Grants Database

The Foundation awards approximately 200 grants per year (excluding the Sloan Research Fellowships), totaling roughly $80 million dollars in annual commitments in support of research and education in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and economics. This database contains grants for currently operating programs going back to 2008. For grants from prior years and for now-completed programs, see the annual reports section of this website.

Grants Database

Grantee
Amount
City
Year
  • grantee: Columbia University
    amount: $289,541
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2016

    To encourage the next generation of filmmakers to write screenplays and produce short films about science and technology through enhanced research, mentorship, and award opportunities

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Trey Ellis

    This grant continues support for a program at Columbia University that aims to encourage the next generation of filmmakers to write screenplays and produce short films about science and technology. Supported activities include two annual $10,000 awards given to the best student screenplay with a scientific or technological theme; two $20,000 production awards to help produce a science-themed film project; a student mentoring program and an annual information session and panel discussion introducing students to  the program offerings and to working scientists; and off-campus learning activities that expose student filmmakers to the process of scientific inquiry and cutting-edge developments in modern science. Grant funds provide support for these and related activities for three years.

    To encourage the next generation of filmmakers to write screenplays and produce short films about science and technology through enhanced research, mentorship, and award opportunities

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  • grantee: San Francisco Film Society
    amount: $417,500
    city: San Francisco, CA
    year: 2015

    To nurture, develop, and champion films that explore scientific or technological themes and characters

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Noah Cowan

    This grant provides two years of funding for a series of initiatives by SSFILM to support and nurture films and filmmakers that tackle scientific or technological themes or feature scientists, mathematicians, or engineers as major characters. Three distinct but interrelated activities are supported. The first is a filmmaker fund for screenwriters working on science and technology films, with one winning screenwriter the first year and two in the second. Each filmmaker will receive a $35,000 grant and a two-month residency at the Film House, SSFILMS’s newly built artist residency facility. In addition to residency, supported screenwriters will have their work presented in staged readings both at the Festival and at other events around the country. Second, SSFILM will host an annual film prize for the best science- or technology-themed film submitted. Selected by an independent panel of filmmakers and scientists, the winning film will be announced in December at a high-profile screening event aimed at attracting critical notice. Third, SFFILMwill partner with The Black List, an influential annual industry survey of the best unproduced screenplays, to send a Sloan-supported screenwriter to its coveted annual screenwriting workshop. The collection of activities represents an exciting new partnership for the Sloan Film Festival program, which builds bridges between the film industry and Silicon Valley’s active and energetic science and technology culture.

    To nurture, develop, and champion films that explore scientific or technological themes and characters

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  • grantee: Carnegie Mellon University
    amount: $292,500
    city: Pittsburgh, PA
    year: 2015

    To encourage top film students to write screenplays about science and technology

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Robert Handel

    This grant provides continued support for a program at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Drama (CMU) that exposes top dramatic writing students to science and technology and awards prizes to student screenwriters who write science- or technology-themed scripts. The CMU program includes a fall symposium that brings scientists to the drama school to introduce students to recent developments in a variety of scientific disciplines; a year-long screenwriting workshop that meets weekly and focuses on the challenges and opportunities posed by incorporating science into dramatic or comedic narratives, a mentorship program that pairs film students with working scientists to help them depict science accurately in their work, an annual screenwriting competition that awards $17,500 to the two best science-themed scripts submitted, and yearly showcases in Los Angeles and New York that bring student filmmakers into contact with leading producers, directors, and distributors in the film and television industry. Grant funds provide core support for these activities for another two years.

