Process you should go through
- Research (reading article, talking to experts, watching films)
- Raise money from the people you know who will care most about this – CALL AND TALK TO THEM
- Seed money; learn what people care about in regards to your topic & what questions they’ll ask; you’ll find the holes in your knowledge and plan
- Shoot some footage; lockdown access to your story; create fundraising video
- Crowdfunding campaign
- Go to website for the International Documentary Association (documentary.org)
- Documentary Core Application – standardized application
- Sample budget form – 3 different levels
- Grants directory
- Also lots of videos and webinars (grant writing next tuesday March 30th 2021)
- Sundance Collab
Logline: brief catchy summary, 2-3 sentences
- Who, what, when, where
Story Summary: synopsis + treatment
Synopsis: expand on your characters and story, short paragraph – elaborating from logline; 1st paragraph of the Story Summary
- Leads into story summary/treatment (but more digestible than treatment)
- What is the topic
- Who is the main character or characters?
- What activity will that character be doing and during what time period
- What questions are you, the filmmaker, exploring and in what style
- Use good ACTION verbs (struggling, probing, confronting, piece together)
Treatment: detail of story arcs, characters, structure, and access. 1-2 pages
- Expand on the brief synopsis, giving more detail about main character(s), topic, context, and the storyline
- Lay out the actual story line
Topic summary: explain why this topic is important; expand on the themes, questions, and stakes, 1-2 pages (thesis statement about greater context)
Artistic approach: describe your creative vision; ½ page (verite, interviews, etc)
Impact Statement: Look at the website for that organization and use their exact wording. Then give details for what you will use the money for – they want to make sure the money will be used to move the project forward, not stagnate.
- Ask mentors (not your biggest fan) to read and give feedback; ask friends who are in marketing or lawyers
- Yes, you need a video. Even if it is totally archival and stock footage, find a way to visually portray your concept for the film.
- Create a spreadsheet!!!
- Apply multiple times, talk about when you applied before and what has progressed