Using the Mighty 990 to Fund Your Film

Before You Apply for a Grant, Take a Peek at Who Grantors Funded in Past

by Carole Dean

Where do you start? I read thousands of proposals a year for my Roy W. Dean film grants. I know what wins grants and what turns judges off quickly. Getting it right can be a piece of cake.

Documentary film funding starts with a well-written, organized proposal. It outlines your film’s story, background, and need. It also outlines the approach, structure and style in four to eight pages of dynamite passion.

It continues through finding the right grant for your film, by investigating a funding organization’s 990 as well as reaching out to the right person at that organization who can help you get funded. 

Getting started may be the hard part, when really, this is the best part

Just write page after page of your visions for the film. Don’t worry if you only need a 6 page proposal and you now have 25 pages, just keep putting down what you “see” happening in your film. Focus on your vision of the film.

I realize that you are not sure what your subjects may say in the interviews, but if you did your research thoroughly, you know the subject matter. So, tell it to us as a compelling story and any people you have secured for the film, tell us their story.

Your proposal needs to be a visual description of your film

It’s there somewhere in those 25 pages of written material so read them carefully and find the best visual sections to paste into your proposal. Now, read it over and create your first three dynamite paragraphs that tell me a compelling story.

Put time into this because it is my introduction to your film. You may have been working on it for over a year, but this is my first look. You need to condense the film to three paragraphs to engage me because the first paragraphs are the most important part of the application. It tells me you are a good writer and it shows me your vision of the film.

Don’t start by writing in your proposal how much this film is needed

With our Roy W Dean Grant, we fund stories about interesting characters and concepts. The biggest mistake is to tell us the history in the beginning or to tell us how much this film is needed or that you want to send a message.

Remember, Harry Warner said, “If you want to send a message, go to Western Union, if you want to make a picture, tell me a story!”

That’s just what we want, stories, keep telling us the story and let me see the film it as I read the story.

Who is your audience?

Now, take those 25 pages, cut and paste the information into the background, and keep that separate from the theme and separate from the approach, structure and style. We also want to know how you will market your film. Only 1 in 1000 docs gets a theatrical release and that does not always have a financial return.

Creative filmmakers are building audiences for their films on the web by organizing communities around the film’s issues and these people are donating to their films and waiting to pay for downloads. You should consider distributing it yourself to sell on your website.  Instead of a percentage of each download, you will make the full price.

What are your marketing plans? 

Outreach is a major key to socially oriented films; we want to know that the people who need the film will see it so put outreach in the budget. Did I lose you with that last word?

Well, you have to face the music and go to the left brain now and do a budget but never fear Maureen Ryan www.producertoproducer.com  is perfect for you.  Maureen is an award winner producer of many great documentaries including Dick Johnson is Dead

Her website has sample budgets on her website which is dedicated to supporting independent film producers by sharing helpful and essential information about practical film production.

Using 990’s to find grants that match your project

Finding grants that match your material is paramount to the funding process. Go to
www.grantsmart.org and search for granting organizations by key words.  Once you find them; go to https://candid.org/.

You want to find and check out the Corporations 990 form which is part of their income tax, and candid.org has a slick 990-PF that shows you exactly where the most important funding information is located.  You can find the most recent 990’s at https://www.guidestar.org/

I know is sounds sneaky, to look into some corporation’s income tax, but all is fair in love and doc financing. You can access info on over 200,000 U.S. private and community foundations for free and you will find how much an organization donated in contributions, gifts and grants for prior years.

Don’t enter grants you don’t think you can win

Find a potential funder that matches your film and find the name of the operations officer and, most importantly, find who won last years and prior year’s grants. Is your film a fit? The biggest complaint is that too many people apply for grants that do not fit. See if you can find the prior winner’s web sites, they might even be willing to give you tips on entering this grant.

Don’t enter grants you don’t think you can win. Your time is too valuable, it is best to find grants you think you have the best chance of winning and then write a few more paragraphs in your proposal to tailor it just for them.

I know when someone reads my grant web site information because they say, “My film is unique and makes a contribution to society.” That’s my mission statement and I like to see this because I know they read the guidelines.

While you read each potential funder’s site, keep looking for questions that are not answered, like how many apps did they have last year and what is the amount of money they are giving this year.

Don’t be shy

Now comes the best part of funding. Get the list of corporations or non-profits you think are the best ones to submit your film. Find your question that was not answered on their web site.  Then, search for the name of the granting officer and phone number because you are going to call them!

