We do consider both first-time and accomplished filmmakers. However bear in mind our selection criteria includes strength of proposal. Your experience will be a factor in our evaluation.
Yes, we accept International productions as long as the film is either in English or includes English subtitles. The project must have global audience appeal, extending beyond the film’s location. If you are based internationally and do not have IRS 501(c) (3) status, you will need to work with a Fiscal Sponsor who does. We will only consider submissions which are written in English.
A Fiscal Sponsor is an organization that qualifies as an IRS public charity 501 (c) (3) and can accept funds on your behalf. The funds are then re-distributed to your project, thus ensuring a tax-efficient transaction for the Film Fund. You may submit your film without 501(c) (3) status and without a Fiscal Sponsor. However you will need one should your application be accepted.
Submit your film only when you have written or visual material that demonstrates your storytelling intent. You may submit at any stage from advanced development through post-production. All proposals must convey a vision for a finished film. Projects that have not yet secured characters or subjects, are unable to articulate a story structure, or unable to explain the story’s driving central question are discouraged.
No. We only review complete proposals submitted through our Submittable platform.
We look for powerful stories with character-driven storytelling, a fact-based exposé or an informational point-of-view upon a controversial subject. We look for quality filmmaking comprised of inspiring characters, a fascinating story, a strong visual style, tight editing and generally high production values. We’re looking for a collective story that may be told through individuals, not stories primarily about individuals. We like investigations into the cost structures of our social institutions, such as healthcare and education. We appreciate the celebration of public heroes and find inspiration through their stories. We favour topics that bring our global community together.
Yes we do consider animated films for awards.
No. It is free to apply.
You may re-apply if your first application is denied. However we will only accept two submissions per project.
You can re-submit your application during any Open Call period.
If a decision is still pending and you have more information that would make a material difference to our evaluation, you are welcome to send us the update and we will do our best to incorporate that information into our evaluation process.
Your logline should be a brief (1-2 sentences) summary of your film. It should state the central conflict, a synopsis of the plot, and an emotional hook. A good logline should provoke the viewer’s curiosity. (For more tips, here’s a great article on crafting loglines.)
No. We will inform you of our decision within three months of your submission. If you have a query regarding your current application, please use the applicant login to access your submission status.
Yes. We want to best match the grant to your requirements.
No. The Miller / Packan Fund is only set up to assist with the production of a project. If your project is completed, we would hope you can repay debt or handle unpaid bills from distribution arrangements or other sources of funding.
No we do not fund outreach or audience engagement activities. Nor do we fund expenses related to fund-raising, distribution, publicity or marketing.
Do not wait until the last minute to submit your project — you will get more attention if you apply earlier. Avoid the last minute rush, get a better ‘read’ — Approximately 40% of our Open Call applications are submitted on the last day.
Submissions are accepted on a rolling basis. The Summer Open Call has now closed. To be considered for the Winter Awards, please submit your application by 23:59 EST on November 15th 2020. If you fail to meet the deadline, please apply before May 15th 2021 to be considered for the next awards in June 2021.
The awards are announced bi-annually, in June and January.
No, we do not accept materials sent by mail. All submission material must be sent via our online application system.
Once you submit your application on our Submittable platform you will receive a confirmation email. If we have follow-up questions or need more information or materials we will contact you.
Yes, you can submit more than one proposal in the same round as long as they are for separate projects.
The only fair way to evaluate these proposals is to use a structured proposal checklist, which is what most other funds also require. This is designed to encompass the key issues involving your film’s request: how it meets the mission of the fund; how it will be financed; what its audience engagement plans are; who the key filmmakers are; what the film is about; and a short sample of footage. Our submission process is similar to that used by other funds, so your effort can be reused when making other applications.
You may contact us if you have a specific question regarding our fund. Please do not contact us with general questions regarding the suitability of your project. We ask you to go through the application process.
No. Unfortunately, we are unable to respond to inquiries via telephone or Skype. If you have read our FAQ and you still have specific questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will try to answer them.