    To encourage top film students to write screenplays about science and technology

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  • grantee: Tribeca Film Institute
    amount: $800,000
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2015

    To build on the TFI Sloan Filmmaker Fund's success and to raise the profile of Sloan screenings, readings, and panels at the Tribeca Film Festival and year-round

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Anna Ponder

    The grant provides two years of continued support for a partnership with the Tribeca Film Institute in its continuing efforts to highlight excellent high-quality narrative films with scientific and technological themes. The TFI/Sloan Filmmaker Fund supports science-themed film projects in a wide variety of ways, giving grants of between $15,000 and $25,000 for screenplay development, optioning of literary material for adaption, and preproduction expenses like casting or location scouting. Additional postproduction grants are also available for science-themed projects, including funds for sound editing, negative cutting, and printmaking.  In addition to grants to offset pre- and postproduction expenses, supported filmmakers receive help from scientific and industry advisors, to shepherd the project through production, and are mentored by TFI’s insiders. In addition to the TFI Filmmaker Fund, TFI hosts several science-themed events at the annual Tribeca Film Festival, including a staged reading of screenplays by supported artists, a retrospective screening of a classic science-themed movie and panel discussion of the film by scientists and industry professionals, and an industry reception that brings supported filmmakers together with leading Hollywood executives and distributors.

    To build on the TFI Sloan Filmmaker Fund's success and to raise the profile of Sloan screenings, readings, and panels at the Tribeca Film Festival and year-round

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  • grantee: Sundance Institute
    amount: $500,000
    city: Beverly Hills, CA
    year: 2015

    To support a science and technology film program at the nation's pre-eminent independent film center that includes screenwriting fellowships, feature film prizes, science and film panels, and associated outreach

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Michelle Satter

    Funds from this grant provide two years of continued support for the Sundance Institute to promote the production and distribution of high-quality narrative films with scientific or technological themes or characters. The Institute’s efforts, which are primarily centered around the influential Sundance Film Festival, include five separate components: A commissioning fellowship of $25,000 to the screenwriter of a promising early-stage film project to be used to help usher the script toward production. An episodic story fellowship of $10,000 to the scriptwriter of a promising early-stage television project to be used to help usher the project toward completion. A lab fellowship, which allows the director of a science-themed film project to participate in the Sundance Film Festival’s prestigious production lab for up and coming filmmakers. A feature film prize, awarded annually at the Sundance Film Festival for the best science or technology themed film submitted to the festival. A Science-in-Film forum held annually at the Sundance Film Festival that brings independent filmmakers together with working scientists in a moderated panel discussion about the opportunities and challenges posed by incorporating scientific and technological themes into narrative storytelling. Fellowships include year-long support from the Sundance Institute, as well as dedicated stipends to enable filmmakers to hire scientific advisors for their projects.

    To support a science and technology film program at the nation's pre-eminent independent film center that includes screenwriting fellowships, feature film prizes, science and film panels, and associated outreach

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  • grantee: Coolidge Corner Theatre Foundation
    amount: $748,392
    city: Brookline, MA
    year: 2015

    To support the expansion of Coolidge Corner Theatre's Science on Screen program to art house cinemas nationwide

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Katherine Tallman

    Independent and arthouse cinemas participating in the Science on Screen program pair screenings of classic, cult, or documentary films with lively introductions by working scientists who discuss ways in which the film touches on science, technology, engineering, or mathematics.  Past offerings have included a screening of the 1980s slapstick comedy Airplane! paired with a discussion of automation in aviation, a screening of Fight Club paired with a discussion of the psychology of aggression, and a screening of Soylent Green paired with a discussion of the future of the global food supply. The program is headed by Cambridge’s Coolidge Corner Theater (CCT), which promotes the program within the arthouse cinema community, makes suggestions for entertaining film/discussion pairings, and administers small grants to participating theaters to promote screenings and recruit local scientists. In addition, CCT organizes a national “Science on Screen day” when all participating theaters hold coordinated screenings, and gives an annual presentation at the Arthouse Convergence, an industry gathering of more than 600 arthouse and independent cinemas. Funds from this grant provide two years of continued support for the Science on Screen program, including funds to expand the number of participating theaters and improve the program’s web presence.

