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Film and Digital Media Grant

Grants to Montana Nonprofits, Schools, IHEs, and
Agencies for Humanities Media Documentary Projects

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Humanities Montana

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Grants ranging from $8,000 to $10,000 to Montana nonprofits, schools, IHEs, government agencies, and groups for humanities-oriented film, video, radio, and internet-based documentary projects. Applicants are required to contact program staff prior to applying.

This program is intended to provide funding for major projects in film, video, television, web-based or other digital media. Major projects are those requiring multiple stages of research and development, production, and post-production and which generally require a script, and a year or more to complete.

The Film and Digital Production Grant has funds available for projects in three different stages. Applicants may elect to apply for each stage sequentially, or may apply for one-time funding at any of the stages. At the completion of each stage, the applicant must submit evidence of progressive and satisfactory development in order to be considered for funding at the next stage.

Stage One: Research and Script development. Expected outcome: shooting script or equivalent (required to progress to Stage Two funding). Applicants must submit an example of previous work.

Stage Two: Principal photography, source material acquisition, rights clearance. Expected outcome: rough cut of film /video or equivalent (required to progress to Stage Three funding). Applicant must submit completed script or detailed narrative treatment.

Stage Three: Completion of product, including post-production. Applicant must submit a rough cut of the project.

All Humanities Montana-funded projects must have
-A central focus in the humanities
-A clearly defined theme
-Professional humanists involved in planning/executing
-No political advocacy
-Include a public program
-Publicity and evaluation plans where appropriate
-1:1 cost-share of in-kind or other funds
-All applications for support of projects that involve Native American communities or cultures must demonstrate involvement of those communities or address why they are not involved.

In addition, Film and Digital Production Grants must:
-Build on sound humanities scholarship
-Deepen public understanding of significant humanities questions
-Appeal to a broad audience
-Approach the subject analytically and interpretively through an appropriate variety of perspectives
-Demonstrate a plan for statewide, regional, or national audience involvement and of secondary non-broadcast distribution and long-term utilization

The arts and humanities are not the same, which is why Montana is served by both an arts council and Humanities Montana. Arts programs usually focus on creation and performance. Humanities programs focus on the interpretive aspects of the arts: discussions about their historical or philosophical contexts, critical analyses of their methodology, lectures or films that look at the characteristics of different art movements or periods. Occasionally Humanities Montana grants modest amounts for performances when such activities are teamed with interpretations, such as when a play or dance is preceded or followed by a lecture or scholar-led discussion.

Other considerations include the following:
-In accepting a grant, the sponsor agrees to use grant funds in accordance with the Humanities Montana grant award letter and general grant provisions.
-Grant funds may be spent only within the grant period for the purposes described in the proposal and for the items specified in the approved budget.
-Records of project expenditures must be maintained. A fiscal manager who is not the project director is required.
-All materials publicizing or resulting from grant activities must contain the appropriate acknowledgement of Humanities Montana support.

Rights to materials (scripts, films, television and radio programs, viewer and listener guides) will ordinarily remain with the grantee; any plan for future use or distribution of such materials must be submitted to the Humanities Montana for approval prior to implementation (unless Humanities Montana has provided less than 25% of total funding.) In addition, the grantee must assure Humanities Montana that utilization of material funded under a grant will be sought on the basis of maximum possible right for non-commercial use or distribution.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 181325

Number of Grants:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Film and digital media grants award $8,000 - $10,000.

Stage One grants are for up to $8,000.

Stage Two grants are for up to $10,000.

Stage Three grants for up to $10,000.

No one project can receive more than $28,000 in total Film and Digital Production Grants.

Term of Contract:

Film and Digital Production Grants are intended to provide multi-year support, or one-time only funding.

Major projects are those requiring multiple stages of research and development, production, and post-production and which generally require a script, and a year or more to complete.

The grant period begins the date funds are awarded and normally ends 30 days after the funded program or activity ends.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible grantees:
-K-12 schools, Colleges, Universities
-Historic preservation societies
-State or local government agencies
-Business and professional groups
-Social service organizations
-Community, religious, or tribal groups
-Noncommercial media firms
-Ad hoc groups

Humanities Montana cannot fund
-Projects that focus on personal instead of public concerns
-Non-public meetings of organizations (although Humanities Montana will consider funding programs open to the public but held in conjunction with a group's meeting)
-Construction, restoration, or operating expenses of existing organizations
-Equipment, property, or other capital purchases
-Museum or library acquisitions, except in unusual circumstances
-Lobbying or direct social action, or planning for direct action, or projects which advocate a particular course of action
-Projects that present a one-sided, uncritical treatment of an issue
-Projects that would raise funds for profit-making groups or for commercial purposes
-Meals or refreshments for an audience
-Alcoholic beverages or entertainment costs
-Candidates running for political office

Pre-Application Information:

Your cost-share to the project is the total of your In-Kind Contributions and Cash Income. Your total estimated cost-share must match your Humanities Montana Funds 1:1. For every dollar you request from Humanities Montana, you must provide at least a dollar of cost-share, either in cash, in-kind, or a mixture of both.

All film and digital production grant applicants must call Humanities Montana staff before applying for any grant.

Applications are due August 20.

The Humanities Montana proposal review process awards grants on a competitive basis. Funding is limited. All Humanities Montana board members review all applications. Decisions are made at the next board meeting following the application deadline. Applicants are notified of Humanities Montana's decision in writing.

Required FED Certifications:

CEO Approval and Certification:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Online Application:

Kim Anderson, Associate Director, Programs

Humanities Montana
311 Brantly
Missoula, MT 59812


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Montana