous studies in film to apply. What you do need is creativity, imagination, dedication, focus, determination and a passion for documentary. If you think you have that, then you can start the process immediately by filling in the application form here.
After reviewing the application forms, we select a list of candidates who are invited to a face to face interview (or, if you are applying from abroad, an online interview). This way we can fully assess the potential of every candidate and make our final selection.
Good luck! We look forward to hearing from you.
The dates of our next programme
We are now accepting applications for our upcoming programmes which will start in January 2022 (reserve places) and September 2022.
If you have any questions or are looking for any more information, please contact us – firstname.lastname@example.org.