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$20-$40 000 funding available from the Sundance Documentary Fund

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Finance & Funding 2nd Nov 2017 Sundance

The Sundance Documentary Film Program supports non-fiction filmmakers worldwide in the production of cinematic documentaries on contemporary themes. Established in 2002 with founding support from Open Society Foundations, the Program is a vibrant global resource for independent non-fiction storytelling. Recent projects include The Square, The Queen of Versailles, Rich Hill, The Invisible War and The Genius of Marian.

Led by Tabitha Jackson, the Documentary Film Program believes that art changes the way we reach people. We focus on those values of Art, Reach and Change through encouraging excellence and experimentation in form; championing under-represented voices; facilitating the strategic distribution of grantee projects where needed, and supporting the social and creative impact of this work upon release.

In summary, the year-round support of filmmakers through the granting fund, the labs, a fellows program and strategic advice from development to distribution amounts to a commitment to documentary as an increasingly important global art form and a critical cultural practice in the 21st century.


The Documentary Fund Application is now OPEN. Click here for the application.

Please be aware of our new application restrictions. Projects will ONLY be allowed to reapply ONE time after an unsuccessful application. The reapplication will not be accepted until projects have advanced to another stage of production.

Application Apply here
Dates Year-round
Size of Grant Pool 40-60
  • US & International Filmmakers.
  • Maximum two submission attempts per project. (Sundance Documentary Film Program reserves the right to solicit projects to apply)
What Will I Need to Complete My Application?
  • Online Application Form
  • Written Proposal
  • Visual Samples
    • Completed Previous Directing Sample
    • Work-In-Progress Sample (10+ minutes for Production/Post Production)
For Additional help on preparing your materials…
Description The Sundance Documentary Fund provides grants to filmmakers worldwide for projects that display: artful film language, effective storytelling, originality and feasibility, contemporary cultural relevance, and potential to reach and connect with its intended audience. Preference is given to projects that convey clear story structure, higher stakes and contemporary relevance, forward going action or questions, demonstrated access to subjects, and quality use of film craft.
Categories of granting
  • Development (up to $20,000):There is no reel required with an application, but clips, teasers, trailers, or images are highly encouraged. A previous work sample is required.
  • Production/Post-Production (up to $40,000): Production/post-production grants provide funds to projects offering 10+ minutes of edited material for the project being proposed. The reel should convey the narrative and aesthetic approach for the final film. A previous sample work must also be included with the application.
  • Audience Engagement (up to $20,000):Audience Engagement grants provide previously granted projects funding for strategic audience and community engagement campaigns.
  • Additional Opportunities by Nomination
Read the full article at Sundance

film finance, film funding, film grants, Sundance Documentary Fund

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