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Documentary
CBC Short Docs

Who We Are

CBC Short Docs is CBC’s award-winning series of original documentaries for CBC Gem and the CBC Docs Youtube Channel. Our audience is young, diverse and hungry for good stories.

CBC Short Docs have been viewed by millions of people around the world on our digital platforms as well as at festivals including TIFF, Sundance, Hot Docs, DOC NYC, IDFA and many more.

All of our films are:

  • Under 44 minutes in length
  • Stand-alone documentaries
  • Character-driven
  • Contemporary, focus on a single, unified, strong narrative
  • Will appeal to a young, diverse audience watching content on digital devices

What We Are Looking For

We want you to bring us the stories that only you can tell, revealing unique access and perspectives and using innovative methods of storytelling.

Stories that:

Characters that:

Style:

  • Are you considering a digital audience?
  • Is your editorial and visual approach distinctive?
  • Are you concise and efficient with your storytelling?

What To Submit

A simple one-page proposal outlining the following:

  • A logline that captures the essence of your doc and grabs our attention.
  • A few paragraphs articulating what your doc is, not just the story behind it. How will you tell this story in a way that no other filmmaker can tell it?
  • Tell us about your characters and how they help drive the story. Video of key characters is always helpful for us in making decisions, but not necessary.
  • Story and format. What’s the narrative arc, the unfolding story? Tell us how you’re going to take this doc beyond being a profile piece. If you happen to already have tape or other media, please include appropriate links.
  • Creative treatment. What’s your unique visual approach? How are you considering a digital audience?
  • Links to some of your previous work so that we know your strengths.

Things to remember:

  • WATCH OUR DOCS before you pitch to us! Get a sense of what’s working and how we’re evolving our content strategy
  • Our focus is on strong stand-alone short docs.
  • We prefer to commission the project at its earliest stage, giving us a chance to collaborate with you throughout production. We are not looking for any completed documentaries for acquisition at this time.
  • A budget is not required at the pitch stage - we’ll request one if we would like to discuss your project further. If you already have a budget, feel free to include it.

Who Is Eligible

  • We work with documentary filmmakers from across Canada, but we prioritize working with early to mid-career filmmakers and filmmakers who are Black, Indigenous, and Persons of Colour.
  • We accept pitches from Canadians living abroad and from people with unique ties to Canada
  • Please note: Currently, we are NOT looking for any completed short documentaries for acquisition.

READY TO SUBMIT?

Please send your pitch along with a signed CBC release form to the following email:

digitaldoc@cbc.ca