Documentary Pitch Deck Guide (Template Included)

Pitch Expert. Ex Advertising.

$100mill In Funding. Bald Since 2010.

When you think about the great ones, like Attenborough, Neil, Grills, it’s always the narrative, lead character and visuals that come to mind.

What does this have to do with making a documentary pitch deck? 

Everything. If you don’t show that your documentary idea has a strong narrative, a charming character and heart stopping visuals, you’re not getting funded.

Or in the words of the great Neil, get over it. But in this reality, space is not your last frontier. 

Hey dearest, I’m Viktor, a pitch deck expertcreative strategist and burger lover. I’ve been a pitch deck expert for the past 10 years and helped clients raise millions and win pitches, with my unique approach to creating pitch decks.

By using this guide and the template, you’ll be able to create a killer documentary pitch deck, and get funded faster.

Let’s start with the simple stuff.

Hold on. Before you go and spend 20 hours building a deck…

Consider doing what 100s of others like you did. Let me help you develop a killer pitch deck and save 20+ hours of your time for a fraction of the cost. All it takes to start is a free 30 min call with me.

The least you will get is 10 actionable tips & strategies to own that next presentation, worth $599, for free.


What is a Documentary Pitch Deck?

documentary pitch deck

A documentary pitch deck is a visual and written document that explains the concept and details of a proposed documentary film project to potential investors, producers, and distributors. It is an essential tool used in the industry to showcase the viability of the project by outlining the storyline, production budget, target audience, and distribution plan. 

A pitch deck generally includes a logline, background information about the topic, a treatment or synopsis of the documentary, a production timeline, financial projections, and the credentials of the production team. 

The pitch deck is meant to be a concise and compelling presentation that captures the essence of the documentary and convinces investors and distributors to fund or distribute the project. Documentary pitch decks require thorough research and clarity of purpose to make an impactful impression on the stakeholders.

What does a Documentary Pitch Deck Presentation Consist Of?

A documentary pitch deck presentation typically consists of a series of slides that contain information about the documentary project. The presentation is a visual aid designed to persuade potential investors or networks to invest in the film.

The deck usually includes a summary of the documentary’s subject matter, the story’s arc, and the themes it explores. Additionally, there should also be information about the production team, the budget, and any past successes or accolades. 

The pitch deck is an essential tool in securing funding or distribution for the documentary. It is crucial that the presentation is well-organized, clear, and compelling to make a strong impact on the audience.

What Should Not Go in Your Documentary Pitch Deck?

When putting together a pitch deck for your documentary, it’s important to keep in mind what doesn’t belong. Firstly, avoid going too in-depth about your personal background or journey into documentary filmmaking, as it can take away from the main focus of your project. Avoid using industry jargon or terminology that may confuse or alienate potential investors.

It’s also important not to overwhelm your pitch deck with too much information, focus on the highlights of your project instead. Lastly, be sure to omit any unrealistic or unfounded promises, as this can lead to disappointed investors and a loss of credibility for you and your project. Keeping these things in mind will help you craft a concise and effective pitch deck.

Key Points for a Successful Documentary Pitch Deck 

A successful documentary pitch deck must have clear and concise key points that effectively convey the story, vision, and potential impact of the project. The pitch should begin with a strong opening that immediately captures the attention and establishes the subject matter of the documentary.

The pitch should also include a detailed synopsis that outlines the narrative or themes of the documentary and identifies the target audience. To help you improve your narrative, check this selection on the best books for pitching. The authors have won billions in $ thanks to their ability to create stories when pitching and are sharing their methods with you.

Information about the existing market and competition should be included, along with a clear explanation of the filmmaker’s unique perspective and approach.

Lastly, a realistic budget and distribution plan should be outlined, along with any potential partnerships or funding sources that have already been secured. In order to ensure a successful pitch deck, it is crucial to thoroughly research the topic, refine the message, and practice the presentation to confidently and effectively sell the project to potential investors or partners.

Proof Of Concept For Your Documentary Pitch Deck 

A Proof of Concept (POC) is an important component of a documentary pitch deck. It is a brief trailer or snippet of the documentary that showcases its essence and captures the audience’s attention. POCs should be succinct, impactful, and communicate the essence and tone of the filmmaking.

POCs essentially provide investors and production companies with a glimpse of what the completed film will look like.

It should highlight the film’s visuals, direction, and storyline to persuade the investors further to greenlight the project.

An impressive POC can boost investors’ confidence and bring in more financial backing, leading to the successful production of the documentary. With this, it’s important to create a POC that captures the potential of your documentary thoroughly.

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It’s 1O crucial books that will help you improve the design and structure of your presentations, besides improving its delivery. Check it out below.

