Contest: Win and Get Paid to Make Film in NYC

(released 1/28/2024)

The Downtown Alliance has put out a call for short filmmakers. One filmmaker will be given up to $50,000, two months in a paid luxury Mint House Apartment and two months stipend to produce, direct and edit a short film in New York City's Lower Manhattan neighborhood. One main requirement is the short film must feature Lower Manhattan, whether as a backdrop for a dramatic short, the subject of a documentary or simply a (visible) source of inspiration. You'll show them how you plan to feature Lower Manhattan in your submitted film treatment. Otherwise, you have full creative license to create a film that falls within a PG-13 rating, and any genre and style is welcome.

Note: they're not looking for a promotional video for the neighborhood. Life in Lower Manhattan is already like living on a film set, a setting to some of the world's most famous films. They just want a short film that continues that legacy, and that Lower Manhattan features nicely.

The neighborhood's one square mile is filled with dramatic streetscapes, steeped in rich history — a unique and deeply cinematic set of inspirations for moviemakers.

Overview of prize details

The winner gets:
  • A $50,000 grant to create a short film on location in Lower Manhattan.
  • Two months of living rent-free at a luxury apartment at a local Mint House property
  • A $2000 monthly stipend to cover living expenses
  • Access to a professional editing suite
  • Time for pre-production, filming and editing while residing in Lower Manhattan.
Submission requirements:
  • You are 18 or older and legally able to work in the US.
  • You have already made one short film and have experience finishing a film.
  • You are available for two consecutive months between July and September 2024.
  • You possess the creative leadership skills to manage a film budget and crew.
They're looking for talent and passion, not formalities. Formal film school training or SAG-AFTRA membership is not required. This opportunity is open to you!

To enter:
  • Create a one-minute video uploaded to YouTube explaining why you should be their Filmmaker in Chief.
  • Submit a 3-5 page film treatment outlining your unique concept and links to samples of your past completed films.
  • Your short film can run between 8-40 minutes, with the sweet spot between 8-15 minutes.
Submissions are open at from January 16 – February 16, 2024.

You can read more and find the details here: 

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