The RESIDENCY MENA Fund is the inaugural financial support scheme launched by DOX BOX. Its aim is to support sociopolitically-engaged documentary films reliant upon the recontextualization of pre-existing audiovisual footage stemming primarily from citizen journalist and video activist material. The first cycle of The RESIDENCY Fund (Fall 2015) was launched in June with a completion deadline of 15 July. Two grantees were selected from Egypt and Syria and are now fulfilling their residency in Berlin.

Initial assessment:

  • 13 applications were submitted from 7 different Arab countries.The breakdown by country is as follows: Egypt (3), Morocco (2), Sudan (1), Jordan (1), Syria (3), Palestine (2), Iraq (1).
  • 54% of the applications were submitted within the final two days before the deadline.
  • 69% of the applications were submitted in Arabic while 31% were submitted in English. No applications were in Tamazight, Kurdish, or German.
  • 61% of the applicants are between the ages of eighteen and twenty-nine, 30% between the ages of thirty and thirty-nine, and 9% between the ages of forty and forty-nine,.
  • 35% of applicants are first-time directors.
  • Except for two applications submitted by the producers, all applications were submitted by the directors of the projects.
  • The gender split of applicants is 23% females and 77% males.  
  • Applications were made for 5 feature length documentaries, 4 short documentaries, and 4 mid-length documentaries.
  • 15% of the projects have a producer or a co-producer, or both attached.
  • 38% projects have secured funding prior to applying to The RESIDENCY.
  • Average length of audiovisual material submitted per project is 40 minutes.
  • 15% of the applications consisted of filmmaking teams with a director, co-director, and/or editor. 85% of the applications requested the appointment of an editor by DOX BOX.
  • Subjects address themes such as: education systems, ethnicities, immigration, exile and refugees, privacy and smear campaigning, revolution and resistance, war and conflict, and finally believes.

Final assessment of applications:

  • 8 eligible projects were forwarded to the Selection Committee, while 5 were notified as being not eligible within 6 weeks of the deadline.
  • The Selection Committee consisted of seasoned film producer Hind Saieh from Tunisia, seasoned filmmaker and writer Mohamed Soueid from Lebanon, and the seasoned filmmaker Mohamed AL-Daradji from Iraq.
  • The Committee thoroughly reviewed the editing sequences and footage, written treatments, and evaluated the sociopolitical context of each application.
  • The following project was granted The RESIDENCY cycle of winter 2015:
    • Happily Ever After | 40 min. | Nada Riyadh and Ayman El Amir | Egypt
    • Untitled Project | 45 min. | Anonymous Filmmaker| Syria
    • Untitled Project | 56 min. | Anonymous Filmmakers| Syria & Lebanon