2024 MeetMarket Projects

MeetMarket 2023

We are thrilled to announce the slate for the 2024 MeetMarket taking place Thursday 13 June and Friday 14 June, as part of a broader marketplace programme of talent development, pitches, roundtables and conferences designed to connect new projects with industry partners that runs across the festival.

The selection includes 50 documentary projects, in development, production stage and rough cut stage, to be pitched in one-to-one meetings to international and UK industry representatives and experts.

Drawn from 533 submissions, the 50 projects in the 2024 selection encompass 43 countries of production and co-production. New works will be presented from experienced producers such as Ina Fichman, Estelle Robin You, Monica Lazurean-Gorgan and Michèle Stevenson, working alongside first time and second time filmmakers. 

The 5 Rough Cut titles which will be screened to industry representatives and receive tailored feedback are: The Age of Water, B-Side, Our Land, Queer as Punk, and Will They Ever Come Back? 

Recently released projects that were previously pitched at the Sheffield Meetmarket include Mother Vera (Visions du Réel 2024), Motherboard (CPH:DOX 2024), Nocturnes (Sundance 2024), Life is Beautiful (IDFA 2023), Tish (Sheffield DocFest 2023 opening night film) and Between the Rains (Tribeca 2023). 

Patrizia Mancini, Head of Industry, Sheffield DocFest: “Sheffield DocFest continues to strive for an open and inclusive Marketplace whose goal is to welcome and support original and impactful non-fiction storytelling, for professionals from across the world and across genres. This year our selection welcomes several exciting and engaged new voices in addition to an international slate from experienced producers, embodying our commitment to making space for fresh perspectives and truthful stories.” 

Lisa Marie Russo, Executive Producer and Sheffield DocFest Marketplace Consultant: “It’s a pleasure to once again work alongside the MeetMarket team as we prepare for Sheffield DocFest 2024. The rigorous and collegiate selection process assures that a broad range of voices and visions from around the globe will have a platform to advance their filmmaking partnerships. The selection reflects eclectic, energetic and thoughtful approaches, which embrace a modern day urgency to the stories we tell.”

This year, 15 UK and international industry professionals used their combined expertise in production, development, sales, distribution, funding, exhibition, and festivals to assess the applications received to the MeetMarket.

The 2024 selectors were:

Alex Moussa Sawadogo, Dumitrita Pacicovschi, Elhum Shakerifar, Emily Copley, Hicham Falah, Inadelso Cossa, Katayoon Shahabi, Kiyoko McCrae, Lara Sousa, Lisa Marie Russo, Patrizia Mancini, Peter Yam, Raul Niño Zambrano, Rodolfo Castillo-Morales, and Sophie Duncan. 

The 31st edition of Sheffield DocFest will celebrate the art of documentary and bring creatives from across the world together in Sheffield between 12-17 June 2024. The full public programme will be announced on Wednesday 8 May 2024, followed by the full industry programme of industry sessions, pitches and events on 15 May 2024.

Industry festival passes are on sale now here for members of the film, digital art and related communities, and you can apply for press accreditation via this link here


Full list of MeetMarket Projects

MeetMarket Rough Cut Projects

This year’s selection includes 5 projects which will be presented as part of our Rough Cut screenings.


The Age of Water

Production country: Mexico

Directors: Isabel Alcántara, Alfredo Alcántara

Producers: Lindsay Perna, Joe Brewster (Rada Studios), Michèle Stephenson (Rada Studios)

In Mexico’s heartland, a community is torn apart when three children die due to a rare form of cancer. A group of women determined to uncover the cause, expose radioactivity in their water, setting the stage for a battle against authorities who repeatedly undercut their efforts. 



Production country: Italy

Director: Agostino Ferrente

Producers: Gianfilippo Pedote (Casa delle Visioni), Agostino Ferrente

Naples, in a difficult neighborhood, at the age of 16: is it better to accept an honest but humble and underpaid job or to enter the 'welfare' of drug dealing offered by the local organised crime, the Camorra?


