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Documentary Fund Program

Welcome to the application for the Sundance Institute Documentary Fund.

We appreciate your time and effort toward the application process, and salute you on your independent filmmaking journey.

Filmmakers globally asked us to be more flexible and responsive in how we fund. So, we are operating on a Rolling Open Call. While this will not increase the number of films we can support, we aim to respond to applicants more flexibly throughout the year to award grants on a rolling basis.

We encourage you to submit your film at the point when you feel your project is ready to share, rather than rushing to submit before you are ready because of a fixed deadline.  Therefore, going forward, filmmakers will be restricted to two application attempts total per project. This restriction will not apply retroactively. Hint: Submit your film only when you have written or visual material that demonstrates your creative and storytelling intentions.

The Documentary Film Program (DFP) has evolved its mandate to focus on the values of Art, Reach, and Change. We accomplish these by encouraging experimentation and excellence in form, championing under-represented voices, and supporting the social and creative impact of this work upon release. Recently supported films include CitizenFour, Hooligan SparrowWhose Streets?, Casting JonBenet, Cameraperson, and I Am Not Your Negro.
 
WHAT WILL I NEED IN ORDER TO APPLY?
  • Written Proposal
  • Audience Engagement applications ONLY:
  • Visual Samples
    • Completed Previous Directing Sample (any length or genre)
    • Current Sample/Rough Cut (Required for Production/Post Production)
  • Demographic Form

 START YOUR ONLINE APPLICATION


WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I APPLY?
Standard decisions take 2-6 months. Applicants will be notified on a rolling basis. Please do not contact the office to request status updates, if you have not heard from us your project is still under consideration.  

Per our new application procedures, we will NOT accept written or visual updates of any kind.  Updates will not be processed and will not be considered in the evaluation of your project.  Due to the high volume of applications, we do not provide any feedback on individual project proposals.

WHAT IF I HAVE QUESTIONS OR PROBLEMS?
If you have additional questions about the Documentary Fund application procedures, please see  the Sundance Doc Fund FAQ  and Helpful Hints links at the top of the page. For technical issues related to the application please contact FRsupport@sundance.org.