Saturday, May 30
Virtual Documentary Filmmaking Session
Registration is open until January 1, 2038

Originally slated to take place in Charlotte, NC, we’re going virtual. Welcome to all! We are still celebrating North Carolina by dedicating time for resource gathering and community-building for artists in the southern United States.  

How do documentary filmmakers nurture their artistic voice and cultivate successful creative collaborations?

Join Sundance Institute’s Documentary Film team for part one of the day (1:00 p.m. EST), where we'll discuss building your body of work as a documentary filmmaker with Cecilia Aldarondo, director of MEMORIES OF A PENITENT HEART, and developing productive, healthy relationships with your creative team with Jacqueline Olive, Don Bernier, and Bob Edwards from the documentary ALWAYS IN SEASON.

We'll begin part two of the session at 3:30 p.m. with a focus on opportunities for nonfiction creators living in the U.S. South. Artist support organizations from across the region will discuss creative and financial resources available to nonfiction filmmakers, confronting the unique challenges of working in the South. 

Organizations represented will include: Austin Film Society, FilmGate Miami, House of Pentacles, Indie Grits, Indie Memphis, New Orleans Film Society, Oolite Arts, Sidewalk Film Center + Cinema,  Southern Circuit by South Arts, Southern Documentary Fund, Working Films

Stick around for a virtual social hour at 4:30 p.m. to meet fellow nonfiction creators.

Topics will include:

  • How to build a sustainable foundation in nonfiction filmmaking

  • How to develop productive and healthy relationships with your team

  • Unique challenges faced by documentary filmmakers in the U.S. South

  • Resources available to Southern documentary filmmakers

Download the Zoom desktop client for an optimal experience. (Please note: Live event capacity is capped at 1000 attendees.  A recording of the event will be posted to this page within 24 hours of the event ending for anyone unable to attend live)

Scroll down to submit your questions or comments in advance of the session under “JOIN THE DISCUSSION” below.

To learn more about Sundance Institute’s Documentary Film Program click here.


This program is presented by Sundance Institute and is made possible by generous support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

The John S.and James L. Knight Foundation is a national foundation with strong local roots. We invest in journalism, in the arts, and in the success of cities where brothers John S. and James L. Knight once published newspapers. Our goal is to foster informed and engaged communities, which we believe are essential for a healthy democracy. For more, visit

Learn more about the Knight Fellows Project and other upcoming events at

We thank the Charlotte-based organizations we collaborated with: Charlotte 48 Hour Film Project, Charlotte Black Film Festival, The Charlotte Unconventional Film School, and Cine Casual.