Our Land 

Production country: United Kingdom 

Director: Orban Wallace

Producers: Charlie Phillips (I am Charlie Ltd), Rebecca Wolff (Grasp the Nettle)

Our Land dares to trespass where few have trespassed before, in a modern retelling of the history of England’s Land and the communities fighting to shape its future, exploring both sides of this polarized debate, in the age-old battle for land and power.


Queer as Punk 

Production country: Malaysia

Director: Yih Wen Chen 

Producers: Yih Wen Chen, Mandy Marahimin (Talamedia) 

Details only available to selected industry representatives at the MeetMarket.


Will They Ever Come Back?

Production country: Colombia 

Director: Angela Carabal

Producers: Sandra Tabares-Duque (Sandelion Productions), Angela Carabal

Angela and her sister Juliana cross the country to find the Indigenous lands where their father, a farmer of African descent, was forcibly disappeared years ago. In a dream, he asks to be found.



MeetMarket Projects

24 Strong

Production country: Belgium

Co-production country: Netherlands

Directors: Kristian Van der Heyden, Rieneke Van Santen

Producer: Kristian Van der Heyden (Harald House)

Co-producers: Rieneke Van Santen (Dendezo Media Support & Productions), Monique Busman (TOMTIT FILM)

Inside Papua New Guinea, a Pacific country in turmoil with the highest rates of gender based violence in the world, a groundbreaking media emerges led by women determined to revolutionize investigative journalism.


Another Day Shall Come

Production countries: Palestine

Director: Aida Kaddan

Producer: Aida Kaddan

Details only available to selected industry representatives at the MeetMarket.



Production country: France

Co-production country: Georgia

Director: Nika Nikulshina

Producers: Valerie Montmartin (LITTLE BIG STORY), Vlad Ketkovich (LITTLE BIG STORY)

Co-producer: Seraphina Zinkovsky

AVOIDANCE is a CGI documentary about Russian war crimes in Ukraine and the people who made it possible. Pussy Riot activist Nika Nikulshina and her queer artists team created a complex storyline interconnecting the testimonies of particular Russian soldiers, Ukrainian citizens' evidence and the results of journalistic investigation.


Big in Gazi Baba

Production country: North Macedonia

Co-production country: United Kingdom

Director: Pauline Blanchet

Producer: Avdi Thachi (Lumiere Films)

Co-producers: James Collie (Violet Pictures), Jan Dunn (Violet Pictures)

Sadije (14), the state champion in wrestling, struggles to find her identity ​​as the sole girl in her club in the ethnically divided city of Skopje, and the only Albanian on the National Macedonian wrestling team.


Blue Sweater with a Yellow Hole

Production country: Ukraine

Co-production countries: France, Czech Republic

Director: Tetiana Khodakivska

Producer: Elena Saulich (Pronto Film) 

Co-producers: Johann Chapelan (Girelle Production), Martin Vandas (Maur Film)

This mixed-media documentary follows the Ukrainian children Kira (10 ), Taisa (14), and Artem (15) as they paint their memories of Russian ‘re-education camps’. The animated scenes contour propaganda and information manipulations in the modern world.


Breaking the Wall

Production country: China

Co-production country: Canada

Director: Weichao Xu

Producer: Yiqian Zhang (Touchstone Productions)

In China's most avant-garde public housing, a vibrant microcosm of community emerges. Who holds the authority to define the dignity of living? The commanding government, visionary architect, or the residents who breathe life into these spaces?


Carmela and the Walkers

Production country: Ecuador

Directors: Esteban Coloma, Luis Herrera

Producer: Esteban Coloma (Cooperativa Audiovisual CoopDocs)

On the border between Ecuador and Colombia, Carmela welcomes into her home thousands of people crossing South America on foot during the Venezuelan exodus. Her mission does not stop despite the scourge of the pandemic, the lack of humanitarian aid, and the sudden imprisonment of her husband.  


