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2003: "History·Culture "

In 2003, an International DocumentarySeries Academic Seminar with the theme of “History·Culture” was held inGuangzhou. The seminar received international attention and 147 films from 13 countrieswere sent for competition. The jury included almost all the documentary expertsUNESCO dispatched. Chinese film Old Mirror (《老镜子》) won the Grand Jury Prize and the seminar was agreat success.

2004: "Adolescents and Children"

The event was renamed as Guangzhou International Documentary Conference in 2004 and it became the only domestic trading platform for international documentary films at that time. The Adolescents and Children theme attracted 115 films from 23 countries and regions to come for competition. Chinese film “Kindergarten” (《幼儿园》) was awarded the Grand Prize, Poland’s “A Girl Named Dasha” won the Merit Prize, Japanese film “Japanese Education” won the Special Prize; “Born Bead” and “Tom W.” from Poland, “Three Generations, one Stage: First Steps to Mastery” from Japan and “Star kiss: Circus Girls in India” from Holland won the Academic Award.

2005:" Women Today"

In 2005, GuangzhouInternational Documentary Conference was elevated and hosted by StateAdministration of Radio, Film and Television and People’s Government ofGuangdong Province and  380 entries from46 countries and regions were submitted for GZDOC themed “Women Today”.“BrideKidnapping in Kyrgyzstan” from Kyrgyzstan won the Grand Prize and the JuryPrize was won by Chinese film“Big Family” (《大家庭》) . Special Prizes for best Direction were awarded to Denmark's“The German Secret”, Israel’s “Keep Not Silent” and Canada's “Post Partum”. TheChinese Producer Prize for Best Reportage was won by “Langjin and Her Sisters” (《朗金和她的妹妹们》)and “Sacred Memory” (《记忆的伤痕》).

2006: "A Focus on Poverty"

GZDOC 2006 focused on poverty and attracted 217 films from 48 countries tocome for competition. “Hercules Ventures into the World” from Poland won theGrand Prize, Jury Prize was won by the Chinese film “Shelter” (《房子》) and the BestDirector Prize was awarded to Poland’s film “Corpus Christi”. “Armenia’s DinnerTime” was awarded the Best Short Film Prize. The Best Community Issues Awardwas won

2007: "Olympic Journey "

The theme of Guangzhou International Documentary Conference 2007 competition was“Olympic Journey”. 232 films from 39 countries came for the festival. “TheWarrior” from Poland was awarded the Grand Prize and the Jury Prize was won bythe Chinese film “The Olympic Dream in a Village” (《龙吟水乡》). The Award for Most Original Perspective was won by Canada’s “ChairmanGeorge” and the Award for Best Storytelling was awarded to “Fairies’

Ultimate Dance, RhythmicGymnastics-Prayer for Beijing”. Mention Speciale was granted to Canada’s “IrisChang: The Rape of Nanking”, Chinese film “Lady Confucius” (《孔夫人》),Poland’s “Tell Me Why” and Australia’s “4”.

2008: "Earth, Our Home"

The theme of Guangzhou International Documentary Conference 2008 competitionwas “Earth, Our Home”. 118 films from 40 countries were submitted to GZDOC 2008competition. 355 films from 37 countries are selected to the screening. “Peacewith Seals” from Czech Republic won the Grand Prize. China’s “Living withShame” (《瓦全》)won the Jury Prize. Special Jury Award was granted to Germany’s “DetectingDanger”(Award for Best Storytelling), France’s “School on the Move”(BestDocumentary on Humanity), Denmark’s “A Killer Bargain”(Best Documentary onsocial survey), Montenegro’s “The Thirst of a Stone Sea”(Best DocumentaryDirector) and Canada’s “The Last Continent”(Best Documentary Cinematography).

2009: "Sunshine in Life "

The theme of Guangzhou International Documentary Conference 2009 competitionwas “Sunshine in Life” and it attracted 510 films from 60 countries to come forcompetition.

“For the Best and for the Onion” from France and Niger won the Grand Awardfor Subject and Jury Prize was awarded to Holland’s “Another Utopia”. The BestChinese Director Award was won by “For the Love of Shakespeare” (《爱上莎士比亚》), directed byZhu Guangchun’s, “Grassroots” (《草根》), directed by HanLei and “The Living: Mianzhu” (《生者 • 绵竹》), directed by Jia Ding. “Forgetting Dad”from Germanywon the Special Jury Prize.

