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Apply For Labs, Fellowships, Grants, Programs

Apply

Apply For Labs,

Fellowships,

Grants,

Programs

Support for Independent Storytellers

“Sundance deepens the resolve of artists, bringing them together in a creative community so that they know they are not alone.” —Robert Redford, President and Founder

The Sundance Institute’s artist programs provide dynamic support at every step of the creative journey for individuals with distinct voices in film, theater, film composing, episodic storytelling, and emerging media. Each program consists of labs, grants, intensives, sessions, and ongoing resources for artists to nurture their projects and sustain their careers. Through year-round activities, we provide the space for artists to create and share their stories with the world. Since our inception, the Institute’s programs have supported more than 11,000 artists and fostered a community for independent storytellers to learn, grow, connect, and give back.

Application Deadlines

See All

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Sundance Institute | American Rescue Plan Fund in the Humanities

The Sundance Institute | Humanities Sustainability Fellowship will provide 20 direct, unrestricted stipends to supplement the income of U.S.-based underemployed nonfiction mediamakers whose work and livelihood have been grossly affected by the pandemic. Selected mediamakers working on humanities-focused projects will receive monthly stipends of $5,000 per month over the course of 12 months. Grantees will be paired with paid humanities advisors through the granting term (April 2022–March 2023), who will provide dedicated mentorship, project advice, and other tailored nonfinancial support.

We hope that by providing mediamakers with monthly stipends, we will alleviate the financial burden the pandemic has had on the creative mind leading the field in recovery from the impacts of COVID-19, and by pairing artists with humanities advisors, we will help foster community and collaboration between humanities practitioners and mediamakers. Applicants from underrepresented communities in the humanities are greatly encouraged and will be prioritized.

This fellowship is part of the American Rescue Plan: Humanities Grantmaking program, an emergency relief program intended to fund grantmaking programs that assist organizations and individuals working in the humanities who have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic and require support to restore and sustain their core activities. The funding is provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities. 

Application opens: October 15, 2021

Application closes: December 1, 2021

Decisions announced: April 2022

Fellowship runs: April 2022–March 2023

Learn more about this opportunity at an Insider Session on Collab. Find out more here.

Labs, Grants, and Fellowships

At the Institute’s core is a commitment to champion the creation of unique work by individual storytellers. Through open applications and by invitation, we offer labs, grants, intensives, mentorships with accomplished professionals, and ongoing support to advance the development, production, and completion of independent work.

We encourage artists from around the world to apply for our programs.

Documentary Film

The Documentary Film Program provides financial and creative resources to nonfiction filmmakers around the world. Through open applications, the Documentary Fund provides more than two million dollars in nonrecoupable film financing each year, and labs focused on editing and producing support both emerging and experienced makers. DFP-supported artists also receive ongoing strategic and creative support throughout the life cycle of their film.

Feature Film

The Feature Film Program embraces the discovery and development of independent filmmakers from the U.S. and around the world, encouraging a rigorous creative process with a focus on original and deeply resonant storytelling. Artists typically enter the program though the Screenwriters Lab (held annually in January) or the Screenwriters Intensive (held annually in March) through open application to the Development Track. Through this platform, eligible artists can also be considered for the Sundance Institute Comedy Fellowship, and Alfred P. Sloan Commissioning Grant and Fellowship.

Film Music

In light of the financial impact of the pandemic, Sundance Institute opted to scale back some programs and find new ways to support artists who are at the heart of our nonprofit mission. Regretfully, we are pausing the Film Music Program for the next year.

We have always celebrated exploring the unknown, and we’re looking forward to serving you—our artists, advisors/mentors, fellows, alumni, and community—as part of the newly-formed Sundance Interdisciplinary Program (along with also-paused New Frontier and Theater programs). We’ll be figuring out next steps in the Fall of 2020. A huge thank you for being a part of this community!

New Frontier

In light of the financial impact of the pandemic, Sundance Institute opted to scale back some programs and find new ways to support artists who are at the heart of our nonprofit mission. Regretfully, we are pausing the New Frontier Lab programs for the next year, and we do not plan to host a 2021 Story Lab.

We have always celebrated exploring the unknown, and we’re looking forward to serving you—our artists, advisors/mentors, fellows, alumni, and community—as part of the newly-formed Sundance Interdisciplinary Program (along with also-paused Film Music and Theatre programs). We’ll be figuring out next steps in the Fall of 2020. A huge thank you for being a part of this community!