Confessions of a Female Gamer

Production country: Bulgaria

Co-production country: United Kingdom

Director: Dolya Gavanski

Producers: Martichka Bozhilova (Agitprop), Dolya Gavanski (Thea Films)

An actress (the director herself) reluctantly cast as the voice of a cult heroine discovers the complex inner lives of female gamers worldwide.


The Cord

Production country: France

Co-production country: Brazil

Director: Myriam Guillot

Producer: Estelle Robin You (Grande Ourse Films)

Venezuela, Maracaibo.

When a health system is broken, life hangs only by a thread. In her make-shift ambulance, ex-revolutionary figure and former gang leader Carolina relentlessly maintains the vital cord between pregnant women and their babies.


Derek's Ark

Production country: United Kingdom

Director: James Dawson

Producer: Serena Kennedy (The Slate Works), David Broder (Loupe Films)

A madcap story of two visions of rural Britain colliding in the Devon countryside. One farmer is transforming his land into an oasis for nature; his neighbour, an avid intensive dairy farmer, is appalled: "It's not farming. It's just a mess!"


Desperately Seeking Rainbows

Production countries: Taiwan, Singapore

Directors: Kenny Png, Frances Lu

Producer: Stefano Centini (Volos Films Ltd), Paolo Maria Spina

In one of the most dangerous places in the world, they possess the strongest weapon of all: sex.


Fatna, a Woman Named Rachid

Production countries: France, Morocco, Belgium

Director: Hélène Harder

Producers: Nadège Labé (Wendigo Films), Ilham Raouf (ABEL AFLAM), Jean-David Lefebvre, Delphine Duez (WHITE BOAT PICTURES), Valentin Leblanc

In Casablanca today, 67 year old Fatna El Bouih, Moroccan ex-political prisoner in the 1970s, has returned to activism in a new way. Inside and outside of prisons, she is fighting for people’s rights, struggling to keep alive her dream for change.


The Gods Must Be Mistaken

Production countries: Slovenia, Germany

Co-production country: Croatia

Director: Jakob Krese

Producers: Ivana Naceva (Potem), Annika Mayer (Majmun Films)

Co-producers: Vanja Jambrović, Marina Gumzi

A Yugoslav family reflects on over half a century of upheaval, hope, destruction and new-beginnings. A dialogue about missing gods, an end that is not, the necessity to never give up and the price that must be borne.


Good Morning Afghanistan

Production country: United Kingdom

Co-production country: Denmark

Directors: Shogofa Sahar, Bruce Goodison

Producers: Kate Cook (Indefinite Films), Camilla Nielsson, Waseem Mahmood

Twenty years after launching Afghanistan’s revolutionary free speech radio Good Morning Afghanistan, one of its trailblazing young journalists instigates a revival by reuniting her exiled colleagues to beam uncensored news and truth back to their Taliban-controlled homeland.


Green is the Fire's Tint

Production countries: India, Romania, Italy

Directors: Arya Rothe, Cristina Hanes, Isabella Rinaldi

Producers: Arya Rothe (NoCut Film Collective), Cristina Hanes (NoCut Film Collective), Isabella Rinaldi (NoCut Film Collective)

Somi, an ex-Maoist (Naxalite) rebel, faces a new battle as her efforts to build a home are stalled by the construction of an iron mine. Somi leads her community in resisting the violation of their land, forest and indigenous heritage, but this time without her rifle.


Los Guaduales

Production countries: Colombia, Canada

Co-production country: Venezuela

Director: Bryan Angarita

Producer: Sahar Yousefi (Nava Projects)

Co-producer: Marcela Hernandez Guerra

Jesus, a former Venezuelan rodeo star-turned-bamboo cutter in Colombia, returns home to compete in a rodeo for a cash prize that he hopes will change his displaced family’s life.


Horse/Woman (wt.)

Production country: United Kingdom

Director: Lizzie Mackenzie

Producer: Emily Copley (Of the Wild Productions)

Lucy, a rebellious 80 year old horse scientist, has spent her life living amongst the world's fragile communities of wild horses. Now in the twilight of her life, her growing preoccupation, after a lifetime of meticulous scientific observation, is the mysterious subject of the soul.