Don’t be shy. You would never enter a grant without first making contact with the grantor. This is your great opportunity to introduce yourself and make an important connection.

Place your call in “prime time” from 10 to 12 or 2 to 4 and ask to speak directly to the operations officer in charge of the grant. If they don’t answer, try again later or get information on the best time to reach them.

“Touch my heart and I reach for my pocket book.”

Your job is to touch them, remembering that we communicate through the heart chakra.
I say, “Touch my heart and I reach for my pocket book.” Keep this in mind when creating your short pitch. This connection puts energy to your application; it is the voice behind the film.

Now what will you say when you get them on the phone? Go back to your 25 pages and create two lines that bring your film to life and tell them this story as your pitch. Tell them the title of your film and give them this short pitch. Don’t over pitch, that’s the worst thing you can do. Just tell them enough of the story line for them to remember you and the pitch.

You read this person’s bio on the site and you know the films she/he funded in the past.  You want to compliment them on their past selections, for their on-going contributions, and support of filmmakers.  Ask your question that was not answered on the web site.

Be relaxed, have your check list of these things in front of you and make a good impression and keep this phone call under three minutes. Be sure to listen to what they say. Let them talk.

Don’t forget to write and never give up

Once you hang up the phone, write them a nice Hallmark card and mail it that day. Be sure to thank them for the information. Give them your short pitch again in the card. You now have two connections with this person and when they see your application they will remember you through the call and the card and the story of your film.

Realize that we want to fund you; we are looking for emerging and established filmmakers with engaging stories to tell.

We know you are talented, most of the people who give grants are not filmmakers, we are your admirers, and we are astonished at your talents.

The golden rule in applying for grants is “never give up.” Keep going back, I have funded 2 films that entered my grant 3 times, I love filmmaker’s tenacity.

 

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-The Art of Film Funding Podcastprofit that offers the Roy W. Dean Film Grants and fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionHer new class “How to Fund Your Film” is available on Vimeo on Demand.  She is also the author of  The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits 

Finalists Chosen for First Roy. W. Dean Film Grant of 2020

22 Films Selected for Grant Valued at $30K

Celebrating its 28th year, the Roy W. Dean Film Grants are awarded to films that are unique and make a contribution to society.  Awarded 3 times each year, From The Heart Productions, the nonprofit which offers the grant, announced the finalists for their Spring grant.  The winner will receive $3,500 cash and thousands more in donated production services from film industry professionals and companies.

“We were truly fortunate to have received so many outstanding submissions from around the world.” said Carole Dean, President of From the Heart Productions. “We got applications from Estonia, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Canada and Argentina just to name a few.”

The Roy W. Dean Film Grant is open to documentary films, feature films, web series, and short films or a combination.  It is open to filmmakers internationally for films with a budget of under $500,000. The grant is an essential lifeline for filmmakers wishing to finish their films which can often take years.

Unique to the Roy W. Dean Film Grant is all applicants are offered a free consultation on their project. They can discuss their proposals, search for funding, distribution, or whatever they feel is needed to move their film forward.   Winner of the grant is expected to be announced in August.

The grant finalists are:

 

Title Type Filmmaker 
Ginga Short Film Or Schraiber
The Chemical Factory Documentary Andrew Leung
Good Time Fela Short Film Adomako Aman
Live Bum Documentary Beau Sylte
Chaperone Feature Film Zoe Eisenberg
26 Seconds Documentary Kelly Galindo
Scrap Feature Film Vivian Kerr
Seaper Powers: In Search of Bleu Jay’s Treasure Feature Film Kim Cameron
Lea’s DIY TV,Web or New Media Lea Furnion
Scared To Debt: America’s Student Loan Scam Documentary Mike Camoin
Fatima Documentary Sourabh Dutta
Hamlet/Horatio Feature Film David Wenzel
The Golden Rule Documentary Stacey Stone
Pomegranate Short Films Molly Evans
Keeper of Time Documentary Michael Culyba
Martha Feature Film Debra McClutchy
Love Me Bait Me Documentary Rachel Ward
Voice of Vanilla Documentary Maureen Maloney
Fandango at the Wall Documentary Afro Latin Jazz Alliance
Tommies Feature Film Ioanna Karavela
A Journey of a Thousand Miles Documentary Zhu Shen
Tuesday Lunch Documentary DIANE STARK

Each of the grant finalists is given the opportunity to post information on their contending film on the From the Heart Productions website.  Filmmakers can include an image from the film, filmmaker info, and loglines.  If they have available, filmmakers can include a link to their film’s website, Facebook page, or relevant social media connection. 

