RCLA 2023 Call for Submissions

A lifetime dreaming of your story. Years researching, raising funds. Months pouring over text and proposals, rejections and victories. Eventually production starts, and stops. Subjects’ lives change and alter the narrative possibilities. That’s ok though, it’s part of the thrill. Budgets get higher, funding runs lower; but you manage, somehow. Finally, you feel you’re ready for the edit, you think you’re ready. Then the real problems begin.

Rough Cut Lab Africa, RCLA, supports independent documentary films in their rough cut stage by pairing up directors and editors with African and Pan-African story consultants from all fields in the filmmaking world, including editors, directors, producers, programmers, academics, curators and critics. In our 5th edition and in partnership with the National Film and Video Foundation, the South African Guild of Editors, Encounters South African International Documentary Festival, the Goethe Institute and the Refinery, we invite 9 projects over two weeks to engage and receive targeted finishing support when they eventually lock story.

RCLA 2023 is a virtual programme and will be held from the 20th of May until the 3rd of June 2023. This call is open to African documentary projects and African filmmakers and editors with a working rough cut. We also encourage producers to apply and attend. The film will need to have a working and viewable rough cut, a coherent assembly could be considered but we cannot accommodate rushes with no edit. If a project has been chosen the previous year, they are not eligible to enter with a new project in the following year.


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