Got Project Involve questions? We've got answers!

If you still have questions after reading this FAQ, please reach out to artistdevelopment@filmindependent.org.

Who is eligible to apply to Project Involve?

Applications are open to writers, directors, writer/directors, producers, cinematographers, editors, film programmers, editors, animators and those working toward executive roles. Strong consideration is given to applicants who are able to provide work samples and statements of interest that demonstrate talent, responsibility and collaborative effort. Applicants must be at least 21 years of age on or before September 1, 2024.

To view sample application material and/or essay criteria for the various Project Involve tracks, click here.

How long does the Project Involve (PI) Fellowship last?

Project Involve 2025 will begin in February 2025 (with 2-3 dates in January 2025 that Fellows will need to attend) and end at approximately the end of October/November 2025. Dates subject to change.

What kind of time commitment is required?

The in-person commitment averages approximately 10-12 hours per week. Beyond that, time spent will vary depending on the stage the program is in, and/or your individual pace at turning around additional materials. For example, Fellows focused on writing will spend time developing their drafts, those focusing on producing will spend time reading scripts and preparing materials, etc.

Can I maintain my full-time job?

The Fellowship typically takes place in the evening, from 7:00-10:00 pm PT, although some sessions will start at 6:00 pm. Attendance at weekend sessions will occasionally be required.

Can I Zoom/video call into sessions?

No. Project Involve takes place in Los Angeles and is an in-person program.

I’m applying as a writer or writer/director and I already have a script for a short that’s ready to shoot. Can I just submit that?

Project Involve is an “inception to completion” program, so previously written scripts may not be submitted. Each year, a unique theme for Project Involve will be provided, which serves to guide the creation of scripts written and developed over the first 3-4 months of the program.

How new should the work samples that I submit with my application be?

Work samples should be from the last five years (i.e. completed after January 1, 2019).

Can I apply as a team with my creative partner (co-writer, co-director, co-producer, etc.)?

We do not accept teams in any tracks. Applicants must be the sole writer/director/etc.

Can I apply to multiple tracks?

Yes, but each track requires a separate application.

For example, if you wanted to apply as both a director and a producer, you would first apply to the Director track and submit the specific application materials required, plus the application fee. Then, you would apply to the Producer track and submit those specific application materials, along with a second application fee.

If accepted, can I apply to a different Project Involve track in the future?

No. Project Involve Fellows may only participate in the program once, though they are welcome to apply to other Film Independent Artist Development programs.

Is Film Independent Membership required to participate in Project Involve?

Yes. If selected for the new cohort, you must become a Film Independent Member for the duration of the year ($95/year). If you are already a Member and your Membership ends during the Fellowship period, you must renew.

Who is responsible for funding the short films that are produced in Project Involve?

Teams will typically raise anywhere from $5,000 to $30,000 for their own project. Each team/project is also given a small stipend. Additional funding via program sponsorship fluctuates year to year. Fundraising is considered a group effort; the responsibility does fall on any one team member/individual.

Once my team’s short is complete, can we submit it to film festivals?

Yes! The responsibility to raise the funds needed to pay for festival submission fees and submit the completed films falls on the team members of each project. Please note, the short films may not be publicly uploaded anywhere. Fellows use FilmFreeway or individual festival websites to upload/submit their shorts, typically using a password protected Vimeo link.

Does Project Involve own the rights to the script and/or film?

Film Independent owns the rights to the short, not the written material. Fellows sign a contract prior to their acceptance into the program that provides greater detail.

What is the application deadline, and when will I find out if I’ve been accepted?

Applications open: Monday, May 20
Non-Member Deadline: Monday, July 15
Member Deadline: Monday, July 29

Applicants will be informed no later than December 2024.