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Future Producer School, created by Sheffield Doc/Fest and Bungalow Town Productions, has successfully run every year since its launch in 2014.

Aimed at emerging producers currently working in the industry, the primary outcome of Future Producer School is to develop industry partnerships and provide industry knowledge and experience to up-and-coming producers that have the ambition to become international feature documentary producers.

You can read about our Future Producers 2018 Alumni here.

Future Producer School will help producers with limited exposure to key experience necessary in delivering feature documentary projects – in finance, distribution, production management, pitching and presenting projects to the industry in the UK and internationally. 

"Future Producer School was a perfect introduction to being a producer; it both kicked off my career and acted as a catalyst for our current film project." - Jon McIntosh, Future Producer 2015

Future Producer School consists of a residential lab, one-to-one mentoring, matchmade meetings and networking. The programme also prides itself on creating a network of talented and dynamic alumni who continue to support each other long after the course has finished. To find out more about the Future Producer School alumni, click here.

“Future Producer School was amazing, I'm so grateful and impressed by the program. The course filled some integral gaps in my industry knowledge. I feel like I now have an important support network of other producers I can call upon, seek advice and collaborate with, as well as the mentorship that is open, honest and inspirational. It provides unparalleled networking opportunities in the industry with generous sharing of contacts and time.” – Future Producer 2017

Meet the Mentors: Bungalow Town Productions

Since Rachel Wexler and Jez Lewis set up Bungalow Town in 2004 they have made a unique mark in the world of documentary. Based in rural England, they make highly individual and compelling documentaries for worldwide audiences. They have made 11 features and several shorter films working with many talented filmmakers from the UK, North America and Japan. These films document an incredible array of stories, subjects and characters. From the story of the Afghan cricket team in their quest to get to the global stage in Out of the Ashes, to a renowned brain surgeon’s journey to save lives in the Ukraine in The English Surgeon, or a devastating train crash in Japan in Brakeless, Bungalow Town seeks to explore universal, human themes through a complex, specific and real-life prism.  

Bungalow Town films have exhibited at innumerable film festivals including Sheffield Doc/Fest, Edinburgh, London, Sundance, Karlovy Vary, Hotdocs, Krakow, Fullframe, Silverdocs and IDFA. They have also been distributed on every available platform worldwide including on the big screen. Bungalow Town have won dozens of awards, including a Grierson, an Emmy and two Peabodys.




Applications are now closed for the 2018 programme.



- You should want to develop feature documentaries with the ultimate goal of multi-platform releases in several international markets.

- You will have some professional experience behind you – this programme is not an entry-level talent programme.

- You should be working and living in the UK.

- You will have some experience of reaching audiences already (whether online, on TV, at festivals, on DVD or elsewhere) and will be aspiring to make the step up to making a feature and reaching broader audiences.

- You should be motivated to join a network of committed and mutually supportive filmmaking peers.

- We are proactive in selecting a diverse group of producers, and actively encourage producers from diverse backgrounds to apply

- You should be working on or have an idea for a feature documentary project that you would like to develop through the course.




November 2017

A three-day residential in Derbyshire, with workshops led by specialist producers, guest tutors and the course leaders. Previous residential guests have included Julie Goldman (Ai Weiwei: Never SorryLife, AnimatedGod Loves Uganda) Lizzie Gillett & Franny Armstrong (Age of StupidMcLibel), Nikki Parrott and Natasha Dack-Ojumu (Only When I Dance, McCullin), Signe Byrge Sorensen (Act of Killing, The Look of Silence), Sara Stockmann (Armadillo, Mercy Mercy) and BBC Storyville's Jo Lapping. 

December 2017 - March 2018

One-to-one mentoring and support from Bungalow Town Productions’ mentors Rachel Wexler and Jez Lewis. Course participants will have access to four hours of mentoring from December through to March. 

June 2018

Matchmade one-to-one meetings and networking with the industry at Sheffield Doc/Fest – one-to-one and group sessions at Sheffield Doc/Fest in June 2018 with leading industry Decision Makers.

July 2018 onwards

The 2018 Future Producers will then be invited to join the Future Producers School alumni network, which would total 75 members after this edition. Alumni have gone on to work with high profile funders and directors on award-winning projects.




Applications are now closed.

The fee includes a complimentary pass for Sheffield Doc/Fest 2018 with access to film screenings, the Alternate Realities programme, the industry conference programme, Marketplace sessions, networking receptions and parties, and Doc/Player. If you have already purchased a pass to the Festival we will be unable to refund this as per our Refund Policy.

"I could not recommend taking part in this course highly enough. It was an amazing opportunity to broaden my thinking about sales, marketing and distribution within the documentary world, television or feature length. It was also a fantastic networking opportunity, offering a very open and honest forum to meet people and talk about the mechanics of producing." – Bianca Barker, Future Producer 2014




This scheme is supported by the Creative Skillset Film Skills Fund, with BFI's Film Forever National Lottery funds, and through the Skills Investment Fund (SIF).


Bungalow Town Productions are an Emmy Award-winning producers of unique documentaries for worldwide audiences. 



If you have any queries about our Future Producer School programme, or if you would like to participate as a mentor, speaker, or sponsor, please contact the marketplace team at marketplace@sheffdocfest.com.