Production country: France

Co-production country: Belgium

Director: Déni Oumar Pitsaev

Producer: Alexandra Mélot (Triptyque Films)

Co-producers: Anne-laure Guégan, Géraldine Sprimont

I have been offered land in Pankisi, Georgia, a valley set against the Caucasus Mountains on the other side of Chechnya, the country where I was born. An exile, I contemplate building a house in this secluded Chechen region, also known as “the Jihadists’ valley”. How can I inhabit such a place?


In Cod We Trust

Production country: Norway

Co-production country: Finland

Director: Guro Saniola Bjerk

Producer: Benedikte Bredesen (f(x) produksjoner AS)

Co-producer: Pasi Hakkio (Wacky Ties)

Welcome to the small fishing village of Båtsfjord, where Cod is more important than God.

In Cod We Trust is a portrait of a town, and a meditation on home and belonging. It reveals that in the coldest places on earth, you find the warmest and funniest people.


In the Winds of the Icefields (wt.)

Production country: Estonia 

Co-production country: Sweden

Director: Mihkel Oksmann

Producers: Hõbe Ilus (Sui), Sergio C. Ayala (Monserrate Films)

Co-producer: Sergio C. Ayala (Monserrate Films)

The 87-years-old legendary ice sailor is crafting his last ice yacht. When the filmmaker goes to capture his grandfather engineering this utopian vessel, the latter asks him to jump on the boat with him instead. The race against time begins. If only there was ice.



Production country: Mexico

Co-production country: USA

Directors: Efraín Mojica, Rebecca Zweig

Producer: Sarah Strunin

In Michoacán, México, a hypermasculine tradition is rife with hidden queer encounters. Jaripeo follows two rancheros who navigate desire, machismo, and mass migration from one rodeo season to the next.


Jinwar - Land of Women

Production countries: Syria, United Kingdom

Director: Beyan Taher

Producer: Fleur Nieddu (Lovelace Films)

In Syria, a group of mothers who no longer believe women can survive in a world designed for men, decide to isolate themselves, creating an oasis away from patriarchal structure and rule. Inside Jinwar - a land built by women for women - Yasmin and her peers take back their independence and rebuild their lives. But for how long can they protect their new existence, and is it possible to survive as single mothers in society outside of Jinwar's walls?


Kikuyu Land

Production country: Kenya

Co-production country: USA

Directors: Bea Wangondu, Andrew H. Brown

Producers: Bea Wangondu (The Bea Company), Andrew H. Brown (Ragtag Collective)

Co-producer: Joseph Njenga

While investigating a civil petition against the British Crown and Kenya’s tea industry, a Nairobi journalist stumbles upon her own family's concealed secrets.


Letters from Home (wt.)

Production countries: China, USA

Directors: Xin Fang, Chenyu Kou

Producers: Xin Fang (Koi Fish Film), Nicole Tsien

Seeking family reconciliation after a decade in America, I face daunting challenges: incarcerated parents, an Alzheimer’s-stricken grandmother, and a world transformed by the pandemic. In a poignant quest to understand my hometown and my parents, I write a letter to my father for the first time.


Life of Tipu

Production countries: Ireland, Bangladesh, USA

Director: Bob Gallagher

Producers: David Clarke (EZ Films), Bob Gallagher (Homebird Productions), Jeanie Igoe (Homebird Productions)

When painter Salvatore of Lucan discovers his absent father and mixed heritage, a mysterious odyssey ensues through a complex family history, blending fact, fiction and paint.



Production country: Sweden

Director: Zara Arrehed

Producer: Zara Arrehed

Melissa is caught between being secretly gay in a Christian orthodox community and her relationship with her mother, whose life revolves around the church. When her Shia Muslim girlfriend demands that they either move in together or break up, Melissa must fight to break free from traditions while, at the same time, navigate the tricky terrain back to her mother’s heart. 


