The South Carolina Film Commission and Trident Technical College have opened the next funding cycle for their Indie Grants program. South Carolina writers, filmmakers and other production professionals should submit a script and application before the deadline of June 6. Complete rules, the official application and other information can be found at www.indiegrants.com. Projects selected for funding will be announced in August.
As a film industry training and professional development program, the grant helps provide hands-on experience to the next generation of industry professionals and advancement for South Carolina’s indigenous filmmaking community.
“We take a very practical approach to the program,” said Duane Parrish, Director of the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism, which oversees the South Carolina Film Commission. “Over the last five years we’ve established ways to maximize its value, with a series of South Carolina-positive goals achieved with each short film project.”
“There are invaluable resources at every point in the process,” said writer and 2015 recipient Brad Land of Conway, SC. “The grant and those behind it make it possible for something to exist in ways it otherwise never could. Something that will last, something true…For those things to be born out of a state that is full of ambitious and exciting artistic voices is exciting.”
Land is also the author of the novel Goat, recently adapted into a feature-film starring Ben Schnetzer, Nick Jonas, James Franco and Virginia Gardner, which premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival.
“The process of working with Indie Grants was incredible,” said Joe Worthen of Greenville, another 2015 recipient. “My script was taken through a full professional production schedule including casting, location scouting, shooting and editing. Through the whole process I was allowed to act as producer and creative consultant, and learned so much.”
Selected short film projects will receive production funding and additional professional support to make high-quality independent film projects. These film projects are then used as real-world training exercises for Trident Technical College students, who are employed for each production and work under production professionals. Recent collaborators include Oscar-winning DP Russell Carpenter (Titanic, Ant-Man) and DP Peter Simonite (The Perfect Guy, Skateland, Tree of Life [2nd Unit DP]).
“Industry crew positions are high-paying jobs, with production projects bringing in dollars across the state,” said Parrish. “The best way for South Carolinians to become qualified for these jobs is to learn them in an actual set environment.”
“The grant program is so necessary, and the art it allows to be possible is exciting, challenging and, often times, breathtaking,” said Land. “I have grown in ways I would’ve never thought possible. And that has been entirely made possible by the Indie Grants program.”
MORE ABOUT INDIE GRANTS
In the summer of 2010, the South Carolina Film Commission, in association with Trident Technical College, founded the Indie Grants. Awarding small production grants for selected South Carolina filmmakers, the program is designed to provide South Carolina independent filmmakers with resources that will add quality and creativity to their short-film projects, resulting in industry exposure for the state’s film community and training the next generation of South Carolina crew.
All funded filmmakers are required to use Trident Technical College film students in their crews. Other resources provided to Indie Grant filmmakers throughout the process include equipment, mentoring, professional script consulting, professional crew calls, collaborative critiques, and film festival consulting.
The program has resulted in a high-quality, intriguing collection of short films; South Carolina cinematic skills and stories celebrated by the world. Official film festival selections and awards include the 2012 Sundance Film Festival Audience Award, Palm Springs Film Festival, Austin Film Festival, DragonCon, Stiges Film Festival, LA Film Fest, Toronto AfterDark, Mediera Film Festival, Cleveland International Film Festival, Charleston International Film Festival and Santa Rosa International Film Festival.
Accompanying the Indie Grant program is a series of production training workshops from the South Carolina Film Commission, on topics such as Scriptwriting, Aerial Lift (Condor) Certification, Production Legal, Cinematography, Digital Effects & Motion Graphics, MovieMagic, Production Design and more.