Cecilia Aldarondo makes films at the intersection of poetics and politics. Her features LANDFALL (2020) and MEMORIES OF A PENITENT HEART (2016) were both selected to premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival and air on POV. Aldarondo is a 2019 Guggenheim Fellow, a 2017 Women at Sundance Fellow, and two-time MacDowell Colony Fellow. more...
JACQUELINE OLIVE is an independent filmmaker with fifteen years of experience in journalism and film. Her award-winning debut feature documentary, ALWAYS IN SEASON, premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival and was awarded the Special Jury Prize for Moral Urgency. It broadcast on PBS in February 2020, and Jackie was recently profiled as one of Variety's "10 Filmmakers To Watch." more...
Don Bernier is an Emmy-nominated documentary film editor. Most recently, he cut ATHLETE A, which will premiere on Netflix this summer. Bernier’s editing credits also include the Sundance award-winning ALWAYS IN SEASON, the Oscar shortlisted CHARM CITY and AN INCONVENIENT SEQUEL: TRUTH TO POWER, AUDRIE & DAISY and THE GENIUS OF MARIAN. Don is also a doc branch member of the Academy. more...
Sound Designer & Re-Recording Mixer
Bob Edwards is a Sound Designer, Editor and Re-Recording Mixer at Skywalker Sound. In his thirty years at Skywalker, Bob has contributed to narrative feature films, documentaries, TV and film scores. Many of his projects have appeared at Sundance, followed by releases on HBO, PBS, Netflix and in theaters. Bob is currently sound designing and mixing PLAYING FOR KEEPS for Jamie Redford's KPJR Films. more...
Interim Director, Documentary Film Program
Kristin Feeley oversees creative Labs and Fellowships at the Documentary Film Program, which include five residential artist-focused Labs. She co-programs the annual Creative Producing Summit and programs for DFP-supported artists at Sundance Film Festival, which serves over 150 artists annually. She created the Documentary Creative Producing Fellowship, the Contributing Editor Fellowship as well as the Nonfiction Critics Fellowship, the first Fellowship within the DFP to support writers and cultural critics. Kristin is committed to supporting all artists who contribute to a collaborative, inclusive artistic process in independent nonfiction. She plays a staff advisory role with the Sundance Documentary Fund. Prior to Sundance, Kristin worked in social policy research and arts nonprofits before pursuing a Masters in Film at University of Glasgow. more...
Director, Documentary Fund, Documentary Film Program
Los Angeles, CA, USA
Hajnal is the Film Fund Director at the Sundance Institute, where she finds, cultivates and finances bold, cinematic, non-fiction storytellers from around the globe. In addition to overseeing the granting of $1.5 - 2 million dollars per year, Hajnal provides creative and editorial advice to supported films and filmmakers. Recent films supported by the Sundance Documentary Film Program include Hale County, Strong Island and Last Men in Aleppo. Hajnal serves as a panelist, nominator and industry advisor for international film festivals, pitch forums and funds. She is currently a Design Studio Lecturer at Sci-Arc for their Fiction and Television Masters Program. She holds a MSc in Public Management from SDA Bocconi School of Management in Italy and a Bachelor of International Business and German from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada and has worked for nonprofits and government agencies around the world. Hajnal also works with community and arts-based nonprofits in LA. Hajnal is fluent in Hungarian. more...
Manager, Documentary Fund, Documentary Film Program
Paola joined the Sundance Institute DFP team in 2018 to manage the Film Fund and all its activities. For over four years, Paola managed non-fiction programs for the NY based non-profit IFP (Independent Filmmaker Project), including the Documentary Labs and Spotlight On Documentaries, the non-fiction component of the IFP Project Forum. Prior to joining IFP, Paola supported grant-making and productions at Cinereach. Paola started her career in London, working in both festival programming and documentary production. She is currently an adviser for the newly born DocLands (CA Film Institute). Paola holds a dual degree in Social Anthropology and Media from Goldsmiths, University of London. more...
Manager, Artist Support and Labs, Documentary Film Program
Enrique manages the Sundance Documentary Creative Labs, which include the Edit and Story Lab, Music and Sound Design Lab, Nonfiction Director’s Lab and the Contributing Editor Fellowship. Across all programs and grants, Enrique serves and supports close to 80 artists annually. Additionally, Enrique supports DFP’s international work, particularly in Latin America. He also plays a staff advisory role with the Sundance Documentary Fund, awarding $1-2 million per year in grants to projects globally. Prior to Sundance, he was an integral part of Ambulante California as a film programmer, and has actively worked in other arts organizations such as Film Independent. Enrique was born and raised in Bogotá, Colombia and is also a filmmaker who’s produced and directed short films that have played in film festivals around the world. Enrique received his BFA in Film and Television from the New York Film Academy and is currently working on his first feature film. more...
Assistant, Documentary Film Fund, Documentary Film Program
Daniel oversees the review and evaluation of SDF applicants for Special Opportunity Funds and the Short Documentary Film Fund. He also assists in the review and grantee selection of General Fund applicants, and edits the Documentary Film Program Newsletter. Oakland-born, Daniel also grew up in Ohio, Texas and El Salvador. Daniel holds a BA in History and BFA in Film/TV Production from La Sierra University. Daniel is also a creative director who has directed short films, short plays, and fashion shows. Prior to Sundance, he worked at The Mill LA and at Film Independent. more...
Operations Director, Artist Programs
Park City, UT, USA
Eva Rinaldi serves as director of community programs within the department of Impact, Engagement and Advocacy, focusing on regional artist development and audience engagement. Eva has a master’s in community leadership from Westminster College with a focus on advocacy. She represents her community by serving on local boards and is politically active. more...

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