Workshop Registration

Directing Documentary Film

This lecture-based course provides a basic overview from the documentary director’s point of view, guiding participants through the entire process of documentary filmmaking from development to delivery. Participants are given time to discuss proposals, scripts and basic elements of documentary expression, such as interviewing, mise-en-scène, shooting on the fly, and planning for anticipated locations. The course will conclude with a brief overview of the various sources of funding for low-budget documentary in Canada. 

The Introduction to Independent Filmmaking and Camera Theory workshops are recommended as prerequisites. This workshop is recommended as a companion to the Documentary Film Writing, The Art of the Interview, Documentary Film Editing and Producing Documentary Film workshops.​

For ONLINE WORKSHOPS, prior to the class, please create a profile on Zoom and download the free version of the application at

You will receive an email from LIFT with an invitation link to join the workshop one hour before the class begins which will prompt you to open the application or web browser. After this, the instructor will admit you into the call.

Please ensure that you log in using a Zoom account with a profile name that appears as the same name registered for the class. If not, for security reasons, you may not be permitted to join. During the workshop, we advise that you keep your microphone on mute to minimize external noise and that you unmute when participating in class discussions. Please also arrive to the session on time so the instructor can admit you before the lesson begins.

This workshop is sponsored by DRCC. Learn more at:

part 1: Mon 15 March 2021, 6 - 9 pm   
part 2: Wed 17 March 2021, 6 - 9 pm   
(Registration deadline is Mon 15 March 5:00 pm)

Instructor: Zaheed Mawani

Zaheed Mawani is a Toronto-based documentary filmmaker. He holds an MFA in Film Production from York University (Toronto) and a BA in Political Science from Middlebury College (Vermont). His short documentary Three Walls screened at festivals worldwide including Hot Docs, Internationale Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen, AFI/Silver Docs, Kassel Dokfest, and was nominated for a Canadian Screen Award. His first feature documentary, Harvest Moon, recently screened at Hot Docs, RIDM, DOXA and won awards at Cinema du reel and Central Asian Documentary Film Festival.

Category: Writing & Directing
Maximum Capacity: 15
6 hours of instruction in 2 parts$100 /member$125 /nonmember