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Fund Your Project with the IDA’s Massive List of Grants

Bud Simpson

The International Documentary Association supports filmmakers, and it can help you get the financing you need to bring your projects to life.

Cover image via Shutterstock.

The International Documentary Association (IDA) hosts an impressive list of grants and funding opportunities for independent filmmakers and documentarians.

With close to 150 funding programs, the list includes grants and awards ranging from $250 to $500,000 (most awards fall in the $10,000 to $25,000 range). The IDA also offers a longstanding fiscal sponsorship program, which allows filmmakers to apply for grants that would otherwise require a partnership with a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.

Fund Your Project with the IDA's Massive List of Grants — Live Shoot
Image via Sam McGhee.

Documentary storytelling expands our understanding of shared human experience, fostering an informed, compassionate, and connected world. The International Documentary Association (IDA) is dedicated to building and serving the needs of a thriving documentary culture. Through its programs, the IDA provides resources, creates community, and defends rights and freedoms for documentary artists, activists, and journalists. —IDA’s Mission Statement

IDA’s list of grants support the following types of projects:

  • Development (pre-production, scripting, treatments, etc.).
  • Production (equipment, goods/services/labor subsidies, etc.).
  • Post-production (editing, sound design, etc.).
  • Distribution (marketing, festivals, competitions, outreach & engagement, etc.).
  • By topic (human rights, gender, the environment, economic policy, etc).
  • By filmmaker (emerging filmmakers, female, Middle-Eastern, LGBTQ, etc.).
  • By location (U.S., Africa, Latin America, Asia, Middle East, etc.).
  • By medium (web-based, digital media, VR/AR, etc.).

Fund Your Project with the IDA's Massive List of Grants — Photograph of Photographer
Image via Martin Bekerman.

In addition to the massive list of grants from third party organizations, the IDA hosts its own grant programs. The Pare Lorentz Documentary Fund “supports full-length documentary films that reflect the spirit and nature of Pare Lorentz’s work” and offers grants ranging from $15,000 to $25,000.

The majority of awards are for documentary projects. However, a few of the grants offer funding to all kinds of film projects, including short films, feature narratives, animation, and experimental films.

You can access the full list of grants here.