Octavia Spencer stars in TV Series as “Madam C.J. Walker”, one of the first American women to become a self-made millionaire

Variety reports Oscar-winning actress, producer and author Octavia Spencer is set to play entrepreneur and activist Madam C.J. Walker (1867–1919) in a new TV Series based on the critically-acclaimed, best-selling biography “On Her Own Ground” by A’Lelia Bundles, Walker’s granddaughter. Madam C.J. Walker suffered from a scalp condition that made her lose her hair, which was the impetus for her to invent a successful line of hair care products, and is ultimately what led her in 1905 to become one of the first female self-made millionaires in America. The series is being produced by SpringHill Entertainment, the production company of NBA star LeBron James, whose mission is to spotlight the hidden African-American figures who helped shape American history.

The Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund – Apply now

The Hot Docs-Blue Ice Group Documentary Fund will provide successful applicants with a development grant of up to $10,000 CDN which could reflect up to 100 per cent of the development budget. Grant money must be spent in the region on development activities and pre-production. Eligible costs include research, development of a script and story proposal and production of a teaser or trailer. Other eligible costs may include production of pitch and marketing materials, community engagement strategy research, as well as distribution strategy research.  Application deadline: August 18, 2017. Apply now: http://www.hotdocs.ca/i/hd-big-fund-how-to-apply#

 

Looking for funding for your film? The Women’s Film Institute has compiled a comprehensive list of funding opportunities. When you make a gift in any amount today, you will receive the complete list of 200+ funding opportunities in your inbox.

The 2017 Pare Lorentz Documentary Fund – Deadline: July 31

The Pare Lorentz Documentary Fund supports full-length documentary films that reflect the spirit and nature of Pare Lorentz’s work, exhibiting objective research, artful storytelling, strong visual style, high production values, artistic writing, and outstanding music composition, as well as skillful direction, camerawork, and editing. A program of the International Documentary Association, the Pare Lorentz Documentary Fund is made possible by The New York Community Trust. Deadline: July 31, 2017. More information: http://www.documentary.org/pare-lorentz-doc-fund#

Looking for funding for your film? The Women’s Film Institute has compiled a comprehensive list of funding opportunities. When you make a gift in any amount today, you will receive the complete list of 200+ funding opportunities in your inbox.

ITVS open call to help you finish your film & distribute it on public television

ITVS  is looking for exceptional storytelling that’s in line with their mission: stories that take risks, tackle important issues, and are seldom seen in public media. They’ll partner with you to help you finish your film, then distribute it on public television.

As part of your application, you’ll submit a work in progress video from your production. For pre-production projects, see Diversity Development Fund or Digital Open Call. On average, Open Call applicants spend 1-2 weeks completing their applications. One to three percent of Open Call applicants receive funding. Amounts average between $150,000 and $350,000.

Open Call is not a grant. ITVS provides a co-production investment in your project.  Open until July 28, 2017 11:59 PM PDT. Apply today: https://itvs.org/funding/open-call

Looking for funding for your film? The Women’s Film Institute has compiled a comprehensive list of funding opportunities. When you make a gift in any amount today, you will receive the complete list of 200+ funding opportunities in your inbox.

The Roy W. Dean Grant for Summer 2017 is now open for entries

The Roy W. Dean Grant for Summer 2017 is now open for entries.  Now celebrating its 25th year, the grant seeks independent film projects that are unique and contribute to society.  It is open to documentaries, short films, features, and web series.  Deadline for entering the grant is June 30th, 2017.

Founded in 1993 by film funding non-profit From the Heart Productions, the Roy W. Dean Grant winner receives $30K in cash film related products, and services to help them complete their film. This includes $3,500 donated by From the Heart, a hard drive from G-Technology, $600.00 for your Free Closed Captioning by NetCaptioning, $1,000 expert post-production consultation for both film and tape projects from colorist Sam Dlugach.

