The Labs

Through a series of residential workshops, international mentorship and collaborative learning, we support the development of six Australian social impact documentaries over a 12-month period.

Each year, The SHARK ISLAND DEVELOPMENT LABS support the development of six Australian documentary feature projects tackling the big issues of our time.

The Labs are led by our team at Shark Island Institute in collaboration with our extraordinary network of global and local industry leaders. Each project will receive up to $25,000 development funding.

We will provide our Lab participants with ongoing mentoring and support through a combination of two residential story-telling workshops, one-on-one meetings and industry sessions designed to hone their skills as story-tellers and social impact filmmakers.

The SHARK ISLAND DEVELOPMENT LABS draw inspiration from our peers and partners in the international arena including Good Pitch, Sundance Institute, Impact Partners and Chicken & Egg Pictures.

We are looking for feature-length projects that are still in early-stage story development. We are committed to the discovery and support of Australian filmmakers and have a preference for projects that don’t yet have broadcast, distributor or EP attachment.  SII will work with each team to optimise both distribution and potential for social impact for each project.

Development funding is provided by the Shark Island Institute over the course of the Lab program. Applicants will be asked to identify how this funding will be used to progress their project. This may include refinement of story and treatment, creation of a pitch trailer, scene selects, op doc or other materials.

The program includes two residential workshops at the Shark Island Institute Kangaroo Valley in August and November each year. Filmmakers will also participate in a series of seminars, meetings and events hosted at Shark Island Institute Dorhauer Lane, Sydney by our leading international and local industry experts.


Applications for 2018 have now closed.