Producers Lab
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Producing Lab

What is Film Independent’s Producing Lab?

An intensive four-week program held in Los Angeles each fall, the Film Independent Producing Lab is designed to help filmmakers develop skills as creative, independent producers. Producers apply with feature length narrative projects that are already in active development or pre-production; through the lab, Fellows then develop strategies and action plans for bringing those projects to fruition.

The Producing Lab also helps to further the careers of its Fellows by introducing them to film professionals who can advise them on both the craft and business of independent producing. In addition to attending class sessions with guest speakers from film’s legal, financial, and production arenas, each Producing Fellow will be paired with an experienced Creative Advisor with whom they’ll work in class and one-on-one to further develop their project over the course of the program. The Lab culminates in a daylong pitch session with established executives, which offers participants valuable practical experience—and the chance to expose their projects to a larger cross-section of the industry.

The application deadline for the 2015 Producing Lab has passed.
We will begin accepting applications for the 2016 Producing Lab in late April.

Benefits

  • Attendance at the annual Film Independent Forum
  • A pass to the Los Angeles Film Festival
  • A pass to the American Film Market
  • Inclusion in the Film Independent Talent Guide
  • Year-round support from Film Independent
  • Eligibility for production grants from Film Independent

Alfred P. Sloan Producers Grant

The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation will award one participant of the Film Independent Producing Lab the annual Sloan Producers Grant of $30,000 with which to further develop their project.

Sloan’s Film Program encourages filmmakers to create more realistic and compelling stories about science and technology and to challenge existing stereotypes about scientists and engineers in the popular imagination. Sloan has partnerships with some of the top film schools in the country and supports screenplay development programs at Sundance, Tribeca, the Hamptons International Film Festival, Film Independent (Producing Lab and Fast Track) and has developed such film projects as Morten Tyldum’s The Imitation Game, Rob Meyer’s A Birder’s Guide to Everything, Musa Syeed’s Valley of Saints, and Andrew Bujalski’s Computer Chess.

To apply for the Sloan Producers Grant, a filmmaker must apply to the Producing Lab and provide a statement on how the project fulfills the mission of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The applicant must be attached as producer and possess the rights to the script with which they are applying. The screenplay should have a scientific, mathematical, and/or technological theme and storyline, or have a leading character that is a scientist, engineer, or mathematician.

At this time, documentaries and science fiction projects are not eligible for the Sloan Producers Grant.

Who Can Apply?

The Producing Lab is open to any producer formally attached to a full-length, narrative feature film with a completed script and director in place. Applicants must control the rights to the project with which they apply. Producing partners are welcome to apply as teams and need only submit a single application. International applicants are welcome to apply. At this time, documentary, short film, and television projects are not eligible to apply.

How to Apply:

Applicants must submit the following materials for consideration:

  • A cover letter explaining your interest in the Producing Lab
  • One complete, feature-length screenplay
  • A logline and synopsis
  • Bios of attached key cast and crew
  • Project status and history
  • Budget information and a finance plan
  • A prior work sample (via DVD* or online link)
  • A non-refundable application fee of $45 for Film Independent Members; $65 for non-Members

* Please note that materials submitted on DVD will not be returned.

Selection Criteria

Film Independent is looking for determined producers with feature-length, narrative film projects that are compelling, original, and demonstrate a filmmaker’s uniqueness of vision. All projects must have directors attached in order to be eligible for consideration. Projects need not have full or partial financing in place at the time of application; however, it is vital that each application demonstrate serious attention to the film’s budget from the creative team as a whole, and that the applicant be able to articulate the reasoning behind their budget level.

The Fine Print

Beyond the application fee, there is no cost or tuition to participate in any of Film Independent’s Artist Development programs.

Film Independent membership is not required when applying to Artist Development Labs; however, all participants accepted into the labs are required to join Film Independent at the standard annual membership rate of $95.

Those applicants who are invited to participate in the program should plan to be in Los Angeles for the four-week duration of the Lab. Film Independent is unable to subsidize any travel, lodging and/or visa expenses for any participants attending from outside of Los Angeles. Participants are expected to attend all sessions in person.

For more information, please email: artistdevelopment@filmindependent.org.

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