International doc buyers join forces for Sundance

San Francisco-based Ro*co Films has assembled a coalition of eight buyers to give the international outlets more negotiating power during this year's Sundance Film Festival. (Pictured: Ro*co's Annie Roney)
January 12, 2016

San Francisco-based sales agent Ro*co Films has assembled a coalition of eight documentary buyers to give international outlets stronger negotiating power going into this year’s Sundance Film Festival.

The Coalition of International Documentary Buyers includes Australia and New Zealand’s Madman Entertainment, Belgium’s BeTV, France’s Canal+, Israel’s DBS (YES), Denmark’s DR, Norway’s NRK and Ireland’s RTE.

With guaranteed revenue commitments from each member, the group plans to acquire a high-profile doc that is relevant to international viewers and provides unique access into a story.

A spokesperson for Ro*co tells realscreen that only one film will be pursued initially. Coalition partners have been asked to review and rate the list of available docs. The selection will take place at the festival once screenings have occurred.

“To maximize audience, impact and revenue on a global scale, it’s critical that foreign market opportunities be considered from the beginning,” said Ro*co founder and MD Annie Roney (pictured) in a statement, adding that the coalition “will give doc filmmakers a clear picture of where their film will travel with guaranteed revenue attached.”

“I am happy to try new ways to ensure that broad audiences will have free access to the most important documentaries,” added DR’s head of documentaries Mette Hoffmann Meyer. “Too many important films are seen by too few in this new, dangerous to public knowledge, fragmented media landscape.”

The 2016 Sundance Film Festival runs from January 21 to 31.

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.