Our credits tell the story.

The NFTS has a tradition of enabling documentary filmmakers to find a distinctive voice that both prepares them for the Industry and makes their work a force for changing it.

Application Deadline: 08 May 2014

Course Overview

Graduates include Nick Broomfield, who pioneered a powerful new genre in documentary: the filmmaker-as- provocateur – and is now applying his documentary experience to fiction; and Kim Longinotto, whose inspirational films about women are celebrated at festivals around the world. Both help tutor the course, along with other distinguished filmmakers, many of them NFTS graduates.

Getting a first commission can be a daunting task in a crowded freelance industry, but our new documentary graduates have an excellent record of success and diversity in the films they make. Recent graduates have made many films for the 3 Minute Wonder slot and pitch for the new talent strand on Channel 4, and for development deals at the BBC. Some have put together co-production deals to produce feature documentaries for the BBC’s prestigious Storyville strand. Graduation films screen at festivals around the world, winning awards such as the Jerwood Newcomers Award, the Becks Futures Prize, the Royal Television Society's Student Award and the Grierson Awards Best Newcomer nominations.


Some of the UK's leading Documentary makers often teach at the School, including internationally acclaimed director Kim Longinotto who is one of the pre-eminent documentary filmmakers working today.

The department is led by Dick Fontaine who has directed over forty films for television and the independent media.


Graduates include Nick Broomfield (Battle for Haditha; Sarah Palin: You Betcha!, Aileen: Life and Death of a Serial Killer), Molly Dineen (The Lie of the Land) and Kim Longinotto (Pink Saris, Sisters in Law) studied here.


Year One

Built around a series of practical exercises, increasing in length and complexity. Informed and inspired by relevant traditions. Each exercise isolates and focuses on the techniques and content of a specific documentary genre. Students collaborate in various combinations with editors, cinematographers, sound designers and composers and also work alone using digital video equipment.

Year Two

Includes two projects: a graduation film in which students synthesise what they have discovered in the first year and use it to challenge conventional approaches to documentary making; the other in which they prepare at least one project to take into the professional arena.

The final stage consists of visits to film festivals, screenings of work to broadcasters, independent producers and other relevant institutions, together with seminars and workshops dealing with the commissioning process, ethical practices, legal requirements, festival potential and national and international finance.

Unlike other schools, all production costs are met by the School. In addition you will be given a cash Production Budget. NFTS students are engaged in more productions as part of the curriculum than any of our competitors.

  • Develop a personal voice
  • Put storytelling at the centre of your process
  • Study in a multi-disciplinary filmmaking environment
  • Shoot on digital formats
  • Unlike other schools, all production costs are met by the School.