About me

I’m a documentary filmmaker and freelance editor from Berlin. I also give workshops. To get in touch, say hi to m@maxkerkhoff.at

I was born in Austria, my mother is American, my father German. Also, I  speak French and Spanish.

At Humboldt, Free University Berlin and Université Aix-Marseille, I studied European ethnology, political science and media & communication studies (MA), before earning my Diplom degree (BA & MFA) in film editing at the Film University Babelsberg Konrad Wolf.

Since 2010, I have been shooting and giving workshops in many countries, e.g. DR Congo, Rwanda, Tunesia, Ghana, Mali, Guinea, Senegal, Kosovo, Burma/Myanmar, Mexico. With my work, I have been selected for numerous programs, festivals and grants, like IDFAcademy and the DOKfest Munich-Pitch, Deutscher Dokumentarfilmpreis. In 2019, I received the Grenzgänger/ Crossing Borders grant by the Robert Bosch Stiftung and Literaturcolloquim Berlin, and participated in the European Social Documentary (ESoDoc) development program by Zelig Bozen and EU creative MEDIA. In 2020, I received the ScriptLab docu grant by the DrehbuchFORUM Wien/ the Austrian Screenwriters Guild. Clients and partners have included the UN International Trade Centre, American Academy Berlin, Deutsche Welle Akademie, the Myanmar Journalism Institute, Kwetu Film Institute, ZDF neo, ARTE, and others.

My studio is at the Atelierhaus Mengerzeile, a non-profit and self-administered art space with ca. 30 artist studios in Berlin-Treptow. Currently,  I am a member of the board.

Festival participations:

Winner BEN Young Talents Award Linear. B3Biennale des bewegten Bildes, Frankfurt 2013. (editor)

Winner DOKLeipzig Doku-Clip (Jugendmedienfestival Berlin 2009)

Winner Diamond Award at ITB 2016, entered by the United Nations World Tourism Organization

Nominated Best Debut, Latvian National Film Awards 2012, (editor)

Nominated project-in-concept Nachwuchspreis des Haus des Dokumentarfilms, DOKFEST München 2016 (director)

Pre-selection Deutscher Nachwuchsfilmpreis 2009; opening film 9th Göttingen Internat. Ethnographic Film Festival 2008, Germany.

Award Winner International Istanbul Tourism Film Festival 2016, Turkey., Award Winner 11th Film, Art & Tourism Festival 2016, Lublin, Poland., Award Winner US International Film & Video Festival 2016, Los Angeles, USA.

FEST (Espinho, Portugal), European Media Art Festival (Osnabrück, Germany), Tampere Film Festival (Finland), Molodist Festival (Kiev, Ukraine), Travelling GIEFF (Wellington, New Zealand), Worldfilm  (Tartu, Estonia), Days of Ethnographic Film  (Ljubljana, Solvenia), Werkstatt Junger Filmer  (Wiesbaden, Germany).