In addition to the  $3,500 in cash provided by From the Heart Productions the winner will also receive $500 in expendables, lighting or grip equipment from Filmtools,  a G-Technology ArmorATD hard drive with case, 30% discount in equipment rental from AbelCine Tech, Inc. NYC, and more from film industry companies and individuals.

About the Roy W. Dean Grant

Founded in 1992 by Carole Dean, the Roy W. Dean Film Grant seeks films that are unique and make a contribution to society that, without it’s help, might otherwise not get made.  There is a Spring, Summer and Fall Grant.  The Summer Grant is now accepting applications.  Deadline is June 30th

Past winners of the grant include the Emmy winning Mia: A Dancer’s Journey,  2019 Sundance Film Festival selection Raise Hell: The Life and Times of Molly Ivins, and the acclaimed documentary Kusama-Infinity which is now in distribution showing in theaters around the U.S. and world.

About From The Heart Productions

From The Heart Productions is a 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to helping filmmakers get their projects funded and completed.  Besides providing funding through the grant, they offer filmmakers fiscal sponsorship which allows donations made to films they sponsor to be tax deductible.  From the Heart Productions has helped independent filmmakers raise over $10 million through its fiscal sponsorship program.  They also offer Intentional Filmmaking Class which focuses on film funding.  President Carole Dean is the author of the best-selling “ The Art of Film Funding: 2nd Edition, Alternative Financing Concepts” as well as the new online class “How to Fund Your Film”.

 

Win, Shoot, Get Film Score with Roy W. Dean Grant

Roy W. Dean Grant for Fall Offers Cash and Production Services Including Music

Roy W. Dean Film Grant for Fall

Production team from Roy W. Dean Grant Winner “Raise Hell: The Life and Times of Molly Ivins”.  Film Will be in Theaters in September Across U.S.

The final Roy W. Dean Film Grant for Fall 2019 offers indie filmmakers a prize that should be music to their ears as well as their audience.   The winner receives $3,000 cash, $30,000 in film services to shoot and finish their project, including a film score! 

Award winning composer David Raiklen will give the grant recipient $15,000 in theme music for their project.  David provided music for the Emmy and Roy W. Dean Grant winning documentary “Mia: A Dancer’s Journey”. In addition, Emmy award winner Charlie Canfield will donate $6,000 in animation services to the winner.

The Roy W. Dean Grant for Fall

Now in its 27th year, the Roy W. Dean Film Grant seeks films that are unique and make a contribution to society.  Projects can be documentaries, short films, features, or web series. Deadline for submission is October 31st, 2019.

Other prizes include a one week DSLR camera package rental from Birns & Sawyer, $500 in expendables from Filmtools, a 20% discount on the design of your marketing sheet by award winning designer Dan Chapman, and much more from many heartfelt donors

Each Applicant Gets a Consultation on Their Project

Another unique part of the grant is each applicant for the grant is given the opportunity for a 15 minute consultation on their project from a member of the non-profit From The Heart Productions which sponsors the grant. 

More information about the grant can be found at https://fromtheheartproductions.com/roy-w-dean-film-grants-and-awards/

You can apply for the grant at https://fromtheheartproductions.com/grant-application-form/.  

For more information, please email info@fromtheheartproductions.com or call 805-984-0098

About the Roy W. Dean Film Grant 

Founded in 1992, the Roy W. Dean Grant seeks films that are unique and make a contribution to society that, without it’s help, might otherwise not get made. There is a Spring, Summer and Fall Grant. Films submitted to the grant can be short films, documentaries, features, and web series from early stages of pre-production to those needing help in post.

The grant has been integral in helping talented artists with great stories get their films produced. Recent past winners of the grant include the award winning “Heist: Who Stole the American Dream”, “Kusama-Infinity”, and Emmy winner “Mia: A Dancer’s Journey”.

About From the Heart Productions

The 501(c)3 non-profit which sponsors the grant was founded by Carole Dean in 1993 when she saw how many filmmakers with important and often controversial stories were having trouble getting financing for their films. The mission of From the Heart Productions is to educate and assist filmmakers in getting funding to create unique films that make a contribution to society.

