Rooftop Films works with our partners to help future productions by filmmakers whose work has screened at our festival. Only filmmakers who have screened a film at Rooftop's festival are eligible for grants. In the Summer 2012 round we have four grants for artists making short films and three grants for feature-length films. Click here for short film guidelines.

The deadline for 2013 grants has passed. The next round of grants will be in the summer of 2014. Please check back for updates. 

The four partners and grants are:

AT&T is the presenting sponsor of Rooftop Films 2013 Summer Series, and will be sponsoring the AT&T Feature Film Grant. “AT&T is thrilled to support independent artists with this Rooftop filmmaker grant,” said Marissa Shorenstein, President, AT&T New York. “Filmmaking is important to New York both culturally and economically and our commitment has exttended even further by presenting Rooftop's 2012 Summer Series whichdea builds audiences for the independent and emerging artists who are essential to making New York the culturally rich place that it is.”


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 Post provides independent filmmakers edit, color correction, and mastering suites with the highest quality service at the lowest possible cost.

Eastern EffectsSince 1999, Brooklyn-based Eastern Effects has been providing Lighting & Grip Equipment rentals for Independent Feature Films, Television Productions, Corporate & Industrial Videos, Student filmmakers, and Live Broadcast. In 2012, they opened Easter Effects Studios and now offer NYS LEvel 2 Qualifiied sound stages, production offices, and support services to the film community. Their mission is to provide customer service that exceeds our customer’s expectations, to deliver equipment of only the highest quality to satisfy the demanding needs of our customers, and to sustain a business founded on reliability, personal values, and good communication. 

Edgeworx StudiosEdgeworx Studios is a post-production house based in Manhattan. With a fifteen year track record, Edgeworx provides full service production and post-production. Their areas of expertise include motion graphic design, animation, VFX, editorial and finishing. By fusing innovative ideas with technical savvy, Edgeworx has built an impressive roster of clients including, HBO, NBC, Bravo, Nova, ABC, Disney, Focus Features, USA Films, PBS Roadside Attractions, Discovery Channel, MTV, ESPN, A&E, BBC, Magnolia Pictures, IFC, Killer Films, Partizan Entertainment, ThinkFilm and New Line Cinema. From concept to execution, Edgeworx produces original, high-end design for a diverse range of creative projects. 

Who is eligible? (important) 
What is the history of the grant?

Other frequenly asked questions and advice. (Please read!)

This $10,000 cash grant will be given to one Rooftop alumni filmmaker, awarded for a critical stage in their production of a new, independent feature film.

For this grant, DCTV will provide our color correction/mastering suite for one film for up to 12 days.

Rooftop Films is working with our partners at Eastern Effects to provide 30 days of lighting and grip equipment to one feature-length film (over 50 minutes long). 

What we have: 
2 Ton Lighting and Grip Easy Gear™ Package (no vehicle) from Eastern Effects for 30 days. 
A complete package equipment list please is available here. Some substitutions and special requests are possible. Eastern Effects will work with you to fill your needs within the range of the equivalent cost of the package. The equipment must be picked up in Brooklyn, but can be used anywhere. Filmmakers must provide standard production insurance. Email Rooftop Films Artistic Director Mark Elijah Rosenberg at filmfund [at] rooftopfilms [dot] com if you have further questions.

Rooftop Films is working with our partners at Edgeworx Inc. to provide a post-production package to one feature-length film (over 50 minutes long). 

What we have:
Approximately 1-2 weeks of post production work valuing up to $10,000. The Edgeworx staff will work with you to fill your needs within the range of the equivalent cost of the package. This package may include a combination of the following: VFX, animation, titles and simple 2D graphics, and more. For more details, please visit or email Rooftop Films Artistic Director Mark Elijah Rosenberg at filmfund [at] rooftopfilms [dot] com. 

We are open to any genre or type of film, but in our choosing of grantees, we are biased toward: 
• People who convince us they will actually produce another movie with these resources.
• People who do not have access to other resources.
• People who make the kind of movies that we don’t see enough of (see below).
• People who use money and materials sparingly and wisely.
• Films are encouraged to request support from all four grants (Eastern Effects, Edgeworx, DCTV and AT&T), but it is unlikely that the same film will receive support through more than one grant. If only one service is applicable to your production, please specify which one. If you are interested in receiving any of the grants, please explain how each service would help your production. 

Films we don’t see enough of: 
• Intelligent political films: whether documentaries or fiction, drama or comedy, experimental or animation, we see a dearth of thoughtful, well-researched, well-reasoned movies that actively seek to change our world for the better.
• Films with women and people of color in primary production roles.
• (These are NOT requirements, just qualities we value. We fund many films that do not fall into those categories, from comedies to experimental films, films with large budgets and small. If it's moving pictures by our alums, and it's going to be great, we want to support it.)

Crucial elements: 
• We need to be convinced that you will make this film as it as presented and in a timely fashion—within 18 months. If you can provide a production schedule and convincing reasons as to why you will adhere to it, that’s great. 
• We are more likely to fund films for which we will have a large impact. That is, we are more likely to fund a film which can do all the shooting and lighting with this package than a film for which use of this package will be only a small portion of the production. 
• We are more likely to award films that make the most of their resources and community. That is, we are more likely to fund films that have creative, independent funding resources than films with a single corporate funder. 

