The Professionalisation Program is a collaboration between Moviezone, The New Originals & CZAR Amsterdam. Its second edition kicked-off in March 2022 and 15 young filmmakers were chosen to take part. Following a series of masterclasses and final pitch presentations in front of a panel of industry experts, 3 participants were chosen for the final stage of the program. This would be to make and produce a film for The New Originals within two weeks – putting everything they had learnt to the test. Production company CZAR Amsterdam guided the process and you can watch the end result below!

Directors: Okkie van Diemen & Martijn Kuyvenhoven
DOP: Ilyas Gün
Edit: Okkie van Diemen
Producer: Safano Cotino

We asked the two directors of the movie: Okkie van Diemen & Martijn Kuyvenhoven a couple of questions about the Program. 

How was your experience of the Professionalisation Program?

O - I really enjoyed taking part - I made loads of new connections and got to know people in the film profession.

M - I found it super useful to experience a film process from start to finish in a short period of two weeks. From briefing, to treatment, to pitch, production, and post-production. It teaches you to change gears quickly and communicate openly with your team.

Can you describe the program?

O - We had a master class one day a week for several weeks. We got that master class from someone who works in and around film or does something with storytelling. We learned how they got to where they are now and what steps they take to start a project.

M - The final assignment was to make a film for The New Originals' well-known Creatives Are The New Athletes line. On the first day we were given a briefing, we had to turn this into our own concept within two days and then pitch it to TNO's team. With TNO's feedback, we could then adjust our treatment to something more innovative and, above all, productionally realistic at the time.

How did this film come about?

M - The film came about from the different visions and skills that I, Okkie and Ilyas bring to the table. Okkie is a documentary maker in heart and soul, I think more in aesthetics from my fashion and photography background and Ilyas is a very practical visual thinker with good camera skills. As all three of us were very involved in the making process, we all naturally wanted to put our tastes into it. In this, we had to make compromises with each other and thus arrived at a visually strong product. This is mainly reflected in the form of the film. Documentary images are interspersed with conceptual images and analogue photography.

What did you find special about this project?

O - I liked that we received good guidance, we could ask a lot of questions and we were made to think.

M - I found it really special to have the opportunity as a young maker to work with big players like The New Originals and CZAR. To spend two weeks at CZAR's office and get to experience some of the working atmosphere. For me personally, pitching was especially fun to do. By selling your concept to the customer, you learn a lot about your own concept.

What did you learn from the process?

O - I mainly learned that a good attitude/always being open to new opportunities is very important to build a network.

M - I learned that in a creative and production process, you have to communicate openly with each other and give and take. That it is wise to remain realistic in a short time and not to set the bar too high, while enjoying the flow.