Under their fiscal sponsorship program, From the Heart Productions offers advice and guidance to filmmakers looking to fundraise. It also allows donors to projects to get a tax deduction for their donations. Their Intentional Filmmaking Classes which teaches filmmakers the tactics on how to get funded is now open for enrollment. New classes start Sept 23rd.

Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists Named for First Grant of 2019

25 Films Still in Competition for Grant Valued at $30K

From The Heart ProductionsRoy W. Dean Grant Finalists has announced the Roy W. Dean Grant finalists for its Spring 2019 grant.  One of the oldest grants in U.S. for independent filmmakers, the grant is awarded to a film that is unique and makes a contribution to society.  The winner will receive $3,500 cash and thousands more in donated production services from film industry professionals and companies.

“It is always a joy and honor to review all the incredible projects submitted from such talented filmmakers.” said Carole Dean, President of From the Heart Productions. “It was not easy choosing finalists from so many life changing and world changing stories that all need to be told.”

Finalists include documentary films, feature films, web series, and a short film.  These finalists will now go to the judges to determine winner.  The announcement of the winner is expected in September.

List of Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists

TITLE                                                              FILM TYPE           SUBMITTING FILMMAKER

 

El Cadejo Blanco                                               Feature                        Justin Lerner

Pave the Road                                                  Documentary                Kelly Mason

Underdogs                                                       Documentary                Ashia Lance

Girls Are Strong Here                                        Short Film                     Scott Burkhardt

El Susto (The Shock)                                         Documentary                Karen Akins

Women Behind the Wheel                                  Documentary                Hannah Congdon

Made: Meet Me At the Assembly Line                  Documentary                Janette Chien

Scared to Debt:America’s Student Loan Scam      Documentary                 Mike Chamoin

Assisted Living                                                  Web Series                    Amanda Bullis

Perma Red                                                       Documentary                 Maya Dittloff

26 Seconds                                                      Documentary                 Kelly Galindo

Shway Shway                                                   Web Series                    Rachelle Hair

Lady Long Rider                                               Documentary                  Wren Winfield

Donnie                                                            Documentary                  Anna Augustowska

The MicroCosmic Cartoon Show                         Feature                          Prema Rose

Ground Zero: Ferguson                                     Documentary                  Partick Hamm

The Weeping Season                                        Documentary                  Alexandra Hildago

Lady Madonna                                                 Documentary                  Chris Cloyd

90291: Venice Unzipped                                   Documentary                   Colin K. Gray

Dawn Dusk                                                     Documentary                   Jason & Blue Gerber

The Sixty-Six Percent                                       Documentary                   Natalie Abruzzo

The Queen of the Lowriders                             Documentary                    Debbie Sanchez

Amara & Family                                              Feature                            Suman Hanif

Grounded: The Roots of the Revolution             Documentary                    Simon Geisker

La Recua (Saddling South)                               Documentary                    Trudi Angell

 

In addition to the  $3,500 in cash provided by From the Heart Productions the donations of film services and products include $500 in expendables, lighting or grip equipment from Filmtools,  a Glyph StudioRaid 6TB hard drive from Glyph Production Technologies, 40% deduction on color, editing, and sound & all production services from ProMedia NYC and more from film industry donors.

About the Roy W. Dean Grant

Founded in 1992, the Roy W. Dean Grant seeks films that are unique and make a contribution to society that, without it’s help, might otherwise not get made.  There is a Spring, Summer and Fall Grant.  The Fall 2019 Grant is now accepting entries.  Films submitted to the grant can be short films, documentaries, features, and web series from early stages of pre-production to those needing help in post. 

The grant has been integral in helping talented artists with great stories get their films produced.  Recent past winners of the grant include the award winning “Heist: Who Stole the American Dream”, “Kusama-Infinity”, and Emmy winner “Mia: A Dancer’s Journey”.  

About From the Heart Productions

The 501(c)3 non-profit was founded by Carole Dean in 1993 when saw how many filmmakers with important and often controversial stories were having trouble getting financing for their films.  The mission of From the Heart Productions is to educate and assist filmmakers in getting funding to create unique films that contribute to society. 

Under their fiscal sponsorship program, From the Heart Productions offers advice and guidance to filmmakers looking to fundraise.  It also allows donors to projects to get a tax deduction for their donations.  Their Intentional Filmmaking Classes which teaches filmmakers the tactics on how to get funded is now open for enrollment.  New classes start Sept 23rd.