2010: An Ever Mature Festival

For the first time, Guangzhou International Documentary Conference 2010 competition wasopen to films of any themes. There were 576 films from 58 countries coming forcompetition. Best Documentary on Science & Technology & Education werewon by “The Light Bulb Conspiracy” from Spain and “The Mermaid’s Tears” fromFrance. Best Documentary for Wildlife & Environment were won by China’s“Paradise of Milu” (《麋鹿家园》) and Denmark’s “Changes inShanghai”.

2011: Market Oriented

In 2011, Guangzhou International Documentary Conference has changed itsname to Guangzhou International Documentary Film Festival, China (GZDOC). Thefestival initiated its market oriented strategy and attracted 683 films from 56countries to come for competition in 2011. For the first time, GZDOC set up theBest Multimedia Short Documentary Film .The Special Jury Award was won by “TheNext Life” (《活着》),from China and “Argentinean Lesson” from Poland won the Grand Jury Award.

2012: “Golden Kapok Award” Initiated

GZDOC 2012  was held from December3rd to 7th and became market operated. The “Golden Kapok Award” was initiated.It started kinds of ways to call international entries, with 1488 films from 65countries to come for competition, screening, pitching and Doc Shop. “A Bite ofChina” (《舌尖上的中国》) from China won the Grand Jury Prize and the Best Documentary Awardwas won by Israel’s “Five Broken Cameras”.

2013: Forging International Brand, Meeting Market Needs

GZDOC 2O13 has further perfected its content and the six sessions“Completion, DocuMart, Industry Communication, Professional Forum, DocRoads andScreening”. GZDOC 2013 was comprised of 38 programs, attracting 2071 films from72 countries/regions to come for competition, facilitating documentarycontracting, worth RMB ¥150 million. The scale of the festival, the number of competingfilms, the number of guests received and trade volume were all unprecedented.

2014: With The Largest Number of Entries in Asian Documentary Festivals

GZDOC 2014 has attracted nearly 200 domestic and overseas institutionscoming for the festival, facilitating documentary contracting, worth  nearly RMB ¥200 million,with 3054films from 85 countries to come for competition, screening, pitching and DocShop, set a record for the documentary festivals in Asian region. “112Weddings”(112场婚礼》)and other 13documentaries won the awards.

2015: Salience of National Cultural Card Effect

GZDOC 2015 has become the largest international documentary film festivalin Asia. The festival has built partnership with organizations and festivalssuch as GIORNATE DEGLI AUTORI (Italy), Sunny Side of the Doc (France), Asia-PacificBroadcasting Union (ABU) etc..GZDOC is one of the best platforms for exportingChinese culture and serves as an important part in international documentaryindustry.

2016: Record for Our Country andCommunicate the World

GZDOC 2016 has broken the Asian recordby attracting 4059 films from 111 countries to its competition. There were 2375attendees, including international buyers, producers and award-winningdirectors, gathering with 561 organizations from home and aboard during thefestival. Contracts signed during GZDOC 2016 worth nearly ¥400,000,000RMB.

“China Story” Pitching Session was initiated in 2016.The pitch aims to provide a platform for “China Story” co-productions and tobridge investors, producers and distributors.

2017: 4239 Applicationsfrom 113 Countries/Areas

GZDOC 2017draws 3014 attendees, 613 organizations, including 478 domestic organizationsand 135 foreign originations, joint the festival. There are 4239 productions from133 countries applied for the competition, including 44 One-Belt-One-Road countries.The value of intended trade is over ¥519,000,000 RMB.

GZDOC 2017 “ChinaStory” Pitching session received 150 applications from 24 countries, 30 ofwhich are invited to pitch during the festival. GZDOC has built partnerships withmore the 50 foreign organizations and festivals in order to promotehigh-quality Chinese projects to the world.

2018: Documenting Today for Tomorrow

GZDOC 2018 received a record-breakingapplication of 4,542 from 122 countries/regions, 6 of which were nominated forthe Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. 212 projects from around theworld were submitted to “China Story” Pitching Session. These projects cover adiverse range of themes including travel, wildlife, music, underwaterarcheology, education, sports, women and elderly.

“Premiere in Guangzhou”, the brand newstrand of Golden Kapok Screening, was launched in GZDOC 2018. The event hosted11 film premieres.