August 19 - 26, 2018, Novi Sad, Serbia


The prize-winning, internationally acclaimed director Želimir Žilnik has had an illustrious career dedicated to making socially provocative and politically engaged films. Celebrated as one of initiators of the docudrama, Žilnik has, in film after film, demonstrated the extraordinary adaptability of the genre, with his uniquely critical take on social, political and economic realities. Over the course of a prolific career that includes more than fifty films—features, documentaries, shorts, television productions and series—he has mastered the techniques and the aesthetics of low-budget filmmaking.

This 8-day class examines the craft of docu-fiction film making and will feature engaging discussions with participants, daily screening programs and individual consultations with participants on their own projects. In eight 4 hour sessions Zilnik will get to the core of his approach to docu-fiction and share his insights and experience from five decades of filmmaking. The class is meant for filmmakers already working or for those wanting to cross over into docu-fiction.

In a mix of lecture-style, discussion and Q&A, 15 participants will have a unique opportunity to work with Žilnik in an intimate classroom environment, in his home town, Novi Sad. He will present his filmmaking methodology, the considerable range of techniques he’s developed over the course of a career in works that deal with social engagement, comedy and explicit political criticism. Among the crucial areas likely to be covered: the pivotal role of research in developing fictional storylines from real-life materials, the potentials and the limitations of improvisation, how to stimulate the innate theatricality of the non-actor, how to mix actors and non-actors within a single production, how to develop the scripted vs. the unscripted elements in a narrative, how to work with a cinematographer in improvisatory situations.


Who should apply?
All experienced and emerging filmmakers and film critics interested in developing their understanding of what makes a successful docu-fiction film are invited to apply.

Prospective applicants should:

  1. speak fluent English
  2. submit a fully completed online application form


Admission costs
In addition to the eight-day masterclass, a total of 32 hours of instruction, the admission fee of 500 euro per participant includes:

  1. Registration fee
  2. Eight catered lunches (August 19 – 26, 2018)

The following are not included as part of the 500 euro admission fee:

  1. Any and all travel and visa costs. Such costs are the sole responsibility of the participants.
  2. The cost of international travel health insurance
  3. Accommodation costs while in Novi Sad


Application Requirements:
For consideration, your application should include the following information:

  • a short biography (up to 250 words)
  • a full CV

Please send your application to

Application deadline: July 10, 2018
The number of participants is limited to 15.

Detailed program of masterclass [pdf HERE]

Selection of the candidates:
The candidates chosen to take part in this year’s masterclass will be informed by e-mail no later than July 15, 2018.

Admission fee is to be paid by August 1, 2018 at the latest