Indigenous Program

Sundance Institute’s commitment to supporting Native American artists is woven throughout our history. From labs and fellowships to screenings and gatherings around the world, the Indigenous Program’s offerings are designed in response to the specific needs of Native and Indigenous storytellers. 

Theater

In light of the financial impact of the pandemic, Sundance Institute opted to scale back some programs and find new ways to support artists who are at the heart of our nonprofit mission. Regretfully, we are pausing the Theater Program for the next year.

We have always celebrated exploring the unknown, and we’re looking forward to serving you—our artists, advisors/mentors, fellows, alumni, and community—as part of the newly-formed Sundance Interdisciplinary Program (along with also-paused Film Music and New Frontier programs). We’ll be figuring out next steps in the Fall of 2020. A huge thank you for being a part of this community!

Producers Program

Recognizing the crucial role that independent producers play in finding, championing, and shaping original voices in filmmaking, the Producers Program supports both fiction and nonfiction producers at all stages of their feature-length projects and their careers—through a year-round continuum of support, including labs, fellowships, intensives, grants, networking events, funding, and educational resource opportunities. Through these activities, producers create community with fellow producers and industry, hone creative skills, gain knowledge of the field, and develop strategies for pitching, producing, financing, and releasing their films.

Episodic

Over the past six years, we have witnessed an explosion in the opportunities available for writers developing episodic content for cable and online platforms. We have seen audiences and critics embrace the bold vision and complex characters that are thriving in cable drama and comedy. The internet has become both a place to pilot stories for traditional media and to create entertainment content for the growing audience watching on mobile devices.

Ignite

Sundance Ignite is a program designed to inspire a new generation of audience members and film artists around the power of storytelling. The program offers individuals ages 18 to 24 the Ignite Ticket Package, an exclusive chance to see the newest films at the Sundance Film Festival and the Sundance Ignite x Adobe Fellowship Program, a competitive and year-round Festival and industry experience.

Catalyst

Each year, the invitation-only Catalyst Forum introduces prospective financiers to a slate of 10 to 12 top-notch, Sundance Institute–supported documentary and fiction projects seeking financing. Through project presentations, individually scheduled meetings, and informal social gatherings, investors interface directly with filmmakers, top advisors, and Institute program leadership.

Women At Sundance

Women at Sundance is dedicated to creating gender equity in American media and innovating ways for women to succeed as storytellers who shape our cultural landscape. We support women filmmakers to grow and sustain their careers through a yearlong fellowship program, an annual financing intensive, and community events throughout the year. We collaborate in the field to activate systemic change through ReFrame, a project that partners with Women in Film Los Angeles and industry insiders to forge gender parity at every level in film, TV, and media.

Outreach & Inclusion

Our Outreach & Inclusion Program builds upon the Institute’s commitment to support and celebrate voices from historically underrepresented communities. across all of the Institute’s artistic disciplines. Through our Knight-supported regional sessions and Intensives, the Momentum Fellowship for midcareer artists, the Launch Grant for first-time feature filmmakers, this program nurtures storytellers from historically marginalized ethnicities, abilities, genders, regions, and orientations in bespoke and customized engagement

Public Sessions

Open to all artists and held around the country, free public sessions and workshops offer participants premium resources and expert advice on topics ranging from screenwriting to digital distribution, providing opportunities for artists to be inspired in their storytelling and empowered to advance their projects to the next phase.

Sessions are offered by our Feature FilmDocumentary FilmShort Film, Creative ProducingIndigenous, and Outreach & Inclusion Programs.

See All Upcoming Sessions

Sundance Co//ab

Sundance Co//ab is a free-to-join global learning and storytelling community for creators, featuring opportunities to get advice, personalized feedback, and resources, while forging new connections with other artists. Learn, share, and connect. Join now.

Code of Conduct

All Sundance Institute programs—including our labs, intensives, and sessions—are environments where bold, creative, and distinctive voices are celebrated. Sundance Institute is committed to allowing attendees to experience these programs free of harassment, discrimination, sexism, and threatening or disrespectful behavior. We reserve the right, without notice or refund of any related costs, to limit or revoke access to our programs for those who engage in such conduct. If you are involved in or witness something that violates this code of conduct, please notify someone on our staff, and we will work swiftly and discreetly to take appropriate action. For emergencies, immediately dial 9-1-1.

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