Award-winning Filmmaker Joins Scots Documentary Centre

An institute dedicated to improving the Scots documentary scene has added a new award-winning filmmaker to its staff.

Edinburgh-based documentary research centre, Scottish Documentary Institute (SDI) – which specialises in training, production and distribution – has brought onboard Ben Kempas as Producer of Marketing and Distribution.

Kempas – who is currently co-host of The D-Word, an online community reaching documentary professionals from 120 countries around the world – is to be tasked with working on the organisation’s online and outreach strategies, from next month onwards.    

The move follows investment from arts body, Creative Scotland, for the institute’s new Virtuous Circle project, which aims to examine how audience engagement can be utilised to boost documentary revenues.

In a statement issued by SDI, Kempas, who saw his most recent film, Upstream Battle, selected for the Toronto International Film Festival, among others, says: “I've always been very passionate about Scotland, about independent documentaries, and about building communities.

“Now for the first time ever, I'll get to combine all three of these passions in one job, thanks to SDI and Creative Scotland.”

Director of the SDI, Noé Mendelle, adds: “We’re really excited to add someone of such calibre to our full time staff.

“We’re keen to strengthen the communication of what we do and reach new audiences and stakeholders for documentaries.”

Established seven years ago, SDI is based out of Edinburgh College of Art in the capital.