Terra Mater Factual Studios GmbH
Wambachergasse 2
1130 Vienna

T +43 1 870030 / F +43 1 87003 27609 / E office@terramater.at

Founded January 1st, 2011, Terra Mater Factual Studios is the new home of the internationally acclaimed former production team of UNIVERSUM, ORF’s Natural History Unit, and is based in Vienna.

The company is a subsidiary company of Red Bull and specialises in factual production and distribution for cinema, TV and multimedia platforms.

Walter Köhler CEO comments, “We will invest a lot of our energy in strengthening the output in our core genres – wildlife, science and history, but will move on to create top-end productions for the big screen and develop new and innovative factual formats for every media platform. Together with our worldwide partners we want to make Terra Mater Factual Studios a brand which is recognised throughout the world for its unmatched quality: for visual excellence and storytelling of the highest level.”

About Terra Mater Factual Studios

Terra Mater Factual Studios’ (TMFS) commitment to the highest production values results in premium factual programming for TV and theatrical release. Our core genres are wildlife and nature, science and history presented in blue-chip primetime series and specials. We also bring together a wide array of genres and styles to create exciting new factual and entertainment formats. And in our large cinematic projects the borders between fiction and fact become seamless and sometimes dissolve at all resulting in a different take on feature film production. TMFS collaborates with the best producers, cameramen and directors worldwide and uses the latest cutting-edge equipment to realise its cinematic dreams.

There are three key ingredients which make TMFS productions a unique viewing experience:

  • Visual Excellence: Images are more powerful than words in conveying powerful emotions and surprising insights. Fascinating camera shots and unconventional editing set us apart.
  • Innovative Technology: TMFS embraces state-of-the art recording technologies, from super-slow motion to super-time-lapse, to reveal nano-second events and processes so slow their evolution is invisible to the naked eye. Images generated by electron microscopes and computer animation give insight into the microcosm. Special cameras turn night into day. Endoscopes and medical scanners provide an inside view of living organisms. And HDTV is enhanced by a new dimension – 4K at its best.
  • Amazing Storytelling: TMFS uses the dramatic narration dynamics of the feature film to represent reality while upholding the principles of factuality. TERRA MATER presents people who understand our world and tells us stories written by real life.

Management Team

Dinah Czezik-Müller



Walter Köhler



Sabine Holzer

Head of Specialist Factual


Latest News

 Awards Season, August 2019

We’re halfway through the hot summer months and we’ve got news to share: seven nominations from the prestigious Jackson Wild Media Awards have made our August an even hotter occasion. ‘Sea of Shadows’ is in the lead with three nominations (Best Conservation, Best People & Nature, Best Theatrical), ‘Okavango’ is in the running for Best Limited Series, and as for the Best Writing category – we’re really very proud to see all of the nominees bearing a TMFS logo: ‘Attenborough’s Ant Mountain’, ‘Sex, Lies and Butterflies’ and ‘Cute little Killers’ are up against each other.

All in all, next to the recent wins at the Cannes Corporate Media & TV Awards 2019 (shout-out to ‘Dragons & Damsels’, ‘Grasslands’ and ‘Whale Wisdom’!) more than 20 new nominations have reached us since we last wrote. Australia, US, Mexico, Colombia and festivals in numerous European countries – we’re stoked!

For TMFS, June was hot: not just regarding temperatures, but also very much regarding awards.

The US International Film & Video Festival honoured us with a total of unbelievable eleven awards (‘Whale Wisdom’ snatching three, amongst them a Best of Festival/Documentary-prize).

The French Deauville Green Awards made our ‘Sex, Lie and Butterflies’ the superstars of their Spezial Prize/Biodiversity-category.

And three festivals in Mexico, the US and New Zealand, have made one of our latest Feature Documentary, ‘Sea of Shadows’, the lucky winner of such categories as ‘Audience Award’, ‘Social Awareness Award’ and more. 

Ongoing (or rather, closing) Sunny Side of the Doc 2019 brought just another honour ; the TMFS-supported entry ‘Scat Man’, excelled in the Science Pitch-Session.



The Ivory Game


The Ivory Game - Title Sequence from Kaiserlicht on Vimeo.

