With digital recording equipment often coming standard on cell phones and digital cameras, an increasing number of young people have access to the tools needed to try their hand at filmmaking. Filmmaking costs also are going down, as personal editing software is increasingly standard on laptops and personal computers. Grants to support a growing tide of young filmmakers are offered by filmmaker organisations, by non-profit aiming to spur youth use of video as a tool for social commentary and social change, and by foundations recognising the value of documentary film for advancing rights and freedoms. Searching for citizen journalism grant monies is another helpful way to learn about accessing funds as a young filmmaker.
Yearly Young Filmmaker Grants from Alter-Ciné Foundation
These grants encourage young filmmakers and video makers from Africa, Asia and Latin America to direct documentary films with the theme of rights and freedoms “including social and economic rights, women’s rights, and the right to culture and artistic creation.” In particular, the foundation aims to provide support to documentary films that “dare to go against the tide, give a voice to the voiceless, and enrich our understanding of the world.” A grant of £6,500 Canadian dollars is generally awarded each year. To apply, the filmmaker must complete an application form available from the Alter-Ciné Documentary Film Grants page, send a VHS cassette or DVD of a completed documentary work, submit a production budget and two letters from partners, NGO groups, or associations supporting the project.
5371 avenue de l’Esplanade
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Kodak Film Student Scholarships
The program awards scholarships to students who demonstrate superior professional filmmaking production skills and creativity. Colleges and universities in the United States, Canada and participating countries in Asia Pacific, Europe and Latin America offering a degree or diploma program in film, film production or cinematography may nominate up to two students per year for consideration. Submissions must include an application form and completed works that communicate a story or theme.
Kodak Scholarship Program
343 State Street
Rochester, NY 14650
Student Academy Awards Grants for Film Students
An annual national competition for university filmmakers began in 1972, winners of the Student Academy Awards receive cash prices in addition to trophies. Entrants may compete in four categories: Animation, Documentary, Narrative and Alternative. Past winners, as of 2010, have gone on to receive 40 Oscar nominations and have won or shared seven awards.
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
8949 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA 90211
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