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Canon Filmmaker Award Program

Márcia Nunes & Elena Greenlee, Manos Sucias
2013 Quarter 1 Recipients

Milena Pastreich, Birdmen
2013 Quarter 2 Recipient

The Canon Filmmaker Award Program is a program for Film Independent Fellows, alumni of the Los Angeles Film Festival and Spirit Awards Nominees and Winners.

Film Independent will select qualified filmmakers on a quarterly basis who will be loaned Canon camera packages for their production. These packages will be reserved for filmmakers who are scheduled to shoot feature-length narrative or documentary films (or in special cases, short films) during the quarter immediately following the application deadline.

The Award includes a camera package of one (1) Canon Cinema EOS package loaned to assist the winning filmmaker with a qualifying feature.


  • Applicants must be the director or producer of a feature – narrative or documentary – that is preparing to shoot.
  • Applicants must be either (a) alumni of Film Independent’s Artist Development programs; (b) alumni of the Los Angeles Film Festival; (c) a past Spirit Award Nominee or Winner; or (d) solicited by Film Independent.
  • All submitted films must be feature length, and in special cases, short films will be considered.
  • Applicants must be current Film Independent Members.


Applications for the Canon Filmmaker Award Program are currently closed


How to Apply

Applicants must apply online and submit the following materials for consideration:

  • $45 application fee
  • Cover letter explaining your interest in the award and why you feel the Canon camera package is best suited to your production needs and artistic vision
  • Detailed written plan outlining the filmmaker’s production timeline and funds raised to date
  • Project status and history, including any awards the script has won, talent development programs the project has been developed in, etc.
  • Top-sheet of budget
  • A copy of the script
  • Logline and synopsis
  • Bios of key cast and crew
  • Name and bio of cinematographer, along with sample of cinematographer’s previous work (online link or DVD)

In order to receive the equipment loan, selected filmmakers will be required to sign an agreement with Canon allowing them access to assets and to capture print, photo, and video testimonials in conjunction with this program for promotional purposes, should they request it. Canon will work with filmmakers to ensure that the public release of these materials are aligned with the films’ marketing and PR strategies.

Selection Process

The Canon Filmmaker Award is awarded on a quarterly basis. Film Independent will review all submissions for each award cycle and select a winner of the award. The winner will be featured on the Film Independent website.

Selection Criteria

Film Independent employs the following guidelines in making its selections:

  • Overall quality of script
  • Strength of production plan
  • Strength of cinematographer’s previous work
  • Uniqueness of vision
  • Original, provocative subject matter
  • Economy of means
  • Well-conceived plan for use of the award

Overseeing the Award

Film Independent staff will select the winner of the award on a quarterly basis, will oversee the administration of the award to the winning filmmaker and will monitor the production throughout.

Previous Canon Filmmaker Award Recipients


If you have questions or need more information, please contact Jennifer Kushner, Director of Artist Development:

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