The Exact Documentary Pitch Deck Slide Structure Template You Should Steal

Title Slide:

  1. Documentary Title and Logo
  2. Tagline or Slogan
  3. Presenter’s Name and Title
  4. Date

Slide 1: The Subject and Central Theme

  1. Introduce the subject or topic of the documentary
  2. Describe the central theme or message
  3. Explain the relevance and importance of the topic to the target audience

Slide 2: The Problem or Issue

  1. Define the challenges or issues that the documentary seeks to explore
  2. Highlight the pain points or gaps in understanding or awareness
  3. Use statistics or real-life examples to emphasize the magnitude of the issue

Slide 3: Target Audience and Market Opportunity

  1. Identify the target audience for your documentary
  2. Describe the demographics, interests, and motivations of your target audience
  3. Present the market opportunity, including potential viewership and distribution channels

Slide 4: Documentary Format and Style

  1. Explain the format of the documentary (e.g., series, feature-length, short)
  2. Describe the visual and storytelling style (e.g., cinematic, observational, interview-driven)
  3. Provide examples of similar documentaries or styles to give context

Slide 5: Synopsis and Story Arc

  1. Provide a brief overview of the documentary’s story
  2. Outline the key events or milestones in the narrative
  3. Describe the main characters or interview subjects and their roles in the story

Slide 6: Visuals and Media

  1. Showcase compelling visuals, including photos, video clips, or artwork related to the documentary
  2. Include relevant media, such as newspaper articles, archival footage, or social media posts
  3. Use these visuals and media to support the documentary’s narrative and style

Slide 7: Production Timeline and Milestones

  1. Present a timeline for the documentary’s production, including pre-production, production, and post-production
  2. Outline key milestones and deadlines, such as location scouting, shooting schedules, and editing
  3. Describe any contingencies or risks associated with the production timeline

Slide 8: Production Team

  1. Introduce key team members, their roles, and their relevant experience
  2. Highlight any industry experts, consultants, or advisors involved
  3. Describe how the team is positioned to successfully produce the documentary

Slide 9: Budget and Funding

  1. Provide an overview of the documentary’s budget, including costs for pre-production, production, and post-production
  2. Describe any current funding sources or partners
  3. Detail the amount of additional funding needed and how it will be allocated

Slide 10: Distribution and Marketing Strategy

  1. Outline your distribution plan, including potential platforms, film festivals, and broadcasters
  2. Describe your marketing strategy to reach your target audience and generate interest
  3. Provide an overview of your promotional budget and expected return on investment

Slide 11: Social Impact and Call to Action

  1. Explain the potential social impact of the documentary
  2. Detail the desired outcomes or changes the documentary aims to inspire
  3. Describe any calls to action or audience engagement initiatives associated with the documentary

Slide 12: Thank You and Contact Information

  1. Express gratitude for the audience’s time and consideration
  2. Provide contact details for further discussion or follow-up
  3. Include any relevant social media handles or website URLs

A Documentary Pitch Deck Idea To Inspire You

Slide 1: Elevator Pitch Slide

  • Documentary Title: “Earth’s Guardians”
  • Subtitle: “Preserving Our Planet for Future Generations”

Slide 2: Documentary Concept

  • Problem: Environmental degradation, climate change, and loss of biodiversity.
  • Solution: “Earth’s Guardians” is a compelling documentary that sheds light on the urgent need for environmental conservation and showcases inspiring stories of individuals and organizations making a difference.
  • Key Themes: Climate action, wildlife conservation, sustainable practices, and community-led initiatives.

Slide 3: Target Audience

  • Demographics: Environmentally conscious individuals, nature enthusiasts, and those interested in sustainable living.
  • Potential Reach: Projected viewership based on the interest in environmental documentaries and partnerships with streaming platforms.

Slide 4: Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

  • USP: “Earth’s Guardians” offers a powerful and visually stunning portrayal of environmental issues and the people working tirelessly to protect our planet.
  • Competitive Advantage: Access to remote locations, exclusive interviews with renowned environmentalists, and a narrative that evokes empathy and inspires action.

Slide 5: Impact and Call to Action

  • Call to Action: Outline the desired impact of the documentary, such as raising awareness, promoting sustainable practices, and encouraging viewers to support environmental organizations.
  • Partnerships: Highlight potential partnerships with environmental NGOs, educational institutions, and relevant brands for outreach and impact campaigns.

Slide 6: Production Team

  • Experienced Filmmakers: Showcase the credentials and previous work of the documentary’s director, producers, and cinematographers.
  • Passion for the Subject: Demonstrate the team’s commitment to environmental issues and their ability to tell compelling stories.

Slide 7: Distribution Strategy

  • Film Festivals: Outline plans to submit the documentary to renowned film festivals, aiming for recognition and industry exposure.
  • Streaming Platforms: Discuss potential distribution agreements with leading streaming platforms to maximize viewership and accessibility.

Slide 8: Funding and Financing

  • Budget Overview: Provide a breakdown of the budget, including production costs, post-production expenses, and marketing efforts.
  • Financing Strategy: Describe funding sources, such as grants, crowdfunding campaigns, and potential partnerships with impact investors or environmental foundations.

