ITVS’s Global Perspective Project Seeks to Fund Documentaries about the Progress of Women and Girls Worldwide

Upcoming International Call Deadline is December 9, 2011

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(San Francisco, CA) — The ITVS’s Global Perspective Project (GPP) is seeking documentary submissions featuring international stories and perspectives not seen on U.S. television through its International Call initiative. Launched in 2005, the GPP has presented films from nearly 90 nations and funded more than 150 award-winning productions, including Waltz With Bashir — Golden Globe® winner for Best Foreign Language Film and Academy Award® nominee for Best Foreign Language Film. 

International Call 2012’s deadline for international producers and documentaries is December 9, 2011. International Call seeks compelling documentaries from international producers in key target regions, including the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Latin America that will feed the content pipeline for ITVS’s newly launched Women and Girls Lead, a multiyear engagement campaign focusing the power of independent documentary storytelling on the leadership and development of women and girls. 

“We continue to look for stories that will give American audiences an opportunity to learn about the stories, struggles, and triumphs of communities from all over the world,” said Claire Aguilar, vice president of programming for ITVS. “This year in particular, we are seeking documentaries that will educate and connect citizens worldwide in support of issues facing women and girls.” 

More than 50 documentaries slated to air on PBS over the next three years form the backbone of the Women and Girls Lead initiative. Three recently funded ITVS International programs are among the documentary productions included as part of the Women and Girls Lead broadcast catalogue: Solar Mamas (Jehane Noujaim) is an intimate observational documentary that follows three women with limited formal education as they take a life-changing journey from their home villages in Africa and the Middle East to India in order to become educated in solar engineering; Invoking Justice (Deepa Dhanraj) features Muslim women from a small town in South India who deliver justice in their own courts, posing a radical challenge to their traditional Muslim community and clergy; and Miss Nikki & The Tiger Girls (Jessica Douglas-Henry and Juliet Lamont) provides a rare chance to explore the lives of Myanmar’s first all-girl band, The Tiger Girls. 

“These documentaries are great examples of the extraordinary stories that are a perfect match for the ITVS International Call. We are seeking some of the world’s best independent filmmakers to tell those stories in ways that connect deeply with U.S. audiences and that exemplify the extraordinary progress women and girls are making worldwide,” continues Aguilar. 

This past year ITVS International contracted with eight international documentary projects from its 2011 International Call. The productions were selected through a competitive application process, which resulted in 476 submissions from 118 countries representing 72 languages. All eight documentary projects are slated for eventual broadcast, including primetime slots on the Emmy® Award-winning PBS series Independent Lens, P.O.V., and the international series, Global Voices

ITVS International promotes the exchange of compelling documentary films between the United States and other nations, going beyond stereotypes and headline news to provide television audiences around the world with new insight into the cultures and people who make up our global community. ITVS International Call enables independent producers from outside the United States to create documentaries for U.S. television. Through the Call, storytellers from other countries introduce U.S. audiences to their global neighbors, opening a window into unfamiliar lives, experiences, and perspectives from around the world. ITVS International Call seeks films in the production or post-production phase and encourages independent producers to submit their projects for consideration. ITVS International Call is an initiative of ITVS and funded by the Ford Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and the Wyncote Foundation. 

Women and Girls Lead is a multiyear public media initiative to focus, educate, and connect citizens worldwide in support of the issues facing women and girls. Combining independent documentary film, television, new media, and global outreach partnerships, Women and Girls Lead amplifies the voices of women and girls, expands understanding of gender equity, and engages an international network of citizens and organizations to act locally and reach out globally. By building a pipeline of some 50 public television documentaries and integrating content from partners across radio, commercial television, and beyond, Women and Girls Lead offers another model for public media to serve its mission in the 21st century. Women and Girls Lead connects key stakeholders to sustain productive dialogue and participation on the most critical issues facing local communities, the nation, and the world. For more information please visit:

Posted on November 7, 2011