Unique about the grant is that each applicant is able to discuss their film project with a staff or board member of From the Heart.  They can get advice on funding, story, distribution or whatever they’d like to discuss. Consultations can be reserved after grant has closed. To apply to the grant, go to http://fromtheheartproductions.com/roy-w-dean-grant-form-summer/

Looking for funding for your film? The Women’s Film Institute has compiled a comprehensive list of funding opportunities. When you make a gift in any amount today, you will receive the complete list of 200+ funding opportunities in your inbox.

Acclaimed Script Consultant Kathie Fong Yoneda talks about how she made the leap from Secretary to Studio Reader in Hollywood

In this podcast episode, Kathie Fong Yoneda talks about the power of networking and how building relationships with key influencers helped her rise from secretary to studio reader. She has over thirty years of experience working in film and television. She was the first Asian female hired on a full-time basis at Universal back in 1969. She has worked for such prestigious studios as Paramount, 20th Century Fox, and Disney, focusing on analysis and development of live action/animated film, television, novels and web series projects. She is the author of The Script-Selling Game: A Hollywood Insider’s Look At Getting Your Script Sold and Produced.

Kathie will be at ScriptFest and the Great American PitchFest held from June 23 – 25, 2017 in Los Angeles.  You can meet her and sign up for a private, half hour consultation at ScriptFest. She will help you fine-tune your pitch, script, and offer career advice. Private consultations will be scheduled on a first come/first served basis so book early to secure your spot.  Click here to purchase your session.

Opportunities are often found in the form of screenwriting competitions, where budding writers compete to win cash prizes, as well as making a name for themselves. Which screenplay contests should you enter in 2017? Kathie shares her personal list of screenwriting contests and fellowship programs worth entering. OPPORTUNITIES FOR WRITERS IN TV

Women’s Film Institute is proud to be a community partner at this year’s www.scriptfest.com

Derek Freese Documentary Fund provides up to $35,000 in finishing funds

Derek Freese Documentary Fund (DFDF) provides production support for feature-length documentary films that have both a strong narrative and compelling story, across a broad spectrum of subject matters. This award is given biennially (every other year) to an independent filmmaker and provides up to $35,000 in finishing funds. Deadline: June 12, 2017. More info: http://www.derekfreesefilm.org/fund.html

 

Looking for funding for your film? The Women’s Film Institute has compiled a comprehensive list of funding opportunities. When you make a gift in any amount today, you will receive the complete list of 200+ funding opportunities in your inbox.

Project Involve 2018 (Non-Member Deadline: June 12, 2017)

Project Involve is a free, intensive, nine-month annual program that offers 30 up-and-coming film professionals from under-represented communities the opportunity to hone skills, form creative partnerships, utilize free or low-cost production resources and ultimately gain the industry access necessary to succeed as working artists.

Running from October through June, the Lab is comprised of:

  • Mentoring: Each Fellow is paired with a notable professional in the same field, e.g. screenwriters with screenwriters. Mentors share knowledge, contacts and experience, giving young filmmakers invaluable guidance.
  • Masters Workshops: Ten Masters Workshops with top professionals offer insights and information on the art and business of filmmaking.
  • Short Film Production: Fellows are given the resources and opportunity to gain hands-on practical experience. Fellows team up to produce at least six 10-minute shorts during the program, which are screened at the LA Film Festival.
  • Educational and Networking Events: Opportunities to learn from and connect with working artists and key professionals include the LA Film Festival and the Film Independent Forum, an annual event that brings together roughly 80 filmmakers and executives for a series of enlightening panel discussions.

Past Industry Mentors include Nina Yang Bongiovi (Fruitvale Station, Dope); Ava DuVernay (Selma); Catherine Hardwicke (Twilight); Derek Cianfrance (Blue Valentine, The Place Beyond the Pines); Destin Daniel Cretton (Short Term 12); Dan Gilroy (Nightcrawler, The Bourne Legacy); Simon Kinberg (X-Men: Apocalypse, Fantastic Four); Reed Morano, ASC (Meadowland, Vinyl); Alexander Payne (Sideways, The Descendants); Rodrigo Prieto (The Wolf of Wall Street); Justin Simien (Dear White People); Christine Vachon (Carol, Boys Don’t Cry) and Bradford Young, ASC (A Most Violent Year, Selma).  For more information on the application deadline please visit our applications page.