The Mother of All Fights

Production country: Brazil

Co-production country: United Kingdom

Directors: Ivi Roberg, Juliano Salgado

Producers: Joi Lee, Alice Aedy (Earthrise Studio)

Co-producer: Grain Media

Against the backdrop of a burning Amazon and far-right government, The Mother of All Fights follows the extraordinary rise of activist-turned-politician Sonia Guajajara as she leads Indigenous women to unprecedented victory – becoming Brazil’s first-ever Indigenous Minister. 


The Noble Half (wt.)

Production country: Pakistan

Co-production country: USA

Director: Khaula Malik

Producers: Brit Fryer, Afnahn Khan

In Rawalpindi, Pakistan, a group of trans women, led by activist Bubbli Malik, build a thriving community running a cafe at a local university. When this economic lifeline is threatened and the cafe is forced to close, the group is forced to find new pathways for survival and connection.



Production country: Italy

Director: Giorgio Bosisio

Producers: Giorgio Viscardini (x01 Srl), Beatrice Ratto

In a place where everything happens a little earlier than anywhere else, we glance to witness the future. A disappearing world, its people, and their most intimate truths revealed for the very last time. 


One of Us

Production country: Romania

Co-production country: United Kingdom

Director: Rachel Close

Producers: Monica Lazurean-Gorgan, Elena Martin

Co-producer: Aleksandra Bilic

While casting herself as the helper in Mihaela’s search for her birth mother, Rachel is drawn back into her own search for answers. Perhaps she can find the answers she needs in the documentation, community, or other remaining family members.



Production country: USA

Director: Naveen Chaubal

Producer: Bryn Silverman

Pinball follows 19-year-old Yosef in suburban Louisville, Kentucky as he dives into the memories of his journey from Iraq to America and what it ultimately means for him to chase his dreams in the shadow of a war that displaced his family from their Iraqi homeland.


A Place Like Home

Production country: Estonia

Director: Kadriann Kibus

Producer: Kadriann Kibus (Rebel Frame)

Becoming disillusioned with the impact of the youth climate movement they started at 16, an Estonian activist embarks on a soul-searching journey to find out what being human is all about.


Racing Hearts

Production countries: Sweden, Denmark, France

Director: Milla Bergh

Producer: Martin Bergh

Co-producers: Christine Le Goff, Mette Heide

Ewy and Ursula, two Swedish veterinary assistants with a passion for fast cars, set out to drive the male-only Argentina’s Grand Prix in 1962. After a sensational victory they soon fall out and never speak again. When filmmaker Milla finds Ursula's lost film rolls and Ewy's diaries she uncovers an intense but brief friendship of two trailblazers the world forgot about.



Production country: United Kingdom

Co-production country: Brazil

Director: Mauricio Monteiro Filho

Producers: Mauricio Monteiro Filho, Charlie Rosser

Co-producers: Hugh Davies, Clive Patterson (Insight Films)

RECKONING follows a Brazilian state prosecutor as he leads a landmark investigation into crimes against humanity and genocide, perpetrated by the previous Bolsonaro administration against theYanomami people of the northern Amazon.


Scarlet Girls

Production country: Dominican Republic

Co-production countries: Germany, Mexico

Director: Paula Cury Melo

Producers: Paula Cury Melo (Cristal Cine), Samuel Didonato (Cristal Cine)

Co-producers: Natalia Imaz (parabellum film), Omar Lara (Disruptiva Films)

What does it mean to be a woman in a country where abortion is banned in all circumstances? In this lyrical documentary, women and girls speak about the challenges and consequences regarding unsafe abortion in the Dominican Republic.


The Shape of Blue

Production country: Canada

Co-production country: Japan

Director: Sybilla Patrizia

Producer: Ina Fichman (Intuitive Pictures inc.)

Two Japanese indigo dyers embark on a transformative, inner journey: one uncovers the profound meaning within the hues of blue, while the other gains a new way to see through his colorblindness. Together, they fight to save a century-old tradition on the brink of disappearing.


