San Francisco Film Society and Kenneth Rainin Foundation Announce Finalists for Fall 2011 SFFS/KRF Filmmaking Grants

Ten Narrative Feature Projects with Social Justice Themes in Contention for More Than $305,000, Winners to Be Announced in December


San Francisco Film Society and Kenneth Rainin Foundation announce the ten finalists for the sixth round of SFFS/KRF Filmmaking Grants of more than $305,000, to be given to one or more feature films that through plot, character, theme or setting significantly explore human and civil rights, discrimination, gender and sexual identity and other urgent social justice issues of our time. Additionally, the grants support films that have a significant economic or professional impact on the Bay Area filmmaking community. The total amount to be disbursed from 2009 to 2013 will be nearly $2.5 million, including a total of $788,000 already awarded in the first five grant rounds. Winners of the fall 2011 SFFS/KRF Grants will be announced in mid-December. 

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Maris Curran: 
Five Nights in Maine, development
Unexpected tragedy brings an African American widower face-to-face with his estranged mother-in-law in rural Maine. For more information visit

Jenny Deller, Kristin Fairweather: 
Future Weather, postproduction
When her single mom runs away to California, a passionate young environmentalist clings to her rural home and a carbon sequestration experiment. Her grandmother, a caustic nurse on the verge of moving in with her long-distance boyfriend, has other plans. Thrust into each other's lives, the two relatives must learn to trust each other and leap into the unknown. For more information visit

Lance Edmands, Kyle Martin: Bluebird, production 
In the frozen woods of an isolated Maine logging town, one woman's tragic mistake shatters the community balance, resulting in profound and unexpected consequences.

Eric Escobar: One Good Thing, development
A jaded and bitter locksmith spends his days locking families out of their foreclosed homes. When a morning lockout turns up the abandoned children of a long-lost friend, his cynicism is put in check as he races to find the missing parents. For more information visit

Krisy Gosney: Manhandled, development
Set in the gritty, pre-dot-com Mission District of San Francisco, a lesbian couple's world implodes as one of them transitions to male, testing the limits of unconditional love and their new identity as a straight couple.

Ian Hendrie, Jyson McLean: Mercy Road, screenwriting
Based on true events, Mercy Road traces the political and spiritual odyssey of a small town Christian housewife as she slowly turns from a peaceful pro-life activist to an underground militant willing to commit violence and murder in the name of God.

Chris Mason Johnson: Test, production
In 1985, while lurid newspaper headlines threaten a gay quarantine and antigay graffiti appears regularly, the naïve and frequently bullied new member of San Francisco's contemporary ballet company begins a friendship with a brilliant lead dancer with a bad-boy reputation. The friends navigate a world alternately full of risk and promise. For more information visit

Oden Roberts, Azura Skye: Rosie Got Her Gun, production
Following a series of arrests, a troubled young woman struggling to avoid prison time is visited by an opportunistic Army recruiter. For more information visit

Alex Smith, Andrew Smith: 
Winter in the Blood, postproduction
Virgil First Raise embarks on a surreal and comedic odyssey to retrieve his renegade wife and the treasured rifle that she stole from him. For more information visit

Jessica Tanzer Conroy, Marianna Cherry: Read My Lips, screenwriting
In 1989 in San Francisco, as the AIDS epidemic breeds a new generation of activists, a struggling young artist on a journey of self-discovery becomes an unwitting hero of the cause.

The SFFS/KRF Filmmaking Grants support work by local filmmakers as well as attract projects of the highest quality to the Bay Area, providing tangible encouragement and support to meaningful projects and benefiting the local economy. In addition to a cash grant, recipients will receive various benefits through the Film Society's comprehensive and dynamic filmmaker services programs. 

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Kenneth Rainin Foundation is a private family foundation that funds inspiring and world-changing work. We are dedicated to enhancing quality of life by promoting equitable access to a baseline of literacy, enabling inspiration through the arts and supporting research that will lead to relief for those with chronic disease. The Foundation will focus its efforts on the San Francisco Bay Area and specific medical issues and will utilize its networks, resources, and commitment to socially responsible practices to support innovation, collaboration and connection.