Submissions for the 2015 Rooftop Filmmakers Fund are now closed. Applicants will be notified in early December, 2015.

Rooftop Films Filmmakers Fund Grants are only open to filmmakers whose work has screened previously as part of a Rooftop Films Summer Series event. Unfortunately, if you have not screened a film with Rooftop Films in the past, you are not eligible to apply for our grants. If you would like to submit your film, head to our submission page.

Rooftop Films not only exhibits films from around the world, we also support the filmmakers whose work we have screened to help them to produce new movies through the Rooftop Filmmakers' Fund.

At our annual Summer Series, Rooftop Films sets aside $1 from every ticket sold and every submission fee received and gives it to alumni filmmakers in the form of grants for their film productions. Only filmmakers who have screened a movie at Rooftop Films' festival are eligible for grants. We also grant additional cash courtesy of our sponsor GarboNYC, and service grants courtesy of our sponsors at Eastern Effects , Edgeworx Studios, Brigade Marketing, Technological Cinevideo Services, and Downtown Community Television.

Unlike festivals which give away awards for filmmakers' past work, the Rooftop Filmmakers Fund is an opportunity to help deserving filmmakers make their next movie. We've been screening films since 1997, and every filmmaker who has ever shown a film with Rooftop is eligible for our grants—now over 2,500 artists. Past grantees have included Gillian Robespierre’s Obvious Child , Jonas Carpignano’s Mediterranea, Ana Lily Amirpour’s The Bad Batch, David Lowery's Ain't Them Bodies Saints, Shaka King’s Newlyweeds, Sean Durkin’s Martha Marcy May Marlene, Benh Zeitlin's and Glory at Sea, Johannes Nyholm’s Las Palmas , Lucy Walker's The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom, and dozens more. Read more about past grantees here.

Rooftop Films has nine grants available —six for feature length films and three for short films. In 2015, Rooftop Films will give away over $35,000 in cash grants, including $25,000 in cash grants from GarboNYC that will be awarded to feature filmmakers, as well as equipment and service grants valued at more than $100,000.

The 2015 Rooftop Filmmakers Fund Grants Are:

Feature Film Grants:

The Rooftop Filmmakers Fund Feature Grant, Sponsored by GarboNYC


About the grant:As proud supporters of Rooftop Films, GarboNYC has made $25,000 available in cash grants for one or two feature-length films to provide funding for key cast and crew.

About GarboNYC: GarboNYC is a transgressive clothing company that was created by stylist Anett Gabriel, who had a desire to pay tribute to working class women and their sacrifices during the westernization of Hungary. Originally designed as utility footwear, used by nurses and waitresses during the socialist era, GarboNYC became a brand that reclaims and reimagines utilitarian wear for the independent woman. Each product is carefully made, in capsule releases on an anti-fashion calendar, in ways that uphold living wages and working conditions, employing the original plant in Hungary.

Rooftop Films and Brigade Marketing Festival Publicity Grant

About the grant:Brigade will offer one feature-length film full publicity services for the film's North American premiere. (Valued at $15,000 in services)

About Brigade Marketing: Brigade knows that audiences are constantly evolving, so they stay a step ahead by pushing beyond the basic publicity and marketing model. Their cutting-edge campaigns generate buzz and demand attention by engaging with core consumers on every level. In short, they get it. Brigade's seasoned, peerless team of client and agency players knows how to break through the clutter of entertainment promotion with unparalleled industry expertise, innovation, creative capabilities and account service. Brigade brings entertainment brands and their audiences together.

Rooftop Films and Eastern Effects Equipment Grant


About the grant:Eastern Effects will award 30 days of lighting and grip equipment to one feature-length film.

About Eastern Effects:Eastern Effects is film production rental house based in Brooklyn. Since 1999, Eastern Effects has been providing Lighting & Grip Equipment Rentals for Independent Feature Films, Television Productions, Corporate & Industrial Videos, Student Filmmakers, and Live Broadcast.

Rooftop Films Technological Cinevideo Services Camera Grant

About the grant:TCS will award 21 days of high-quality camera and lens equipment for one feature-length film.

About TCS:Technological Cinevideo Services has been the rental home for world-famous professional motion picture equipment for more than 30 years.

Rooftop Films and Edgeworx Post-Production Grant

About the grant:For this grant, Edgeworx will provide 1-2 weeks of post-production services to one feature-length film.

About Edgeworx Studios: Edgeworx Studios is an award winning post-production house based in Manhattan. With a sixteen-year track record, Edgeworx provides full service production and post-production. Their areas of expertise include motion graphic design, animation, VFX, editorial and finishing.

Rooftop Films / DCTV Color Correction Feature Film Grant

About the grant:The DCTV Color Correction Grant will provide up to ten days in DCTV's HDCAM Mastering Suite (Edit Suite B). Details about the suite are available on DCTV's website here.

About DCTV: DCTV Equipment Rentals is one of the only rental houses that does not require production insurance and is open 7 days a week, striving to make otherwise expensive pro camera, lighting and audio gear accessible. DCTV Workshops provide over 200 hands-on workshops in video production, post-production, producing, and graphic & web design each year, taught by working industry professionals in an intimate and interactive environment.

Short Film Grants:

Rooftop Filmmakers’ Fund Short Film Grants

Rooftop Films Logo

For the Rooftop Filmmakers’ Fund Short Film Grant, we will award grants ranging from $500-3,000 to male and female filmmakers. We will give grants to 3-6 projects, totaling $7,874. 

Rooftop Films / Adrienne Shelly Foundation Short Film Grant for Women

Adrienne Shelly Foundation Logo

About the grant: For this grant, ASF will award one $3,000 grant to a female director.

About ASF: The Adrienne Shelly Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated in loving memory to the uniquely gifted actor and filmmaker Adrienne Shelly, whose highly accomplished life was tragically cut short November 1, 2006. ASF supports the artistic achievements of female actors, writers and directors through a series of scholarships and grants, providing recipients with financial support and consultative access to the Foundation's advisory board of actors, directors, producers, composers, law, publicity, academic and trade professionals. Reflecting Adrienne's spirit, generosity, courage and whimsy, its goal is to recognize the passion and commitment of women artists in creating their work, and provide them with support and guidance during periods of transition and struggle.

Rooftop Films / DCTV Equipment & Services Grant


About the grant: DCTV will provide $5,000 credits to two separate filmmakers for DCTV equipment, services or classes. Available gear includes cameras, lights, sound recording.

About DCTV: Founded in 1972, DCTV is an established media arts resource for NYC’s independent filmmaking community. DCTV provides affordable workshops, production equipment rentals, post-production facilities, a signature screening series, renowned youth programming, and more – all under the same roof as its award-winning documentary production house. DCTV Equipment Rentals is one of the only rental houses that does not require production insurance and is open 7 days a week, striving to make otherwise expensive pro camera, lighting and audio gear accessible. DCTV Workshops provide over 200 hands-on workshops in video production, post-production, producing, and graphic & web design each year, taught by industry professionals in an intimate and interactive environment.

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About Rooftop Films

Rooftop Films is a New York based non-profit whose mission is to engage diverse communities by showing independent movies in outdoor locations, producing new films, coordinating youth media education, and renting equipment at low cost to artists.