The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation has announced grants totaling $5.7 million to organizations working to support professional media makers from diverse backgrounds.
A total of $2.25 million over three years will be regranted to independent film projects, with the remaining funds aside for fellowships, workshops, training programs, and professional development activities. The grants include support for interactive and feature documentary projects through the Sundance Documentary Fund's New Frontier and Native programs; in support of African American filmmakers experimenting with non-linear digital storytelling through Black Public Media's 360 Incubator + Lab; to provide a new stream of funds for filmmakers in the U.S. South through the Southern Documentary Fund; and, through the Docs in Action project at Working Films, to equip social movements with nonfiction short films created by filmmakers representing and accountable to vulnerable communities.
Recipients of grants ranging from $450,000 to $1.25 million include the Bay Area Video Coalition ($900,000) for its National MediaMaker Fellowship Program; the Center for Asian American Media ($600,000) in support of its Future Fund; and Latino Public Broadcasting ($450,000), which will use the funds to launch a Current Issues Content Fund that provides support to Latino filmmakers producing media projects about current events.
"Together,” said Kathy Im, director of journalism and media at MacArthur, "these seven organizations deepen the pool of people who tell the nation's stories through documentary, including new media storytelling platforms, formats, and technologies."