‘Sea of Shadows’ to premiere at Sundance Festival 2019, December 2018

November 2018: Following the award-winning Netflix original ‘The Ivory Game’, Terra Mater Factual Studios’ latest feature production ‘Sea of Shadows’ will be celebrating its world premiere in the World Cinema Documentary competition at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival in Utah, USA. From more than 14.000 submissions, only 112 films were chosen. The festival is known for its prime selection of high quality independent films and the film team is proud to premiere at this outstanding festival.

Utah/Vienna. Just after Thanksgiving, good news arrived in Vienna: the Sundance Film Festival announced the official selection of ‘Sea of Shadows’. The feature doc, produced by Austria’s Terra Mater Factual Studios, will have its world premiere on Sunday, 27th of January 2019. The Viennese production house is thrilled, as chances of being accepted there are very slim.

After the tremendous success of 2016’s ‘The Ivory Game’, which depicted the illegal ivory trade and imminent extinction of elephants, founder and CEO of Terra Mater Factual Studios, Walter Köhler, has taken on yet another pressing issue that will have audiences on the edge of their seats:

A looming disaster in one of the most spectacular environments on Earth sparks a rescue mission unlike any other. When Mexican drug cartels and Chinese traffickers join forces to poach the rare totoaba fish in the Sea of Cortez, their deadly methods threaten to destroy virtually all marine life in the region, including the elusive and mysterious whale species known as the vaquita porpoise. But a team of brilliant scientists, high-tech conservationists, investigative journalists and courageous undercover agents put their lives on the line to save the last remaining vaquita and bring the vicious international crime syndicate to justice.

Directed by ‘The Ivory Game’ award-winning director Richard Ladkani, and executive produced by Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio, Walter Köhler and Wolfgang Knöpfler from Terra Mater once again partnered with high-level international conservation champions. Köhler is convinced that films like ‘Sea of Shadows’ have the power to ignite change: “When it’s about saving an entire species from imminent extinction, it is our moral obligation as filmmakers, to send out a clear message.”

‘Sea of Shadows’ was filmed entirely on location in Mexico and China. It is a Terra Mater Factual Studios production, in association with Appian Way, Malaika Pictures, and The Wild Lens Collective. Worldwide sales are with Submarine’s Josh Braun, Dan Braun, Ben Braun, Matt Burke, and Ben Schwartz.


Wildscreen 2018 Nominations, July 2018

Terra Mater Factual Studios are delighted to receive the news of three nominations at the 2018 Wildscreen Festival edition. The world’s leading international festival celebrating and advancing storytelling about the national world has honoured two TMFS productions with three nominations in the categories “Best Animal Behaviour”, “Best Series” and “Best Cinematography”.

Wildscreen Festival takes place biannually and receives hundreds of entries of the highest standards from all around the globe in 20 categories. Those films that make it through the pre-judging rounds – three in each category – will battle for the respective Panda awards handed out during a festive ceremony in October 2018 in Bristol.

The Terra Mater Factual Studios production “Attenborough’s Ant Mountain” has been nominated for its outstanding achievements in the category “Best Cinematography”. Decades of research went into the high-end cinematography developed by Martin Dohrn and his production company Ammonite, allowing an unprecedented sense of immersion in the world of the Swiss wood ants.
“Attenborough’s Ant Mountain” is a production of TMFS in association with BBC and ABC Australia produced by Ammonite Ltd.

The TMFS production “The Lions Rule”, a three-part natural saga playing out in Ruaha National Park in Tanzania, has been nominated in the categories “Best Series” and “Best Animal Behaviour”.

Depicting never before-seen animal behaviour – the interplay and battles of powerful, different prides of lions amongst each other; the first ever recorded full sequence of lions stalking to taking-down a fully-grown giraffe and the subsequent mourning behaviour; baboons picking sides; emotionally strong, grasping and suspenseful minutes fill each of the three episodes of the series, making it a splendid candidate for the “Best Series” award as well.

The intriguing three-parter “The Lions Rule” was produced by Terra Mater Factual Studios in co-production with National Geographic Channel and Doclights/NDR Naturfilm in association with ARTE France / Unité Découverte et Connaissance and Shibumi Films.

Congratulations go out to all involved parties on the nominations.

The highly anticipated award ceremony of Wildscreen Festival will take place on October 19th, 2018 in Bristol, UK.