The fund is a rolling one, with projects being developed and funded on an ongoing basis. Arte G.E.I.E. and RTÉ also work together to support projects with other broadcasters and funding bodies such as the BAI, Screen Ireland, NI Screen and Creative Europe. We also work together to introduce production companies and professionals from across France and Germany to Irish production talent to work on projects together that are of mutual interest.
Arte will, in general, invest between €30K and €80K per project/TV hour, depending on what stage they get involved in a project and what slot the project is intended for.
Most documentaries for Arte are 52 minutes, with no commercial breaks. We work into specific slots with Arte commissioning editors; while most slots are TV hours, there are some (limited) opportunities for feature-length slots also. The fund is aimed primarily at standout single docs, but we have also begun to look at multiple-part doc series, particularly in areas like natural history. Drama projects are also welcomed.
Because Arte documentaries are broadcast in several territories, voiceover-led projects which can be revoiced in several languages prior to TX/on-demand are preferable;
presenter-led docs or series do not, in general, work for Arte, except in very rare cases where the presenter is a global icon - eg Angelica Huston on Joyce by Blueprint Films.
This also limits somewhat – though as the example of Brexit: Stuck in the Middle illustrates, doesn’t prevent - our capacity to make more reactive docs together, as companies must deliver the finished project to Arte 6-8 weeks in advance of TX on Arte for translation, subtitling and revoicing in French and German, as well as Polish, Spanish and Italian for their on-demand services in those languages. This cost is carried by Arte and should not be included in your budgets.
The minimum territory/archive rights clearances requirement for any Arte co-pro is to clear for France and Germany. Preferable is to clear rights for all French- and German-speaking territories in Europe: France, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Austria. Ideally, if you can clear for all of Europe or world-wide, that is the gold-star option. So please remember to account for multiple-territory archive clearances in your budget.
Arte, like RTÉ, also have a blanket music agreement which covers the use of commercial music in the French- and German-speaking territories into which they broadcast.
How To Apply
If companies are interested in availing of the fund, they should pitch, in the first instance, to the relevant RTÉ genre head or executive producer in the normal way and via RTÉ e-commissioning, indicating if they think that the idea might be suitable for co-production with Arte. The RTÉ genre head or executive producer will then work with RTÉ’s representative to Arte, Sarah Ryder, to triage the best ideas for the fund and prepare to pitch to the relevant Arte commissioning executives.
We welcome ideas from all genres: Factual, Specialist Factual, Science, History, Current Affairs/Geopolitics/Society, Arts, Music. Particularly of interest are strong Irish stories of international interest (both ancient and contemporary history, arts and society/current affairs-style docs) and ambitious factual, specialist factual and arts documentaries which will appeal not only to the domestic Irish audience, but to audiences across Europe who are interested in Irish and European affairs.
For more information on Arte G.E.I.E.: ARTE GEIE | ARTE
For further information on the fund, Sarah Ryder manages the RTÉ/Arte G.E.I.E. co-production initiative for RTÉ and will be happy to answer any questions. Sarah.Ryder@rte.ie.