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Arts, Sports & Culture

Local Filmmakers Vie for Grants; Community Input Sought

Thirty-five filmmakers have submitted their projects for a chance at a $10,000 grant from the Sprout Fund, a nonprofit funding organization.

The films are community-based projects in the form of short- or feature-length films, documentaries, online videos or multimedia experiences.

“There is some fictional narrative, feature pieces, there’s a lot of community-based documentary, some of those focusing on the arts community, some of them focusing on individual neighborhoods or communities within the larger community of the region or the city,” said Ryan Coon, program officer with the Sprout Fund.

The public is invited to view and vote on the submissions, and feedback will be taken into account in awarding grants, along with some other criteria.

“Feasibility, whether this thing is likely to be pulled off or not,” Coon said. “The innovative or unique aspects of the project — is this something that is new and exciting and has never been tried before? Or is it a new approach to an old problem or an old challenge? Then more nuts and bolts things like do they have a good implementation plan and a good distribution plan?”

Four projects will receive $10,000 grants and popular videos that don’t receive grants will be eligible for small honoraria. In addition to grant money, the winners will receive support for their projects.

“Sprout’s working in close partnership with Pittsburgh filmmakers on this project,” Coon said. “They’re our partners not only in viewing and collecting these submissions, but they’ll be offering technical consultation and support to projects that receive funding.

The public can vote for the submissions online until 10 p.m. Dec. 2. Coon said the winners are expected to be announced by Dec. 20.