Please read our FAQ and ADVICE section. In addition, all filmmakers are encouraged to email Rooftop Artistic Director Mark Elijah Rosenberg at filmfund [at] rooftopfilms [dot] com with a draft of their application for advice, or call 718-417-7362. When asking for advice, please focus on specific questions. We can only really advise how to make your application more clear, or offer personal non-binding advice on the filmmaking. The advice we most often give is to descibe what we will see on screen more clearly. Due to time constraints, we can only provide one round of notes, and cannot guarantee feedback in the final week before the deadline, but simple questions are welcome any time. 

Selection Process:
Filmmakers must first submit an initial proposal—a simple, short description of their project (no more than 3 pages; 1 page is great.) The Rooftop Films staff will read all the proposals and invite certain projects submit a more full proposal, which may include a script or detailed treatment, a detailed budget, a production plan/schedule, and more. At the end of the second round, the Rooftop Films, Eastern Effects and/or Edgeworx staffs will determine which projects to support, and we will work together to establish a schedule and set other logistics. 

The Application:
• Download the application and the budget form for the Rooftop Films Feature-Length Film Grants (the same application applies to all grants). 

The application asks for the following information: 
• Your name and contact information.
• A description of the film you want to make.
• A rough cut or test footage (if you have such).
• A production and/or post-production plan.
• What you want from Rooftop, AT&T, DCTV, Eastern Effects, Edgeworx Studios.
• A rough budget. (Use our form or your own.)
• A few lines about yourself.

Please keep in mind that this application is merely an initial proposal. At this stage, we do not want more than basic details, a rough budget, and no more than 3 pages about the film. 1 page is great. Selected projects will be invited to submit a more complete proposal, including a full script or treatment. 

Returning the Application:
1. If you plan on applying, please email filmfund [at] rooftopfilms [dot] com to RSVP, so we know how many applications we might be expecting and we can keep an eye out for your application. Let us know in the email if you are applying for a short film or a feature length film. 

2. When you have completed the application, upload the form, budget, and any additional materials to a Google Drive folder.

   2.1. If you do not already have Google Drive, it is a simple to use and free application. Visit to set up an account for yourself. If you have problems doing so, email filmfund [at] rooftopfilms [dot] com.

3. Title the folder in the following format: FF13 Short / Feature – First Name Last Name.

   3.1. Use “Short” if your film is less than 50 minutes and you are applying for a short film grant; use “Feature” if your film is over 50 minutes and you are applying for a feature film grant.

   3.2. If you are applying with more than one film, make separate folders for each film, and add a number and the title of the film at the end. Ex: FF13 Feature - Mark Rosenberg 1 The History of Rooftop ... FF13 Feature - Mark Rosenberg 2 Behind The Scenes at Rooftop.

4. Share the folder with rooftopfilmfund [at] gmail [dot] com. [Please note that this address is ONLY for uploads. DO NOT email that address for correspondence.]

   4.1. To share the folder, in, simply right click on the folder and click “Share”

   4.2. In the “Add People” field, type: rooftopfilmfund [at] gmail [dot] com

   4.3. Leave the default settings for “Can edit” and “Notify people via email.”

5. Changes made to the folder after the deadline (July 9, 2013) will not be seen by the Rooftop panel.

6. Be sure to keep the folder online until after the grant notifications are made (end of September, 2013).

7. You are also welcome and encouraged to send footage, rough cuts, fine cuts, etc. in any format. Online links are preferred (password protection is acceptable), or files placed in Google Drive. Alternately, you can send 1 DVD to:

Rooftop Films
Attn: Filmmakers’ Fund
PMB 401 / 285 5th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11215

• Initial applications must be received by 11:59pm on July 9, 2013.
• Some applicants will be notified about the 2nd round of the application. Applicants will need to complete the 2nd round application by July 23, 2013.
• All applicants will be notified about the status of their application by September 16, 2013.

Please note: not all applicants will be asked to submit further information for a 2nd round. If you are not asked, this does not mean your film was eliminated. 

Payments / Reporting:
If you are awarded a grant, you will be expected to file one simple progress report and one simple completion report, which we will send to you at the appropriate times. You will need to sign a grant contract before receiving support. You can read a full copy of the contract here. The key provisions are:

• The filmmaker must produce the film as outlined, to the best of their ability.
• The filmmaker must produce the film within 18 months of the grant award.
• Funds and services will not allocated immediately, but for specific services as needed.
• The filmmaker must allow Rooftop Films the right to screen the film within 12 months of the official world premiere, before theatrical or TV release and preferably before any New York screenings.
• The awarded applicants will work with Rooftop Films, and either Eastern Effects, Edgeworx or DCTV to determine a specific production schedule and you will be expected to complete your project on schedule.

Good luck! We’re excited to hear about your films, and to help them get made and get screened on the roof. 

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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.