How to Take Control of Your Film’s Financial Future

Conversation with award winning filmmaker Karen Day on the importance of being your film’s advocate and getting the upper hand with a film distributor 

by Carole Dean

Karen Day is a very successful writer, photographer, and filmmaker because she made it happen.  She is always working on creating a successful future for herself.  She focuses on humanitarian issues in exotic locales like Afghanistan, Cuba, Myanmar, pre-war Iraq, pre-Madonna Malawi, Hollywood, and Washington, DC.  They’ve offered her exciting opportunities to dodge bullets and write for national publications like More Magazine, O, The Los Angeles Times, and The Pentagon.

Film Distributor

Director Karen Day on location with cast and crew from “Nell Shipman: The Girl From God’s Country”

Winner as writer and producer of the Roy W. Dean Grant for Nell Shipman, The Girl from God’s Country, she joined me on my The Art of Film Funding Podcast.  She offered advice to independent women filmmakers just starting out on which we both agreed. 

While it’s important to seek out others for advice, independent filmmakers need to take active control of the future of their own work to have a successful career and to make any money.

The Harry Potter Effect

Karen says one of her real joys is being able to mentor women, young women beginning their career in filmmaking. “It’s a real tipping point right now in the industry. There’s so much opportunity. And it’s difficult to find a mentor.”

“But, Carole, you know better than anyone, and I think you’re one of the major voices in how to manifest and believe in yourself that you can get things done. I call it the Harry Potter effect. I put my mind to an idea and start whipping results out of the ether. I might as well have a master wand.”

This is very true.  Karen realizes that your faith in yourself and in your film is paramount to a successful production.  Your attitude towards yourself and your film must always be of the highest level as you deserve to be funded.  Belief and faith will carry you a long way in the film industry “and make doors open where there were no doors before.” 

The Dark Web of the Film Festivals

Karen was at Raindance Film Festival with her latest film Bamboo and Barbed Wire, a documentary that chronicles the life of a 17- year old Syrian refugee girl in Idaho.  She says that Raindance is a premier festival and they give filmmakers an amazing amount of support. There are distributors there from around the world.

But, she warns, don’t assume that just by getting accepted and networking will get you a deal for your film. 

“There’s a lot in the film festival world that independents still have to learn the hard way. You think oh, ’I’m going to get accepted, and then I’m going to be distributed, and then I’m going to be famous.’ No, actually, there’s a lot of innerness and I call it the dark web, the dark world of politics that goes on in film festivals.

“It’s a good way to meet people and make connections, but it’s not as simplistic as it appears. Film festivals and film distributors are in the business of making money on movies, and producers and writers and directors and cinematographers are in the business of making movies. And it’s a hard lesson to learn that there are two different businesses.”

She is right.  The distributors want to buy the film for the cheapest price possible and filmmakers think they will get prices near what was quoted in Variety for recent sales.  However, these prices are normally exceptional prices.  Distributors and Netflix and Amazon are paying low prices unless you have a known actor in a feature or a documentary.  In that case, it’s a bit higher but not what they were paying a few years ago. 

The information I get from our fiscally sponsored filmmakers is that by the time they get to a festival, usually they are tired from years of producing and are ready to let go of the film.  Once they get an offer, they are so excited that someone loves the film and wants to help, that they often make poor decisions.  Distributors are offering egregious contracts and very low up-front money these days. 

 

 

Finding Out What Your Film is Worth

Because of the horror stories I have heard from filmmakers about bad contracts, distributors not complying with contracts and people selling their film for 20% of the cost, I started a search for who is paying what for films.  That search turned into a blog.

It’s very important that we know the current selling price for docs and features. So, if you want to share any information on what the current prices are for films and docs, please contact me.  All info will be kept confidential.

Karen says that going to the festivals and talking to other filmmakers is the best way to find what happened to other filmmakers, what prices they were paid, who are the worst distributors and who to watch out for.  You won’t find this information in print, only word of mouth or in our blog talk shows where some filmmakers will offer up the truth about their poor distribution deal.

Find Leverage with a Film Distributor

Karen said that getting a distributor as an independent is not always what you thought it would be. Often, people think that a distributor will change your life.  You need to know what money you can make and you need leverage to negotiate.

“The one thing I can say is, if you do have a distributor that’s interested, immediately contact several distributors to see if they will be interested.  Because then, you have more power to negotiate a minimum guarantee.  Number one thing I say to independent filmmakers is, your MG, your minimum guarantee with the distributor may be the only dime you ever see.  So, make sure that you negotiate that.   And the best way to do it is to get more interest than one distributor.