Slide 9: Outreach and Engagement

  • Educational Resources: Detail plans for developing educational materials and curricula for schools and universities to extend the documentary’s impact.
  • Community Screenings: Highlight strategies to organize screenings and Q&A sessions in local communities, engaging with audiences directly.

Slide 10: Next Steps

  • Call to Action: Schedule a meeting to discuss potential distribution partnerships, investment opportunities, and collaborations with environmental organizations.

Remember, this example is purely hypothetical, and you can adapt it to fit your unique documentary business idea. The key is to clearly communicate your documentary concept, showcase the impact you aim to achieve, highlight your production team’s expertise, and outline your distribution and engagement strategies.

Looking for more guidance? Check out my slide by slide documentary pitch deck outline or biopic pitch deck outline.

Get Your Copy Of The $10mill Pitch Deck Template

If you’re pitching a documentary, you need a nice and tidy pitch deck to grab the attention of buyers and investors.

The good news is you don’t have to make decks from scratch. 

Creating an effective documentary pitch deck is all about knowing what slides to include. 

You can find tons of templates on sites like Canva, Slidesgo and Google Slides, but none of them will align with the truth of the brand you represent precisely.

What will happen is you’ll need to spend hours adjusting these templates to fit your brand guidelines. 

There’s a better way and award winning directors like Jon Sumple, Emmy award winner Eric Longs, and famous actor Austen Jaye, have seen why using my template makes it easier to get what you ask for.

With the help of this customizable template, you can essentially take a bite of the pie and get your perfect documentary pitch deck created and ready for your platform.

You can then modify and personalize this however you want, but I bet you won’t need to.

Get the template that helped companies win $10,000,000+ in funding, deals and investments just with one click! 

Attenborough Fans Also Ask:

How do you pitch a Netflix documentary?

Pitching a Netflix documentary can be a daunting task, but it’s worth the effort if you have a compelling story to tell. With millions of viewers around the world, Netflix is a great platform for sharing important narratives and bringing important issues to light.

When pitching your documentary, it’s important to start with a strong hook that captures the audience’s attention right away. 

Think about what makes your story unique and why people should care about it. It’s also important to have a clear and concise outline of your story, highlighting the key characters, themes and narrative arc. Finally, make sure you have a strong team in place with experience in the field of documentary filmmaking, as this will help give Netflix confidence in your ability to deliver a high-quality product.

Overall, a successful Netflix documentary pitch requires a strong combination of creativity, passion and business savvy.

How do you present a documentary pitch?

Presenting a documentary pitch can be a daunting task, but with the right preparation and delivery, it can be a successful one.

Firstly, it is important to have a clear understanding of the theme, subject matter and target audience for the documentary. Once these elements are established, the pitch should begin with a compelling opening that grabs the attention of the audience.

The pitch should then provide a thorough and concise explanation of the documentary’s narrative arc, key characters, and the overall production value.

It is also important to have a strong selling point for the documentary, such as unique access to a story or previously unseen footage. Audio-visual aids such as trailers or images can be used to support the pitch, and a Q&A session at the end of the presentation can help to demonstrate knowledge and passion for the topic.

Ultimately, a successful documentary pitch should leave the audience feeling informed, engaged and excited about the project.

How do you develop a documentary idea?

Developing a documentary idea can be a challenging process, but there are some helpful steps to follow.

First, identify a topic that you are passionate about or interested in exploring. This could be a social issue, a historical event, a person’s life story, or a unique cultural tradition.

Next, conduct research on your topic to determine if it has enough depth to sustain a documentary. This involves reading articles, watching videos, and interviewing experts in the field.

Once you have your research done, develop an outline for your documentary that includes a clear narrative arc and characters that will help tell the story.

Finally, determine the filmmaking style that will best serve your story, such as fly-on-the-wall, observational, or interactive filmmaking, and start filming. Remember that the most important part of developing a documentary idea is to have a persuasive thesis and plan early in the process to ensure that you remain on track throughout the filming process.

Final Thoughts

You might not get Morgan Freeman to narrate your documentary, but you will get a great deck that will show investors why your idea deserves the funding you ask for.

For more details about creating and structuring the ideal and effective deck, feel free to check out the main page. I got tips, tricks, mistakes and more for you to use and abuse!

You got this!

But if you don’t got it:

Consider doing what 100s of others like you did. Let me help you develop a killer pitch deck and save 10 hours of your time for a fraction of the cost. All it takes to start is a free 30 min call with me.

The least you will get is 10 actionable tips & strategies to own that next presentation, worth $599, for free.

Or visit my pitch deck service page for more info.

More Resources

Check my cornerstone guide on pitch decks that helped my clients win more than 4,000,000$ in funding:

You’ll learn how to create a pitch deck by following my bulletproof step-by-step guide that helped my clients get $4+mill in funding. It includes:

  • How to build the slides (including elevator pitch slide, financials slide, and more)
  • Startup pitch deck examples
  • What investors need to see
  • What a pitch deck needs to be
  • What a pitch deck can’t be
  • Tips and tricks when creating a pitch presentation

Check out all the other pitch deck guides here:

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