June 14, 2018

Why the Flies Collective Wants to Give You $15K for Your Film

Have a great film project that just doesn't fit into traditional funding parameters? Here's how a group of filmmakers might help you out!

The Flies Collective is a production company and storytelling collaborative, including the likes of Daniel Patrick Carbone, Matthew Petock, Zachary Zedd, and Jordan Bailey-Hoover. They make films. They are also offering a grant for the second year in a row so you can make films, too.

"Like most filmmakers, we split our time between our passion projects and the work that pays the bills," Flies Collective told No Film School. "We’ve been fortunate in both areas and collectively realized a while back that we wanted to do more to support the work of other independent filmmakers. We thought financially supporting projects in need was the most direct way we could have a tangible impact on filmmakers we believe in. So many people have helped us over the past decade, from sage advice, to donated meals, to crew members working for no pay — looking back, it’s pretty amazing how much of a family our little filmmaking community is. We wanted to do our part to help foster the work of others in the family."

If you're a filmmaker who has a creative, unique project that just hasn't been able to get off the ground yet or find conventional funding elsewhere, this could be a huge opportunity. Here is an overview of the Flies Collective Film Grant:

  • The Film Grant is oriented towards creative projects of any kind, with a preference for low budgets and reasonable production goals
  • Established and new voices are eligible to apply
  • The cash amount $15,000 - either to one project or divided between several projects
  • Other Perks include use of an equipment package to eligible films
  • You'll eventually need a fiscal sponsor to accept the grant
  • The deadline is June 30, with notification by the end of July if Flies Collective want to learn more about your project

Does this mean any film, short, feature, narrative, documentary, animation, experimental, can apply? Yes! The grant is specifically for "talented and promising filmmakers with bold visions" but doesn't require a specific style, genre, or format.

"There are so many grants out there and when we set out to start ours, we asked ourselves what would make our grant stand out from all of the others," said Flies Collective to No Film School. "We realized we wanted to celebrate all forms of filmmaking—from stories that explore difficult and timely subjects, to formalist cinema and also more experimental works from artists who typically get a little less attention. We ultimately decided that the most radical thing we could do was to keep the grant open to every sort of project and every filmmaker out there."

"We ultimately decided that the most radical thing we could do was to keep the grant open to every sort of project and every filmmaker out there."

The application for the grant consists of questions about your project, including what it's about and the budget, as well as short written responses. Wondering what you need to do to stand out to Flies Collective in the application process? We asked, and they said it comes down to having an artful approach, a well-thought out shooting plan, and a small budget.

"One of our priorities is awarding projects that will be most impacted by the grant funds," replied Flies Collective. "If there’s a smaller micro-budget project that we love and a bigger budget film that has 90% of their funding and are just trying to pay for a color session or something, all other things being equal, we’d be more likely to offer support to the smaller project. Other criteria we’re looking for are an artful approach to form, stories from new, unique perspectives, and projects that would otherwise not be great candidates for other grants. Finally, we really pay attention to is how real or tangible the project seems. If the filmmaker includes information about their key crew members, their schedule, talent involved, location photos or references, strategy for additional fundraising and strategy for audience engagement, those kinds of things give us more confidence in the project and team behind it."

If you think your storytellling would fit in and benefit from the Flies Collective Film Grant, the deadline is June 30th! Fill out the grant application here. And best of luck!      

The featured header image is a still from 2017 Flies Collective Film Grant recipient 'Nettles' directed by Raven Jackson. 

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