“I did that, and so I was able to negotiate more money than I was originally offered. And I naively thought, oh, well, this is going to be a cakewalk now.  But what’s true is my distributor is in the business of making money on movies, and they’re like a shark. They have to keep moving to pick up more films and compete with all these distributors to find the next great documentaries.

Be an Advocate for Yourself

“I literally had to become a thorn. I’ve been working with the major network media for a long time, so I know what it’s like to push. And some people don’t have that advantage, because I’m older, too. It’s not like I’m 20. I’ve been around the block, as they say, about 4,000 times.

“The bottom line is, none of it’s easy. It was a daily process of what are you doing, what’s happening? Otherwise, you seep into the carpet and you’re thinking, oh, it’s going to happen for me. Mm-mm (negative).

“I can definitely say there have been a couple of great films. The great film Sonita, which is about the Afghan rapper who escaped an arranged marriage. Somebody was doing a documentary on her and they bought her out of the marriage.  It won an Audience Award at Sundance, and it was sold to PBS National.  I can’t divulge how much it was, but I would say it’s not enough to buy a used car.

“I really feel that the art of film negotiation is the number one thing, and the art of film funding. You have to be your own best advocate, and you just want to say, ‘Oh, I’m an artist.’ Well, you can be a starving artist all you want, but you better learn to be a business person too if you want to make a living at your art.”

 

 

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-The Art of Film Funding Podcastprofit that offers the Roy W. Dean Film Grants and fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionShe is also the author of  The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits.

Fall 2016 Roy W. Dean Grant Won by “Do No Harm”

“Silent Epidemic” of Physician Suicide Exposed in Eye-Opening Documentary Feature

Oxnard, CA Jan 16th, 2016   Why are the doctors we rely on to keep us healthy, ending their own lives at an alarming rate?  Emmy winning former PBS Producer/Director Robyn Symon examines this critical problem in the documentary Do No Harm, the winner of the Fall 2016 Roy W. Dean Grant.   As the grant winner, Robyn will receive $30K in cash, film products, and services to help her finish her project. 

Still from Roy W. Dean Grant Winner “Do No Harm”

The Roy W. Dean Grant is awarded 3 times each year to a unique film that makes a contribution to society.   Founded in 1993 by the 501(c)3 non-profit From the Heart Productions, grants are open to all types of film projects including documentaries, short films, features, and web series in any stage of production

Following three people bonded by grief, “Do No Harm” delves into why young physicians in medical school have the highest suicide rate of any profession, almost twice the national average.  They are jumping from hospital roofs, hanging themselves in closets and overdosing on readily available drugs. “This documentary reveals a dark side of our medical system.” commented Carole Dean, president of From the Heart Productions. “We are proud to support Robyn and her work to shine a light through her film on this important underreported story.”

The film shows how what it calls this ‘dirty little secret” in the medical community is a symptom of a broken heath care system that’s not only putting the lives of doctors at risk…  but patients too.

“Medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death in the United States alone,”notes director Robyn Symone,”often caused by sleep-deprived and disillusioned doctors forced to practice assembly line medicine. And the crisis is getting worse.”

About the Filmmaker

Robyn Symon is a two-time Emmy winning Producer/Director and has produced programming for many national networks including PBS, The Travel Channel, CNBC and DISCOVERY HEALTH. Robyn began her career as a TV news reporter in Texas before joining the PBS station WPBT in Miami, where she produced documentaries, public affairs programs, the TV series Florida!, the docu-series Voices of Vision, and the medical series Health & Family airing on the Discovery Health network.

Her most recent film, Uncle Gloria: One Helluva Ride!, was selected for a prestigious Film Independent Documentary Lab Fellowship and will premiere at a Miami film festival in April 2016. In addition to two Emmys, Robyn has been honored with 3 national Telly awards; 2 national NABJ awards and honors by both the Associated Press and UPI.

The Fall 2016 Roy W. Dean Grant includes $3,000 cash given by From The Heart Productions.  The winners also receive a hard drive from G-Technology, $15,000 in theme and score music from composer David Raiklen,  $6,000 in animation services from Charlie Canfield,  one week DSLR camera package rental from Birns & Sawyer,  and much more from many heart-felt donors

About the Roy W. Dean Grant

Now in its 23rd year, the Roy W. Dean Grant has awarded over $2,000,000 in cash and donated film services to films.  The grant has been an important lifeline for filmmakers needing help to continue working on their film and to get it completed.  Without assistance from the grant, many excellent and important films may never have been made. 