    To support the expansion of Coolidge Corner Theatre's Science on Screen program to art house cinemas nationwide

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  • grantee: University of Southern California
    amount: $373,612
    city: Los Angeles, CA
    year: 2015

    For screenwriting and production of science and technology films by top film students

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Alan Baker

    Funds from this grant support a program at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts that encourages top film students to write, direct, and produce films with accurate, high-quality scientific content. Grant funds support a number of interrelated activities at USC, including an annual production grant competition, which gives two $22,500 grants to help quality student scripts become films, two $15,000 screenwriting awards given to the best student science-themed scripts, and an annual $17,500 animation award for the best science themed animation produced by a student animator. In addition, USC hosts an annual seminar that introduces students to the program and brings in working scientists to expose students to cutting-edge scientific research and discoveries and an annual screening night where winners’ works are screened. USC also helps facilitate student interaction with industry professionals and the submission of science themed works to film festivals and other dissemination outlets.

    For screenwriting and production of science and technology films by top film students

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  • grantee: University of California, Los Angeles
    amount: $315,100
    city: Los Angeles, CA
    year: 2015

    For screenwriting and production of science and technology films by top film students

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Kathleen McHugh

    This three-year grant provides continuing support for efforts by the University of California, Los Angeles School of Theater, Film, and Television to encourage top film students to write and produce accurate, engaging films about science and technology. The UCLA program includes a yearly $10,000 screenwriting award given to the best student script that explores scientific themes or characters; a yearly $30,000 directing award given toward the production of a dramatic or comedic film about science or technology; and a yearly day-long colloquium that brings working scientists and researchers into the classroom to expose students to exciting new developments in science and introduce them to the narrative possibilities that science and technology offer the aspiring filmmaker. Additional grant funds pair student filmmakers with scientific mentors who advise students on the scientific content of their work and ensure that scripts depict science and the scientific endeavor accurately.

    For screenwriting and production of science and technology films by top film students

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  • grantee: American Film Institute
    amount: $315,000
    city: Los Angeles, CA
    year: 2015

    To encourage the next generation of storytellers to create more realistic and dramatic stories about science and technology, and to challenge stereotypes about scientists and engineers through film

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Joe Petricca

    This grant provides three years of continued support to the American Film Institute’s (AFI) efforts to encourage young screenwriters and filmmakers to write and produce compelling, engaging narrative films that explore scientific themes or have scientists, engineers, or mathematicians as major characters. AFI’s program includes three annual award programs: a $25,000 award given to the best student film project that brings science and technology to life; a $10,000 annual screenwriting award given to the best science-themed script; and a yearly tuition scholarship worth $35,000 given to an incoming filmmaker with a background in the hard sciences who wishes to incorporate scientific themes in his or her filmmaking. In addition, AFI holds a seminar series where established actors, writers, directors, and producers talk to students about science and Hollywood, and provides access to working scientists to serve as mentors on student scripts.

    To encourage the next generation of storytellers to create more realistic and dramatic stories about science and technology, and to challenge stereotypes about scientists and engineers through film

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  • grantee: Tribeca Film Institute
    amount: $208,011
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2015

    To support the Sloan Student Grand Jury Prize administered by the Tribeca Film Institute to the best-of-the-best screenplay from Sloan’s six film school partners

    • Program Public Understanding
    • Sub-program Film
    • Investigator Anna Ponder

    This grant provides two years of funding for the Sloan Student Grand Prize. This annual prize is awarded to the single best student screenplay produced by a student from one of the Foundation’s six film school partners (AFI, Carnegie Mellon, Columbia, NYU, UCLA, and USC) and supports the development of that script into a finished film. The prize stimulates interest and excitement among the participating film schools and film students by awarding a “best-of-the-best” prize and by fast-tracking the winning project for development so it becomes a major career opportunity. The award package is $50,000 per year, of which $30,000 goes directly to the student filmmaker. The remaining $20,000 funds an industry mentor to guide the project, a committed science advisor, and other marketing (meetings, readings, events) and distribution efforts to maximize the screenplay’s chances of production.

    To support the Sloan Student Grand Jury Prize administered by the Tribeca Film Institute to the best-of-the-best screenplay from Sloan’s six film school partners

    More