About the Sundance Institute | Luminate Fund

The Sundance Institute | Luminate Fund provides non-recoupable grants to independent artists working across documentary, narrative, episodic, and emerging media projects that address the following four areas in which Luminate strives to have impact:

Civic Empowerment
Data & Digital Rights
Independent Media
Financial Transparency

The fund offers support to projects at all stages of development, production, and post-production, including early distribution and impact campaigns. This fund supports up to six projects per year with the following average grant amounts:

  • $15,000 for development
  • $40,000 for production and post-production

Selection criteria for this fund prioritize the potential for social and cultural impact.


Filmmakers are eligible to apply to the fund if they are working on projects addressing any of the above four impact areas in any of Luminate’s priority countries: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, France, Georgia, Germany, India, Kenya, Mexico, Myanmar, Nigeria, Philippines, Poland, South Africa, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, and Zimbabwe. We especially encourage applications from Latin America.

How to Apply

Applications are accepted on an open and rolling basis and must be submitted through the Documentary Fund application portal; applicants may note their interest in being considered for this fund on the application form.


Supported Projects


Director: Sam Soko
Producers: Toni Kamau, Sam Soko
As Kenya’s most notorious activist enters mainstream politics to challenge social injustice, he faces questions on the cost of his sacrifices, past and present, from his family and himself.

The Infiltrators
Directors: Cristina Ibarra, Alex Rivera
Producers: Cristina Ibarra, Alex Rivera
The Infiltrators is a docu-thriller that tells the real—and surreal—story of a group of immigrants in America who got themselves apprehended by Border Patrol to face detention and deportation on purpose.

About Luminate

Luminate is a global philanthropic organization focused on empowering people and institutions to work together to build just and fair societies. We support innovative and courageous organizations and entrepreneurs around the world, and we advocate for the policies and actions that will drive change across four impact areas: Civic Empowerment, Data & Digital Rights, Financial Transparency, and Independent Media. We work with our investees and partners to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to participate in and to shape the issues affecting their societies, and to make those in positions of power more responsive and accountable. Luminate was established in 2018 by Pierre Omidyar, the founder of eBay, and his wife Pam. The organization is part of The Omidyar Group.

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