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Special Funding Opportunities

Special Opportunity Funds include: Cinereach support for global cultural exchange; John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation support for diverse U.S-based documentarians; and the Wallace Global Fund, for environmentally themed films. Sundance Institute Documentary Awards were launched in 2012 providing additional direct grants as an extension of DFP artist support. They include: Hilton Hotels Worldwide LightStay Sustainability Awards, Candescent Films Award, Time Warner Fellowship, and Sundance/Worldview Award. Special Opportunity Funds are granted through a nomination and review process--there is no separate application. The Sundance Documentary Fund was established at Sundance Institute in 2002 with a gift from the Open Society Institute and is supported by leadership grants from the Ford Foundation, Open Society Foundations and Skoll Foundation, among others.

The Cinereach Project @ Sundance Institute
The Cinereach Project at Sundance Institute supports documentary and narrative feature film projects with themes that evoke global cultural exchange and social impact by providing a flexible and rapidly deployable resource pool at key stages in the life of projects, from development through release. In addition to grant awards, selected artists receive creative support at a Sundance Institute Lab, the Sundance Institute Creative Producing Summit, or the Sundance Film Festival. For a list of films that received support through The Cinereach Project at Sundance Institute, please click here.

About Cinereach
Cinereach is a not-for-profit film production company and foundation that champions vital stories that are artfully told. Created and led by young philanthropists, entrepreneurs, and filmmakers, Cinereach empowers fiction and nonfiction filmmakers from all over the world through Grants & Awards, The Reach Film Fellowship, an internal Productions department, and through partnerships with Sundance Institute and other organizations. Since 2006, Cinereach has disbursed more than $4.5 million in grant funds to more than 90 projects at the intersection of engaging storytelling, visual artistry, and vital subject matter. For information on grants given directly by Cinereach, please visit their website.

MacArthur Foundation @ Sundance
Raising the bar for the support of diversity in the field of documentary film, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation partnership with the Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program and Fund is an essential tool for identifying talented artists from diverse backgrounds in the U.S.

Through this partnership, artists from diverse backgrounds who are telling smart stories of human journeys in a conflict ridden world are identified. Together, they represent a broader, more inclusive, and therefore more authentic storytelling culture of contemporary life in the United States. In addition to the grant, selected artists are eligible to enjoy additional support in the form of Sundance Creative Documentary Labs, Creative Producing Summit, or Festival Fellows programmatic support, reflecting Sundance Institute’s own institutional commitment to these artists and the projects selected. For a list of films that received support through the MacArthur Foundation partnership please click here.

About MacArthur Foundation
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation supports creative people and effective institutions committed to building a more just, verdant, and peaceful world. In addition to selecting the MacArthur Fellows, the Foundation works to defend human rights, advance global conservation and security, make cities better places, and understand how technology is affecting children and society.

MacArthur is one of the nation's largest independent foundations. Through the support it provides, the Foundation fosters the development of knowledge, nurtures individual creativity, strengthens institutions, helps improve public policy, and provides information to the public, primarily through support for public interest media. For information on the Foundation and their work please visit their website.

Wallace Global Fund @ Sundance Institute
The Wallace Global Fund initiative at the Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program and Fund aims to support contemporary issue documentary films with environmentally conscious themes. Documentary filmmakers from around the world telling stories evoking the global fight for the environment, to protect natural resources, and to preserve the balance of nature are eligible for a Wallace Global Fund @ Sundance Institute grant as well as the additional artist support activities that the DFP offers. For a list of films that received support through Wallace Global Fund initiative, please click here.

About Wallace Global Fund
The Wallace Global Fund aims to promote an informed and engaged citizenry, to fight injustice, and to protect the diversity of nature and the natural systems upon which all life depends.

The Fund seeks to further its mission generally through systemic change as well as fundamental public policy shifts. The Fund strongly believes in access to information for furthering democratic participation and in supporting bold, new, progressive ideas. To learn more about the Fund, please visit their website.