Arts and cultural activities, Education

Under the surface (documentary about Turkey and …


Who is behind this?

Samuel Doveri Vesterbye

European Neighbourhood Council


Idea Sketch | Proposal


Idea pitch

The documentary portrays the story of the Turkish accession process through interviews with high-ranking EU officials and Turkish diplomats. With the help of archive footage and previously unpublished notes from summits, we document an untold story of back-room diplomacy through visual art, archives and creative sound. ‘Under the surface’ takes an unconventional and truly interdisciplinary approach to Turkey’s long-standing, important and sometimes surreal relationship with its closest allies.

Where will your idea take place?

Each EU country, including all ENP counties and Accession countries.

Why does Europe need your idea?

We address three societal challenges. 1) Explaining Europe's core enlargement concepts based on inclusion, improvement and equal membership through the accession process, 2) Address a lack of accessible cultural information for European citizens about European cohesion, global affairs, enlargement and shared responsibilities, 3) Enhance lacking new forms of creatively interactive, cross-cultural and audio-visual material that can be used for popular entertainment, university education and art.

What is your impact?

We aim to reach Europeans aged between 18 and 40 with honest and new media entertainment based on investigative journalism, creative editing and in-depth interview research. The dissemination targets 400 European university faculties (Jean Monnet & IR) to screen our documentary for educational purposes and adding it to their curriculum. The documentary is diffused online and through TV broadcasters across Europe. Citizens will benefit from previously unpublished information about EU accession.

How do you get there?

Due to our teams' experience with Turkey-EU affairs and audio-visual documentary production, our approach and method is reasonably clear. Phase 1 is pre-production consisting of two researchers finding archival images from TV stations (licensing and partnerships) and liaising with DG Near, EEAS and the Turkish Ministries for access to unpublished minutes and archives. This historical research of all relevant documentation is followed by Phase 2 production: planning of interviews with officials and question writing, including two filming trips to Istanbul and Ankara. The rest of the interviews are filmed in Brussels. The crew will consist of 1 producer, 1 journalist, 1 cameraman/light/sound. Phase 3 is disseminated to universities, TV, screenings, media, bloggers and partner websites.

What is your story?


Who are you doing it for?

Citizens from European countries (television), as well as target audiences like students (university curriculum) of international relations, EU studies, Turkish studies, diplomacy, as well as young people (online) due to the audiovisual format. We aim to reach young and apathetic viewers who are more likely to associate and learn about Europe and the historical uniqueness of European accession through creative, entertaining and investigative forms of audio-visual journalism.

What makes your idea stand apart?

Four aspects make this audio-visual production different from other projects: 1) It combines visual art with politics and music, 2) it undertakes the first ever attempt at recounting the Turkish accession process through unseen archival images and documentation, 3) reaching out to Europeans by providing entertainment and education simultaneously and 4) multi-layered dissemination and partnership strategy, including use of curriculums, bloggers, media, social media, TV and university networks.

€ 50000,-

Funding requested from Advocate Europe

€ 81800,-

Total budget

Major expenses

The major expenses during audio-visual productions are usually linked to the production phase. However, due to the major research task of finding the accurate and relevant historical archival documents (image and documents) the expenses are tied to pre and post production in our case. Major expenses include archival footage research salaries, image/music copyrights, research hours to go through meetings and EU-Turkey documents, as well as office space, subtitling, translation and editing.

What do you need from the Advocate Europe community?

Comments and feedback/advice is very welcome! We are specifically interested in alternative forms of diffusion and innovative network dissemination.



Idea created on March 8, 2016
Last edit on Oct. 30, 2017

Write comment