Son of a Fisherman

Production countries: India, New Zealand

Director: Arjun Menon

Producers: Chippy Babu (Traintripper Films), Siddharth Vasani, Arjun Menon, Abhishek Sharma (Traintripper Films)

Koli Boy follows Prabhat Koli, a Mumbai fisherman's son, as he tackles the Seven Oceans Challenge by swimming New Zealand's Cooke Strait. This riveting documentary explores his journey, highlighting family sacrifices and the indomitable spirit and solidarity of a marginalized Koli fishing community.


Still Pushing Pineapples

Production country: United Kingdom

Co-production country: Scotland

Director: Kim Hopkins

Producer: Margareta Szabo (Labor of Love Films)

Co-producer: Nikki Parrot (Tigerlily Two Productions)

Entertainment, working class culture, human connection, the power of pop and the state of Britain align in a funny, irreverent road movie that follows an ageing pop star trying to revive and keep alive his past triumph.


A Troop of Bears 

Production country: Chile

Co-production country: Canada

Directors: Christian Martínez, Pachi Bustos, Paola Castillo Villagrán

Producers: Christian Martínez, Pachi Bustos, Paola Castillo Villagrán

Co-producers: Daniela Mujica (Productions Ocho)

The story of an encounter between the son of a disappeared detainee and the man who turned him in during the Chilean military dictatorship. The documentary explores the traces of forced disappearance and betrayal, of silence and guilt, proposing new images to dream of what could have been.


Untitled Eitaro Project

Production country: Japan

Co-production country: USA

Directors: Koodae Kim, Teruisha Yoshida

Producers: Koodae Kim (tenFrames), Teruisha Yoshida

As he struggles to uphold his mother's expectations and legacy, Eitaro, Japan's only male geisha, confronts the decline of geisha culture and redefines his artistic birthright amidst a global journey turned personal odyssey.


Vena Acuática

Production countries: El Salvador, USA

Director: Amada Torruella

Producers: Seth Gadsden (Amuletos Projects), Brenda Avila-Hanna

Co-producers: María Luisa Santos

An intimate and tender journey through the body-territory relationship in El Salvador, Vena Acuática is a mosaic of collective resistance and womanhood, unfolding against the backdrop of migration, water rights and ecocide.


War on Women

Production country: Estonia

Co-production country: Slovakia

Director: Maris Salumets

Producer: Elina Litvinova (Three Brothers)

Co-producer: Tereza Nvotova (Talking Stone Production)

A single mom goes on a global quest to reveal a network of organisations behind the recent rise of the ultra-conservative movement and its attacks on our constitutional rights.


The Way We Were

Production countries: United Kingdom, Hong Kong

Co-production country: Taiwan

Directors: Ka-Ki Wong, Yuk-Fai Ho

Producer: Bambby Cheuk (Pōtocol)

Co-producer: Chen Ping-chia

Seven-year-old Hoi-nam and four-year-old Ah-yat's journeys unfold as they navigate life in the UK, having migrated from Hong Kong. Over the next five years, this documentary chronicles their personal growth.


Widow Champion

Production country: Kenya

Co-production country: USA

Director: Zippy Kimundu

Producers: Zippy Kimundu (Afrofilms International Company Ltd.), Heather Courtney (10th Street Films LLC.)

Thrown out of her home and off her land by her in-laws, a Kenyan widow, becomes a fighter for women’s land rights in a deeply patriarchal community. Her story explores the delicate balance between a deep-rooted culture and a changing world.


With Their Backs to the Sky

Production country: USA

Director: Erik Nuding

Producers: Kendall Fitzgerald (A Dip in the Lake LLC.), Angelo Andrianiaina (A Dip in the Lake LLC.)

In the depleted forests of Madagascar, a family of bat-catchers teams up with local biologists studying endemic fruit bats. When increasingly strange weather disrupts their mission, colonial legacies surface whilst ancestral knowledge endures.


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