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Strike While The Iron Is Hot
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Is all money created equal? When is the right (and wrong) time to apply for grant funding? How do investors work? Join us for an informal fireside chat about film financing with Tribeca Film Institute’s former Director of Scripted Programs Bryce Norbitz and filmmaker Dyana Winkler where no question is off limits as we look honestly at how savvy filmmakers have to be in order to get our films funded and made. Moderated by Film Fatales member Sharmila Ray.

Bryce currently serves as the Program Director for the Athena Screenwriting Lab and the Director of Stowe Launch, an Advanced Development Program for Stowe Story Labs. She is the former Director of Scripted Programs at Tribeca Film Institute. Dyana spent the first half of her career working inside funding organizations including the Sundance Documentary Film Program and Tribeca Film Institute where she learned who gets money, what gets into festivals and why. Her films have gone on to receive funding and support from Sundance, IFP, Film Independent, Chicken and Egg, Fledgling Foundation, New York State Council for the Arts (NYSCA), California Humanities, Threshold Foundation, Doc Society (formerly Brit Doc), Women in Film, the Sloan Foundation and many others.

Recommended Reading

A Child's Quest written by Fabian Garcia

Challenges Facing Independent Filmmakers written by Elliot Grove
How to Build Values-Based Documentary Funding Strategies written by Rounak Maiti
How the ‘United Skates’ Directors Made the Film Everyone Said Was Impossible written by Liz Nord
One of 2019’s Most Exciting HBO Documentary Debuts written by Mary Alice Miller
Massive List of Spring 2021 Grants All Filmmakers Should Know About written by Oakley Anderson-Moore

Meet Sharmila Ray of Saywhatfoo Films in Echo Park written by VoyageLA

New-look North Fork TV Festival wants to turn your idea into a hit show written by Sarah Austin

The Ultimate Film Grants List for Every Filmmaker in 2021 written by Herman Wilkins

Tips for Successfully Producing a Micro-Budget Feature written by Jennifer Westin
United Skates Review: A Rallying Cry for Black Roller Skating Culture written by Teo Bugbee
Documentary Producers Alliance Unveils Guidelines for the Documentary Waterfall written by Marilyn Ness

Additional Resources

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

Athena Screenwriting Labs

Catapult Film Fund

Chicken and Egg Pictures 

Creative Capital Awards

Doc Society 

Documentary Grants Directory

Film Independent Grants and Awards

Filmmakers Without Borders

Frameline Completion Fund

Future of Film is Female

IDA Documentary Grants Directory

Jerome Foundation

Lynn Shelton Grant

North Fork Film Fund


Sundance Co//ab

Still I Rise Fellowship

Stowe Story Labs

Sundance Resources

The Fledgling Fund

The Gotham

Threshold Foundation

Through Her Lens

Tribeca Film Institute

Untold Stories

Women In Film

Women Make Movies Grants Directory

On the Front Lines
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Join Film Fatales for a discussion about filming in conflict zones with documentary filmmakers Amber Fares (Speed Sisters), Elizabeth Mirzaei (3 Songs for Benazir), and Sedika Mojadidi (Facing the Dragon) as they share advice on the strategies, logistics and hazards of filming in daunting locations. How do they make authentic films that resonate with the wider world? What is it like to work in a conflict zone, both technically and emotionally? How do they keep their stories intimate and their subjects safe? How can films shift culture and create tangible and lasting change?

Recommended Reading

Afghan Female Directors Fear the End of Filmmaking Under Taliban: ‘They Can Easily Find Us, Kill Us, Get Rid of Us’ written by Rebecca Davis

Afghan Film Progress Obliterated By Taliban Takeover written by Hollie McKay

Amber Fares of Speed Sisters written by Yasmina Tawil

Cannes-Winning Afghan Director Trying to Escape Kabul: “If I Survive This, I Will Make Films About What Happened” written by Alex Ritman

Director Q&A: Elizabeth and Gulistan Mirzaei of 'Laila at the Bridge' written by A.T. Callaghan

How Sedika Mojadidi made her "immersive and intimate" doc about Afghan women written by Gary M. Kramer

Save Documentary Translator from Taliban Execution - An Urgent Call to Action written by James Longley

Shooting Amidst the Shooting: Doc-Making in War Zones written by Suz Curtis

‘Speed Sisters,’ Revving to Go in the West Bank written by Jeannette Catsoulis

The Afghanistan We Know and Fight For: Filmmakers Share Shards of Memories written by Elizabeth and Gulistan Mirzaei

