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2019 Native Filmmaker Lab Fellowship

Since its founding, Sundance Institute has supported three generations of Native filmmakers through Labs, Grants, Fellowships and the platform of Sundance Film Festival. As the Program sought to engage the fourth generation, it launched the Native Filmmaker Lab Fellowship in 2015. This Fellowship is aimed at supporting the production of fiction short films through a Residential Lab, grants, and mentorship. The goal of this Fellowship and Lab is to provide first- or second-time directors with funding and guidance as they direct a short film.
The Program is currently seeking US-based Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian filmmakers with short film screenplays that are no longer than 15 pages to consider for this Fellowship. Projects will be reviewed and selected based on their originality of voice and vision and their likelihood of being produced within the 2019 calendar year. The Writer/Director is encouraged to have a producer attached prior to selection. The Writer/Director will be the recipient of travel and accommodations to participate in the Residential Lab, a three-stage grant contract providing funds supporting pre-production, production and post-production, and attendance at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival.
Fellows are required to acknowledge Sundance Institute and The Indigenous Program, to provide reporting at the close of the Fellowship year, and to participate in possible blogs, interviews, panels. Fellows should be willing to give back to the Sundance Institute creative community through willingness to coach, advise or mentor future Fellows from Sundance Institute. If accepted, Fellows will be required to sign a grant agreement and create a LLC for their project.  Additional fellowship requirements include:
  • Participate in a series of Google chats focusing on key themes around legal issues, budget management, and pre-production.
  • Attend Native Filmmakers Lab to be held in Santa Fe, New Mexico May 12-17, 2019.
  • Attend Sundance Film Festival 2020 in Park City, Utah. Dates TBD.
  • Maintain specific deliverable goals and accounting for funds used.
Sundance Institute will provide round trip economy travel, ground transfer and onsite lodging for the selected fellow for the specific dates of attendance.

To apply, create an account and sign in.
  • Go to the online application portal, sign up for an account or log in with an existing one.
  • Log in and “Create a New Submission.”
  • Select “2019 Native Filmmakers Lab Application.
  • Get started!