Producers Lab
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Producing Lab

What is the Producing Lab?

An intensive seven-week program that takes place in Los Angeles every Autumn, Film Independent’s Producing Lab is designed to help filmmakers develop skills as creative independent producers. Producers apply with feature length narrative projects that they are in the process of producing; through the lab, fellows will develop a strategy and action plan for bringing their current projects to fruition.

The Producing Lab also helps to further the careers of the Lab Fellows by introducing them to film professionals who can advise them on both the craft and business of independent producing. Participants with qualifying projects are also eligible for a $30,000 production grant awarded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Rocket Science movie poster

Effie Brown, FT ’06

Benefits

  • A pass to the Filmmaker Forum, which kicks off the Producing Lab
  • A pass to the Los Angeles Film Festival
  • A pass to the American Film Market
  • Inclusion in the FIND Talent Guide
  • Year-round support from Film Independent
  • Eligibility to receive production grants from Film Independent

Past Projects

Maryam Keshavarz’s Circumstance, Tina Mabry’s Mississippi Damned,Scott Prendergast’s Kabluey; Aric Avelino’s American Gun, and So Yong Kim’s In Between Days

Past Advisors

Ram Bergman (Brick), Effie Brown (Rocket Science), Eric d’Arbeloff (Lovely and Amazing), Matthew Greenfield (The Good Girl), Ted Kroeber (American Gun), Gina Kwon (Me and You and Everyone We Know), Meg LeFauve (The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys), Shelby Stone (Lackawanna Blues), and Ron Yerxa (Little Miss Sunshine).

Past Guest Speakers

Stephanie Allain (Hustle and Flow), Nicole Arbusto (casting director), Michael Donaldson (Donaldson & Callif), Craig Emanuel (Loeb & Loeb), Debra Grieco (The Assassination of Richard Nixon), Amy Israel (Shall We DanceHysterical Blindness), Sam Kitt (Future Films), Julie Lynn (Albert Nobbs), Peggy Rajski (Bee Season), and Janet Yang (Dark Matter).

Alfred P. Sloan Producers Grant

The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation will award one participant of Film Independent’s Producing Lab the annual Sloan Producers Grant. The recipient will receive a $25,000 development grant, admission to Film Independent’s Producing Lab, and year-round support from Film Independent.

The grant is funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, which seeks to create and develop new scripts and films about science and technology and to see them into commercial production with national and international distribution. The Sloan Foundation has screenplay development programs with the Tribeca, Sundance, and Hamptons Film Festivals, as well as other select independent partners and film schools.

To apply for the Sloan Producers Grant, the filmmaker must apply to the Producing Lab and provide a statement as to why the project deserves the grant and 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.

Documentaries and science fiction projects are not eligible for the Sloan Producers Grant.

Applications for Producing Lab are currently closed

How to Apply

A maximum of ten projects will be selected for the lab. Producing teams are welcome to apply. To be eligible, applicants must be attached to produce a feature-length narrative film. Applicants must submit the following materials for consideration:

  • Cover Letter explaining your interest in the Producing Lab
  • Complete feature-length screenplay
  • Logline and synopsis
  • Bios of key cast and crew attached
  • Project status and history
  • Budget information and finance plan
  • Prior work sample (DVD or online link)
  • Non-refundable application fee ($45 Film Independent Member; $65 Non-Member)

Film Independent membership is not required when applying to Film Independent Artist Development Labs; however, all participants accepted into the labs are required to be Film Independent members at the standard rate of $95. Documentary, short film, and television projects are not eligible to apply. Submitted DVD materials will not be returned.

Selection Criteria

We are looking for talented 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. We do not require that the project have any financing in place, but want to see evidence that the creative team has given serious thought to the budget and can articulate why they have budgeted the film at a particular level.

Cost

Aside from the application fee, there is no tuition to attend Film Independent’s Artist Development Programs.

Film Independent offers the Filmmaker Labs to support emerging writers, directors, and producers in the development of their craft as well as their projects. We do ask that once completed, films that have been supported by the Labs include the end credit “Developed with the help of the Film Independent Filmmaker Labs” with the Film Independent logo.

Got questions? Click here for Filmmaker Labs FAQs.

For more information, please contact Angela Lee, Artist Development Manager, at 310.432.1262 or alee@filmindependent.org.

 

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