NEXT WAVE is a post-graduate course at the Deutsche Film- und Fernsehakademie Berlin (DFFB), running from October through June, featuring visits to partner film schools and festivals. Participants must be available and present (onsite or online, depending on the general public health situation) throughout the programme.

NEXT WAVE is aimed at committed young professionals with a collaborative, creative, and entrepreneurial mindset and with backgrounds in film sales, distribution, exhibition, festivals and curatorship, marketing or audience development.

Applicants must have relevant, documented experience of three to five years in creating, producing, distributing, marketing or programming in formats that engage audiences across different platforms. An excellent standard of spoken and written English is essential. All classes are taught in English. The recommended age for participants is 25 to 35 years.

NEXT WAVE will take on up to 15 European participants (in exceptional cases up to three applicants from non-European countries will be accepted).

Application Dates

NEXT WAVE will not take place in 2021/22. We are planning a restart of NEXT WAVE with an updated structure in autumn 2022. The application process is expected to start in February 2022.

Cost and Scholarships

The programme fee is 4,000 €.
This fee covers the tuition fee as well as all costs for travel, accommodation, and accreditations related to the study trips and festival visits during the programme.

A monthly public transport ticket for Berlin will be provided for all participants for the duration of the programme (October – June).

Applicants from European Low Production Capacity Countries can apply for one of the MEDIA – Creative Europe scholarships. Applicants from Brazil can apply for a scholarship of Projeto Paradiso. See details in the FAQ section below.


Will the Covid-19 pandemic affect the NEXT WAVE programme?
We are closely monitoring developments regarding the public health situation and regulations. Depending on the situation, parts of NEXT WAVE could take place remotely as online classes.

How exactly is NEXT WAVE different from other training programmes?
NEXT WAVE is the first long-term and intensive post-graduate level programme bringing together young professionals who will reinvigorate sales, festivals, marketing, programming, and audience engagement in the European landscape and beyond. NEXT WAVE combines teaching modules with practical assignments and the development of the participants’ own projects.

For the application I need to submit two project ideas. What are you looking for?
We are asking for two ideas for an individual project from the areas of film sales, distribution, exhibition, programming or marketing you would like to work on during the course. You will develop a business plan for a project throughout the course and will graduate with it and present it to the industry. The project ideas you submit for the application does not need to be a fully developed proposal, but a brief outline where your interests lie and where you see the needs and potential for change in the industry. One page per project is completely sufficient.

How can I find out whether NEXT WAVE is the right programme for me?
To be sure applying for and attending NEXT WAVE is the right step for you, please get in contact with the programme coordinator to schedule a Skype call via

How many hours per week is the course? Is it done in weekend modules?
The programme runs from October 2021 through June 2022 and consists of 20-25 hours of seminars and workshops as well as additional individual and group work. Teaching, study trips, and group seminars will take place during three to four days per week; assignments will be done independently. Depending on the public health situation, certain modules may be taught remotely as online classes.

What does a typical week at NEXT WAVE look like?
The schedule at NEXT WAVE typically runs Monday to Thursday and includes seminars, workshops, and case studies, mostly during the day, with a part of the programme also taking place in the evenings. Study trips will also include weekends.

Can I pursue a full-time job while enrolled in the programme?
Due to the intensive nature of the course, a full-time employment during the programme will be too big of a workload. Based on the individual circumstances, we recommend participants to reduce their working time to 10 hours per week and focus mainly on the content of the training programme.

Will I receive a degree at the end of NEXT WAVE?
No official academic degree will be awarded, since this programme is outside of any bachelor or master course. The NEXT WAVE Summit and Pitch will provide you with the opportunity to present your individual project and yourself to an audience of professionals. You will receive a certificate that states the content of the curriculum, but no credits will be given. The core benefits of attending NEXT WAVE are the learning experience, the material and examples that you will be able to present to potential clients and employers as well as the international network you will build.

How high are the costs of living in Berlin?
You will have student status while participating in NEXT WAVE. The average living costs incl. rent, food etc. for students in Berlin are around 750 Euros per month.

Will there be any on or off-campus housing provided to the participants?
No housing or accommodation will be arranged or paid for you. You will need to find and arrange accommodation for yourself. However, we will point you to some helpful internet resources.

I have no previous experience in sales, distribution, curatorship, marketing or audience engagement, but I am very interested in this field. Can I still apply?
Unfortunately not. We can only consider applicants with relevant, documented experience in creating, producing, distributing, marketing or programming in formats that engage audiences across different platforms.

What is the scholarship/tuition waiver and who can receive it?
The MEDIA – Creative Europe scholarship covers the full tuition fee of 4,000 €. Only applicants from European Low Production Capacity Countries (Czech Republic, Estonia, Romania, Greece, Croatia, Portugal, Poland, Bulgaria, Luxembourg, Slovenia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Hungary, Latvia, Cyprus, Malta, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Iceland, Lichtenstein, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Republic of
Serbia, Ukraine.) can apply for a MEDIA – Creative Europe scholarship.
The Projeto Paradiso scholarship covers the full tuition fee of 4,000 € and the travel costs (Brazil-Berlin) and applicants from Brazil can apply.