Grants and other funding
The Final Roy W. Dean Film Grant is now accepting submissions.
Celebrating its 27th year, the Roy W. Dean Film Grant is awarded to a unique film that contributes to society. Winner will receive $3,500 cash and $30,000 in film production services to shoot and finish their project, including a film score!
Award winning composer David Raiklen will give the grant recipient $15,000 in theme music for their project. David provided music for the Emmy and Roy W. Dean Grant winning documentary “Mia: A Dancer’s Journey”. In addition, Emmy award winner Charlie Canfield will donate $6,000 in animation services to the winner.
Open until February 15, 2019
Open Call provides documentary funding and co-production support so you can complete your nonfiction work in progress, then air it on public television.
In partnership with BondIt, a film & media fund based in Beverly Hills, ScreenCraft is offering between three and six production grants per year to talented filmmakers for short film and online series that display originality, vision & exceptional potential. Grant amounts will range from $5,000 to $20,000 depending on the scale and merit of the project. We also offer matching funds for crowd-funding campaigns – see the Application Guidelines for specific details.
This program includes creative support from the ScreenCraft team and production guidance & resources from BondIt and Buffalo 8 Productions (a film company with several award-winning films to its credit).
Whether you simply have a great short screenplay or a short film that’s already in pre-production or post-production, we want to consider your short project for our grant program.
We are accepting applications from around the world (in English).
Next Late Deadline: July 31
Media Projects: Production Grants
Receipt Deadline August 29, 2018 for Projects Beginning April 2019
Film Grants Directory
Are you looking for film funding? Here is the list of the top film funding grants for filmmakers around the world. Choose which film grant best suits your independent film and then apply for film funding directly. Each film grant shows you their upcoming deadlines and by category to suit your project.
This joint initiative between Bertha Foundation and BRITDOC is the first European-based fund between £5,000 - £50,000 open to filmmakers from anywhere with outreach campaigns. From BRITDOC:
The fund is looking to support smart, strategic outreach campaigns for ambitious independent documentary films with a social issue at their core; films which have the ability to achieve real change on a local, regional or global level.
Deadline: The BFI Doc Society Fund will OPEN on Monday 21st January until Thursday 14th February at noon
Contact: Nikenna Benjamin | (305) 375-5092 | firstname.lastname@example.org
First Quarter (projects taking place between October 1 - December 31)
July 23, 2018, 11:59 PM
Second Quarter (projects taking place between January 1 - March 31)
October 22, 2018, 11:59 PM
Third Quarter (projects taking place between April 1 - June 30)
January 14, 2019, 11:59 PM
Fourth Quarter - (projects taking place between July 1 - September 30)
April 15, 2019, 11:59 PM
The Miller / Packan Film Fund supports documentaries that Educate, Inspire and Enrich. The Fund is financed through the Rogovy Foundation. We believe in the transformational power that comes from enlightening narratives and inspiring characters.
The Fund began granting in 2016. In its first year, grants totaling $150,000 will be awarded to between six and ten filmmakers. The fund operates an open call submission process, and awards are announced bi-annually. The first grants were awarded in June 2016.
Deadline: To be considered for the 2019 Winter Awards, please submit your application by 23:59 EST on November 15th, 2018
Providing up to $20,000 for a documentary in development or up to $50,000 for a documentary in production/post-production with 10+ minutes of edited footage, the Sundance Doc Fund can be a huge score for docs. From Sundance:
The Sundance Institute Documentary Fund supports cinematic feature documentaries with contemporary relevance from filmmakers in the U.S. and internationally. Proposals are evaluated on artful and innovative storytelling, originality, contemporary relevance, and potential to reach its intended audience. First time directors are eligible and no prior work is required. Films may be in any language (with English subtitles or an English dialogue transcript).
If you're just starting out on a documentary, you know how hard it is to raise money for it in the beginning — especially when you have nothing to show for it yet (because, hey, you need money to shoot!). The Catapult Film Fund will give you $5,000 to $20,000 to shoot enough footage so you can fundraise for the rest of the project. From Catapult:
Catapult Film Fund provides development funding to documentary filmmakers who have a compelling story to tell, have secured access to their story and are ready to shoot and edit a piece for production fundraising purposes. Our mission is to enable filmmakers to develop their film projects to the next level at a moment where funding is hard to find. We support powerful stories, and moving storytelling, across a broad spectrum of issues and perspectives.
If your documentary has the potential to make a difference when it comes to an important issue, the Fledgling Fund will support outreach and audience engagement strategies to an average $10-$25k. From the Fledgling Fund:
Grants support outreach and engagement for social issue documentary film and other storytelling projects that have the potential to inspire positive social change around issues that affect the most vulnerable.
After year of restructuring, it's a little unclear how many grants JustFilms will be giving out to individuals for 2016. Check out the requirements to see if you fit. Here are a few topics of docs that are not eligible: health, sports, early childhood, advocacy, educational, scientific. From the Ford Foundation:
JustFilms accepts letters of inquiry for grants year round, averaging between 800 and 1,000 inquiries. Our funds are limited, and we are able to support only a small percentage of these projects through direct grants. JustFilms strongly advises that you use the priorities and guiding application questions below to determine whether your project might be competitive in this process.
Deadline: Rolling (if you advance, you'll hear within 30 days of submission)
If you have a project, particularly one in the early stages, in which the writer, director, or producer is a woman, person of color, or member of the LGBTQ community, consider applying for this new BVEW opportunity. From BVEW:
Selected projects will receive significant discounts (15%-75%) from vendors and service providers nationwide to create savings in all stages of production, including AbelCine, Hive Lighting, Gotham Stages, and Nice Shoes. Recipients will be granted access to an exclusive Distribution Lab, presented in both NY and LA, focusing on audience building and distribution strategies. Participating companies include Lionsgate Films, FilmRise, Seed & Spark, VHX, Zeitgeist Films, and Cinetic. In addition, our sister company Big Vision Creative will choose several projects per year to co-produce and/or represent for distribution.
Deadline: The Big Vision team will develop projects with each fellow in a program kicking off in May 2018 that we will pitch together in Fall 2018.
Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Grants Database
Launched in 1996, Sloan’s Film program has awarded grants to over 500 film projects from some of the nation’s most innovative filmmakers, and has created a film development pipeline of multiple program partners though which Sloan nurtures and develops individual projects.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences hosts an international screenwriting competition established to identify new talent in screenwriting. From the Academy:
Each year, the Academy Nicholl screenwriting competition awards up to five $35,000 fellowships to amateur screenwriters. To enter, submit a feature length screenplay and entry fee via the online application when the competition is open for submissions. Fellowship winners are invited to participate in awards week ceremonies and seminars and expected to complete at least one original feature film screenplay during the Fellowship year.
Deadline: March 7 (Early deadline), April 18 (regular)
Looking for funding for your documentary? Check out the list for U.S. and international funders. Note that some funders only give grants to organizations and others only to individual artists
Panavision New Filmmaker Program
Panavision® believes in helping students and beginning filmmakers achieve their dreams. More than 25 years ago, Panavision launched the New Filmmaker Program, an ongoing grant program that loans camera packages to film schools, training programs, and independent filmmakers – at little or no charge. Panavision’s commitment to the industry's future provides student and beginning filmmakers the opportunity to work with professional grade equipment early in their careers.
The Independent Filmmaker Project
IFP’s Fiscal Sponsorship program focuses exclusively on documentary films and other works of nonfiction, short films and low-budget fiction/narrative features (50 minutes+). Deadline: 1 December