Sundance Institute | Documentary Fund Grant

by Sundance Film Institute
(Park City, Utah)

The Sundance Institute Documentary Fund provides support for U.S. and international documentary films that focus on current human rights issues, freedom of expression, social justice, civil liberties, and exploring critical issues of our time. More than 500 awards have supported documentary filmmakers in 61 countries globally.

The Documentary Fund was established at Sundance Institute in 2002 with a gift from the Open Society Institute and is supported by grants from the Ford Foundation and Open Society Institute, among others. The Sundance Institute Documentary Fund grants $1-2 million per year.

Sundance Institute Documentary Fund grants are announced twice a year. A committee of human rights experts and film professionals make recommendations from projects submitted by filmmakers from around the world. The Fund reviews between 1,400 and 2,000 proposals annually, choosing 35-50 for support each year. In funding such work, the Documentary Fund encourages the diverse exchange of ideas that is crucial to fostering an open society and public dialogue about contemporary issues.

The Documentary Fund provides grants to filmmakers worldwide for projects that display:

  • Artful and innovative storytelling techniques
    Global relevance

  • Contemporary social issues

  • Potential for social engagement

Learn more about The Sundance Institute Documentary Fund

The Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program (DFP)

The Sundance Documentary Fund is part of the Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program (DFP) which is dedicated to supporting contemporary-issue nonfiction filmmakers worldwide in the production of cinematic documentaries with human rights themes. In supporting such work, the DFP encourages the diverse exchange of ideas by artists as a critical pathway to developing an open society. Our year-round support activities for filmmakers amount to a celebration of documentary as an increasingly important global art form and a critical cultural practice in the 21st century.

  • Sundance Institute Documentary Fund, which grants $1-2 million per year

  • Creative Documentary Labs with seasoned Creative Advisors, held at the Sundance Resort every summer

  • Work-in-progress screenings held at museums, film festivals, and cultural institutions globally

  • Documentary filmmaker and field support at the Sundance Film Festival

  • Creative and strategic partnerships to amplify the use of film around key global challenges.

Learn more about The Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program

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