Who We Are

The Documentary New Zealand Trust (Doc Edge) is a not-for-profit organisation founded in 2004.

Our Vision
To promote documentary, create healthy audience appreciation for documentary and make New Zealand a documentary destination on the world stage.

Our Mission
To lead and support filmmakers to develop and make compelling documentary films and to inspire the creative, business and wider communities to celebrate local and international documentary stories.

Our Programmes / Services 

Doc Edge Festival
An Oscar-qualifying, Australasia’s premiere international documentary film festival. Held annually in Auckland and Wellington, the Festival showcases the best films from New Zealand and around the world. Doc Edge includes Film Awards, Doc Talks, Docs 4 Schools, Screen Edge Forum + Doc Pitch, Story Edge World Exhibition, live events and much more.

Doc 4 Schools
An educational programme for students Year 5 to Tertiary that connects school students with documentaries from New Zealand and around the world. Docs 4 Schools offers free screenings during Doc Edge Festival as well as a VOD platform for schools across the country. 

Screen Edge Forum + Doc Pitch
An industry event that brings together local and international film, TV and other media professionals. It offers seminars, panels, masterclasses, networking opportunities and Doc Pitch, a documentary pitching forum for short or feature films and TV series.

Story Edge World Exhibition 
A showcase of digital interactive storytelling projects featuring top international and local VR, AR, installations, and digital stories curated for audiences to experience.

Doc Edge Presents
Monthly public screenings of documentaries in Auckland and Wellington.

History/ Timeline

  • Prior to 2004, there was no national documentary body to support and promote the documentary industry. Unlike other countries around the world, New Zealand did not have a festival dedicated to documentary.
    This motivated creative entrepreneurs, Dan Shanan and Alex Lee to form the Documentary New Zealand Trust, a not-for-profit charitable organisation to promote and celebrate documentary.

  • 2004 – the New Zealand documentary Trust is established.

    2005 – the inaugural DOCNZ film festival is held in Auckland and Wellington.

    2006 – the inaugural DOCNZ summit and Doc Pitch (industry events) are held in Auckland.

    2006 – the DOCNZ Festival is introduced in Christchurch and Dunedin (2006-2009).

    2009 – MOU signed with Guangzhou International Documentary Film Festival (GZ DOCS).

  • DOCNZ rebrands as Documentary Edge, the Documentary Edge Festival and the Documentary Edge Forum. 

    The Documentary Edge Campus begins as a resource centre/library to make documentary materials available to the wider community (closed in 2013).

    Doc Edge Lab is launched to help develop transmedia documentary projects (2010-2014).

  • 2012 – Start of Doc Edge Presents, monthly screening season in Auckland.

    2012 – Documentary Edge Forum renamed Screen Edge Forum.

    2013 – the Documentary Edge Festival moves to Q Theatre in Auckland and audience numbers grow by 25%.

    2014 – the Auckland Festival audiences grow by 20%. In Wellington, the Festival is held for the first time at Roxy Cinema, Miramar and audiences grow by 40%.

    2014 – the Story Edge starts with support from the NZ Film Commission for an interactive digital storytelling programme. Story Edge also receives support from NZ On Air in 2015.

    2014 – the Docs for School programme is piloted with schools attending day-time sessions during the Festival.

  • Docs 4 Schools is launched with the support of the Rei Foundation.

    Screen Edge Forum is held in Wellington for the first time at Park Road Post.

    The Festival’s 10th anniversary is held at Q Theatre and audiences grow by 18%. In Wellington, the Festival returns to the Roxy Cinema and audiences grow by 20%.

    Developing Story Edge to replace Doc Lab. 

  • Doc Edge selected as an Oscar-qualifying Festival for the Short film subject category.

    With support from Wellington City Council, Wellington is selected as the launching pad for Doc Edge events.

    The first Sandbox is held as part of Story Edge. 

    MOU signed creating the Pacific Documentary and Interactive Storytelling Alliance (PADISA).

  • Pilot In-Schools VOD Docs 4 Schools programme.

    The first Story Edge World Exhibition held in Auckland.

  • Doc Edge selected as an Oscar-qualifying Festival for Feature film subject category.

    Signed an agreement with Doc Society to run Good Pitch Pasifika.

    Doc Edge Directors, Alex Lee and Dan Shanan, selected as Edmund Hillary Fellows. 

Annual Returns
The Documentary New Zealand Trust and Screen Edge Ltd. Annual Returns at the Charities Register.

Annual Reports
The Documentary New Zealand Trust Annual Reports are available upon request.