The Castlemaine Documentary Film Festival (CDOC) , now in its fourth year, is an annual three day event held at the iconic Theatre Royal in central Victoria, Australia.

We are proud to offer a curated programme showcasing the very best in Australian and international non-fiction films.


Geoffrey Smith – Festival Director

Geoffrey Smith was born in Melbourne and was always fascinated by the moving image. Like many of his generation he went travelling abroad, and discovered en route a love of listening and story-telling.

In 1987 he found himself in Haiti helping to make a documentary about the first election there in 31 years, but following the discovery of a massacre of voters in a school, he was shot twice and wounded. Struggling to put his life back together in London, Geoffrey decided to film his journey back to Haiti to find the man who had so nearly killed him. This acclaimed film was shown in the BBC’s “Video Diary” series, and was very powerful for the on-screen catharsis it intimately portrayed.

Having discovered through this very personal project that the camera could be a powerful tool in helping people through difficult periods in their lives, many of Geoffrey’s subsequent films are built around this approach. Since then he has made over 24 films for all the major UK broadcasters, won 2 Emmy Awards and numerous International awards, and is drawn to observational real life dramas where deep ethical and moral dilemmas abound.

Denise Button – General Manager / Wearer of  Many Hats

Founder of central Victorian based PR and events business, Colourful Language, Denise has a passion for people, stories and the arts, and enjoys little more than when these three collide. Having spent 25 years in communications and events management in the corporate world, she now applies her experience and extensive networks predominantly to the arts sector.

Denise partners with a number of festivals, performers, and writers, as well as the occasional corporate, to bring their vision to fruition.

Getting there

Castlemaine is an easy 90 minute drive from Melbourne, 1 hour from Ballarat and under 1 hour from Bendigo, Daylesford, Kyneton and Woodend. Or make a weekend of it, with plenty of accommodation options to suit most budgets.

V/Line trains run regularly from Southern Cross Station to Castlemaine (on the Bendigo line) and back and the Theatre Royal is a 5-10 minute walk away. Click here for the current timetable.