SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants

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The SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants 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. 

Awards are made to multiple projects twice a year, in the spring and fall for development and post-production. Grants support meaningful projects that benefit the Bay Area filmmaking community in a professional and economic capacity.

The program is open to filmmakers in the US and internationally who can commit to spending time developing the work in San Francisco. Priority is given to Bay AreaSF-based filmmakers.

In addition to the cash grants, recipients receive various benefits through SFFILM's comprehensive and dynamic artist development programs, including a 6 month residency at FilmHouse.  

Since 2009, the SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants program has funded more than 50 film projects, including: Geremy Jasper’s Patti Cake$, Jonas Carpignano’s Mediterranea, Chloé Zhao’s Songs My Brothers Taught Me, Destin Cretton’s Short Term 12, Ryan Coogler’s Fruitvale Station, and Benh Zeitlin’s Beasts of the Southern Wild. Films have premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, Sundance Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival, South by Southwest and the Tribeca Film Festival. Learn more about the Kenneth Rainin Foundation.