The SFFILM Rainin Grant program is the largest granting body for independent narrative feature films in the US. Grants support films that address social justice issues—the distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges—in a positive and meaningful way through plot, character, theme, or setting and benefit the Bay Area filmmaking community in a professional and economic capacity.
Awards are made to 15-20 projects once a year in the fall, for screenwriting, development, or post-production. In addition to a cash grant of up to $25,000, recipients secure a one month residency at FilmHouse and benefit from SFFILM’s comprehensive and dynamic artist development programs.
In consideration of the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, our goal is to hold this residency in person and require proof of vaccination, but we plan to make virtual accommodations for those who are unable to do so.
Current SFFILM Rainin Grants are as follows:
Screenwriting Grant: These grants are open to filmmakers anywhere in the US, as well as internationally, and are up to $25,000. The funds allow filmmakers to devote dedicated time to furthering their work, and the grant includes a one-month FilmHouse residency in the Bay Area to further develop the screenplay, and have access to both peer and established mentorship engagement.
Development Grant: These grants are up to $25,000 for producers of narrative features tackling social justice issues who demonstrate a need to engage with the Bay Area to develop and package their films. The grant includes a one-month FilmHouse residency with peer and established mentorship engagement. Successful projects will be at a stage to pursue financing, casting, location scouting, and/or other key activities to package the film before production. Major screenwriting work should be complete by this stage.
Post-production Grant: These grants are up to $40,000 for films that are looking to spend the funds outside of the Bay Area, and up to $50,000 for films looking to do all or some of the post-production in the Bay Area (edit, sound mix, color, etc.). Projects should have significant creative work remaining in the editorial process or have a specific need related to sound or color in post-production. There is no Bay Area residency commitment required for this stage.