National Film Board of Canada

NFB - Directing with the NFB

For 70 years, the National Film Board of Canada has been breaking ground in socially-engaged documentary, auteur animation, alternative drama and more!

Working with the NFB

Interested in directing or co-producing a documentary, animation, new media or alternative drama project with NFB's English Program? The following guide gives an overview of the kinds of projects we produce and how to propose an idea to us.

Evaluation Process

Within a week, we’ll send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your proposal. Your project will then go through an evaluation process. You’ll hear back from us in 6-8 weeks about whether or not your project is something we’re interested in pursuing.

If your project is something that makes a potential fit for us, there are three possible outcomes:

1. Proposals at a very preliminary stage could be approved for what we call an “Investigate.” This is an early development stage (with a maximum budget of $5,000) intended to further develop the idea and explore its potential.

2. Proposals at a more advanced stage could be approved for Research & Script development. This involves more detailed research, the writing of a treatment, preliminary shooting if necessary, the preparation of a production schedule, marketing plan and a production budget.

The final decision on whether or not to put a project into an Investigate or Research & Script phase rests with the studio’s Executive Producer.

3. Proposals at a very advanced stage could be recommended for Production.

The final decision on whether or not to put a project into Production rests with the Director General of English Program.

When a proposal is approved for one of these three stages, an NFB producer is assigned to the project. You’ll have a very close working relationship with your producer. The NFB plays an integral part in every step of the creative process.

Date Modified: 2018-04-25

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