Past winners of the grant that have been completed include the Emmy winning Mia: A Dancer’s Journey, the SXSW Best of Fest Music Film The Winding Stream: An Oral History of the Carter and Cash Family, and the now in release on video and on demand the very relevant The Brainwashing of My Dad.

About From The Heart Productions

From The Heart Productions is a 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to helping filmmakers get their projects funded and made.  Besides providing funding through the grant, they are also a fiscal sponsor which allows donations made to films they sponsor to be tax deductible.  From The Heart has raised over $2.4 million for crowdfunding films as a partner with Indiegogo.  President Carole Dean is the best-selling author of The Art of Film Funding: 2nd Edition, Alternative Financing Concepts

For More Information, please contact

Richard Kaufman

richard@fromtheheartproductions.com

www.fromtheheartproductions.com

Finalists Chosen for Roy W. Dean Spring Film Grant

6 Films in Running for 1st Roy W. Dean Film Grant of 2016

From The Heart Productions, the non-profit dedicated to helping filmmakers get funding, announced the 6 finalists for the Roy W. Dean Spring Film Grant.  Winner will receive $30,000 in a combination of cash and donated services from film industry professionals and companies.

Grant finalist "U Htein Lin – Mr. Bright and Shiny"

Grant finalist “U Htein Lin – Mr. Bright and Shiny”

The 6 finalists were selected out of an initial group of 22 finalists for grant.  Over 225 submissions were received for this year’s grant.  The projects included features, short films, documentary, and web series.

“Filmmakers with unique stories that contribute to society have the toughest road to get funding” said From the Heart President Carole Dean “That is why we founded the grant.  Without it’s help, these projects might otherwise never get made.”

The grant includes $3,500 in cash and donations of film services and products.  Some of which include a 1TB G-Drive ev ATC from G-Technology, a 30% discount in equipment rental from AbelCine Tech, Inc. NYC, 40% deduction on color, editing, and production services from ProMedia, and much more from those who care about helping independent filmmakers.

The films and their filmmakers chosen as Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists are:

Belly of the Beast – Erika Cohn – Documentary intimately chronicles the journey of women fighting reproductive injustice in their communities.

Holden On – Tamlin Hall – Based on a true story of dual diagnosis, the feature is a dynamic 17-year-old’s point of view journey to keep his mental illness a secret at all costs.

How the Cats Took Over the Internet – Laurin Lazin – Documentary feature film for all ages. It takes a provocative and entertaining look at the history, meaning, and impact of user-generated content… as seen through the lens of the cat video.

Stranger at Home – Luis Remesar – Documentary film about a Navy psychologist’s mission to hold military medicine accountable for solutions to the mental health epidemic decimating our warrior class.

The Coverup – Malina Fagan – The documentary reveals startling information previously hidden from consumers that links exposure to low dose chemicals used in soaps, lotions, baby shampoos, deodorants, etc. to devastating health effects such as cancer, infertility, birth defects and more. This solution oriented film teaches viewers how to protect themselves, their families and the environment, and challenges our government to protect the public.

U Htein Lin – Mr. Bright and Shiny – Vanessa Smith – Documentary on a Burmese artist who was sentenced to prison without a fair trial and who spent 6 and one half years in prison.

About the Roy W. Dean Grant

Now in its 24th year, the Roy W. Dean Grant is awarded 3 times each year.   There is a Spring, Summer and Fall Grant.  The Fall Grant is now accepting entries and closes September 30th.  Films submitted to the grant can be short films, documentaries or features from early stages of pre-production to those needing help in post.

The grant has been integral in helping talented artists with great stories get their films produced.  Recent past winners of the grant include the award winning “Heist: Who Stole the American Dream” and “The Winding Stream: An Oral History of the Carter and Cash Family”, and Mia: A Dancer’s Journey which just won an Emmy award.

About From The Heart Productions

The 501(c)3 non-profit was founded by Carole Dean when she saw how many filmmakers with important, new, and often controversial stories were having trouble getting financing for their films.    From The Heart is a fiscal sponsor for films which allows donors to get a tax deduction for their donations.  Their Intentional Filmmaking Class that teaches filmmakers the tactics on how to get funded is now open for enrollment.  Classes start September 26th.