Women’s Education Before, During, and After the Taliban Regime written by Shagufa Habibi

Additional Resources

Artistic Freedom Initiative

Artists at Risk

Arts for Afghanistan

Art With Impact

Beyond Inclusion

Brown Girls Doc Mafia

CAAM Documentary Fund

Catapult Research Grant

City of Asylum

CrossCurrents International Doc Fund

The D-Word

Documentary Film Grants

Doha Film Institute

Film Independent Docuseries Intensive



Girl Rising

IDFA Bertha Fund

IDA Enterprise Documentary Fund

Impact Partners Development Fund

International Cities of Refuge Network

International Documentary Association

International Refugee Assistance Project

ITVS Diversity Development Fund

IWMF Journalism Emergency Fund

New Day Films

No One Left Behind

NYC Women's Fund for Media

One World Media Fellowship

Operation Flyaway

Pare Lorentz Documentary Fund

Public Media For All

RJI Institutional Fellowship

Still I Rise 

Sundance Documentary Film Institute


Whose Story Mixer
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Members of Film Fatales and A-Doc participated in a networking mixer for filmmakers of all backgrounds, led by Film Fatales and A-Doc members Eunice Lau and Theresa Loong.

Recommended Reading

'A complete erasure': Asian, Pacific Islanders face stunning lack of representation in Hollywood written by David Oliver

‘Crazy Rich Asians’ director Jon M. Chu on Asian representation in Hollywood written by Sarah Whitten

"Decolonize" the Documentary? written by Nadia Gill

Decolonizing Documentaries in South Asia written by Rounak Maiti

The Documentary Future: A Call for Accountability written by Sonya Childress and Natalie Bullock Brown

How Film Fatales are Tackling Hollywood's Inclusion Problem written by Melissa Silverstein

Practicing What You Preach: Examples of Accountable Documentary Filmmaking written by Yi Chen

The Documentary Future: A Call for Accountability written by Sonya Childress & Natalie Bullock Brown

We Need Documentarians of Color to Tell Their Own Stories written by Miasarah Lai

Who Is Telling Whose Story, To Whom, and Why? written byLisa Valencia-Svensson

Whose Story? Five Doc-Makers on (Avoiding) Extractive Filmmaking written by Lauren Wissot

Additional Resources


Allies in Arts

Array Crew

Asian CineVision

Brooklyn Film Collective

Brown Girls Doc Mafia

Center for Asian American Media


Film Shop

Free The Work

GLAAD Media Reference Guide

Glass Elevator

Girls in Film

Inclusion Films

International Documentary Association

Kaur Films

Milestone Films

New Day Films

The Kindertransport Association 

Transgender Film Center

Women in Media Crew List

Love Is Love
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Join us for a discussion about Queer Love Stories with Film Fatales members Marion Hill (Ma Belle, My Beauty), Mari Walker (See You Then) and Natalia Leite (Bare).

The Queer Cinema movement has been politically and aesthetically innovative, growing to include an entire generation of queer artists, filmmakers, and activists. What does this look like in today’s landscape? How has onscreen representation evolved alongside our understanding of gender? How does identity intersect with art? Is there such a thing as a “Queer Aesthetic”? Filmmakers telling stories of unconventional queer romances discuss their films, their creative process and various gazes.

Recommended Reading

In Your Words
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Join us for a discussion about Writing for Television with C.A. Johnson (Filthy Rich), Dr. David Renaud (The Good Doctor), and Marilyn Fu (The Baxters). Moderated by Film Fatales member Jenna Laurenzo (Lez Bomb).

This round table conversation with episodic television writers will explore their creative process and how they are making waves in the industry. Where did they find their style and how do they maintain it? What are the challenges to breaking into television?  What happens day to day in a writer's room? How can we uplift marginalized voices so there are more seats at the table? Where do we go from here?

Recommended Reading

Additional Resources

Language of Light
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Join us for a discussion about the Language of Light with cinematographers Nancy Schreiber (P-Valley), Rose Bush (Colette), and Vatsala Goel (Aggie). Moderated by Film Fatales member Chithra Jeyaram (Foreign Puzzle).

Come hear from working cinematographers who are forging a path with their uniquely creative visions. Learn where they find inspiration, how they cultivate their style, and how they maintain it in the fast-paced and ever-changing landscape of the film industry. Do bold choices help you stand out or are they something you have to fight to hold onto? How do you maintain your artistic integrity? How do cinematographers like to communicate with directors?

Recommended Reading

Additional Resources