 

Looking for funding for your film? The Women’s Film Institute has compiled a comprehensive list of funding opportunities. When you make a gift in any amount today, you will receive the complete list of 200+ funding opportunities in your inbox.

Podcast: Susan Silver, Author, Hot Pants in Hollywood: Sex, Secrets and Sitcoms

In this podcast episode, Scarlett Shepard (Founder of the Women’s Film Institute) speaks with trailblazer Susan Silver and comedy writer for The Mary Tyler Moore Show. Susan talks about her latest memoir, Hot Pants in Hollywood: Sex, Secrets, and Sitcoms. Susan  has written for some of the most iconic sitcoms of all time, creating laugh lines for Mary Tyler Moore, Sarah Jessica Parker, Beatrice Arthur, Bob Newhart, and The Partridge Family. A female comedy writer in an industry overwhelmingly dominated by men, she is perhaps the first and only television writer to be featured in TV Guide wearing hot pants. Now, Susan dishes about the highs and lows of both her comedy career and love life in her new memoir, Hot Pants in Hollywood: Sex, Secrets and Sitcoms. Sign up for FREE chapter here.

ScriptFest and the Great American PitchFest (June 23 – 25, 2017)

ScriptFest and the Great American PitchFest return for the 14th exciting year, June 23 – 25, 2017 at the Marriott Burbank Hotel & Convention Center in LA, with more options than ever:

FULL DAY WORKSHOPS & MASTER CLASSES: Screenwriting Consultants, Pilar Alessandra and Carole Kirschner offer a team-teaching intensive to help whip your TV series into shape.  You can also attend a full day with the SUPER STORIES guys, Houston Howard and Steve Mitchell, where you will learn the same lessons they usually only teach at the studios about developing your concepts to successfully create story empires.

PITCHING: Pitch to more than 120 companies, such as the Paradigm Talent Agency, Cross Creek Pictures (BLACK SWAN, PRIDE & PREJUDICE & ZOMBIES), Echo Lake Entertainment (AWAY FROM HER, NEBRASKA), Radar Pictures (MR. HOLLAND’S OPUS, COCKTAIL, THREE MEN AND A BABY), Ramo Law (BONE TOMAHAWK), End Game Entertainment (LOOPER), Garlin Pictures (DRUNK HISTORY for HBO), Longitude Entertainment (YOUTH IN REVOLT), Rat Pac Entertainment (THE REVENANT), Circle Of Confusion (THE WALKING DEAD, STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON, THE GREAT WALL, JOHN WICK 2), and dozens more.  Scroll down to check out the latest list of companies and agencies at http://scriptfest.com/home/the-great-american-pitchfest/.  Only 500 tickets are sold and the event sells out every year.

AGENT, MANAGER & INDUSTRY LUNCHEON: At this three course luncheon, writers are seated directly with agents, managers, staff writers, produced screenwriters, distributors, and other industry professionals to offer advice, and to network with new writing talent.

CLASSES & PANELS: Produced screenwriters, gurus, and other experts give you all the knowledge you need to kickstart your writing and screenwriting career.  Previous special guests have included Oscar and Emmy award winning screenwriters such as Diablo Cody (JUNO), David Seidler (THE KING’S SPEECH), David Gould (BREAKING BAD) and the writing staff from BETTER CALL SAUL, as well as writers such as Nia Vardalos (MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING), Shane Black (NICE GUYS, LETHAL WEAPON), Simon Kinberg (MR & MRS SMITH, SHERLOCK HOLMES), Carl Gottlieb (JAWS), Gary Goldstein (Producer, PRETTY WOMAN), and dozens of other A-list screenwriters, agents, managers and industry professionals.

For 10% Discount, use Discount Code: WRITERJUDY10

Visit www.scriptfest.com for details.