Sideways Film is a documentary and factual sales agency established in 2010 that specialises in worldwide Broadcast, VOD, All Rights, Educational and in-flight licensing. We work closely with our filmmakers to ensure that every title offers a unique perspective and gets the attention it deserves.
You can get a sense of our profile by looking at the documentaries and series that we already represent. In short, we love both narrative documentaries and also more journalistic / investigative films and series. In the former we would require great characterisation, access, plot / structure and production values (and a context of world interest) and in the latter we would require new information, perhaps a counter intuitive world-view, a gripping arc and again new and exclusive access. We are open minded regarding genre but gravitate towards world affairs and social issues, the sciences, the arts and contemporary history – if it is being covered for the first time.
We believe that a documentary is not just a news item or throwaway distraction, but a source of understanding and empathy, as well as entertainment. Every one of our sales team is a cinephile and a believer in the power of film. We take a huge amount of pride in the films that we represent and continue to market our films for as long as there are territories available and the subject matter is relevant. Our films do not get lost in our catalogue as we take on a very limited number of new titles – a maximum of fifteen per year – which also enables us to find opportunities tailored to each film. We don’t aggregate or rely on volume sales.
Our favoured way of doing business is face-to-face; if you want to meet with us we will most likely be at the next festival or market you are attending. We rely on in-person meetings with clients to keep them informed of our new titles, follow up on films we may still have pending and to keep up to speed on new channels, slots or even advances in the mediums with which we can reach audiences. We attend at least eighteen markets and festivals across every continent each year – you can see our market calendar here, and in our experience this is crucial to our success.
We believe that the relationship between the producer and sales agency should be open, co-operative and transparent. At Sideways Film, we won’t make unrealistic promises to get you to sign on the dotted line, and you will never get a royalty statement only to find that ‘Miscellaneous Marketing Costs’ have been deducted. Our filmmakers make real returns, as demonstrated by the fact that they return to us with new projects – you can read what they say about us here. If your film is not a fit for us or we are unable to take on new titles, we’ll do our best to recommend another reputable agency.
We are interested in films at all stages of development, production or even completion though ideally we would like to be in dialogue before the final cut. We can often offer support – formally or informally – in closing budgets through identifying broadcaster co-pros or pre-sales, match-making co-productions or identifying relevant film fund opportunities or other sources of finance.
We are now taking on a very limited number of projects as production partners and in this capacity we are involved both editorially and in closing the budget through match-making co-productions, pre-sales and film funds, and building the best possible team around your film.
If you are looking for distribution for your new documentary or would like to consult on your film in development, then please feel free to contact us.