This program is for trans, gender nonconforming, and/or non-binary filmmakers based in the United States who are in active development to direct their first or second feature length film. We welcome scripted and unscripted projects in any phase of development.

This program is by invitation only. Filmmakers are nominated by a culturally abundant network of trusted filmmakers, collaborators, peers, programmers, mentors, and representatives of partner organizations. Nominated filmmakers will be asked to answer a brief series of questions about themselves and their work. Please contact us for an accessible accommodation.
The application features three brief essay questions: 1) About You, 2) About Your Project, and 3) About Your Intent. Answers to each of these questions do not need to be longer than a paragraph, but you may use the space as you wish to help us understand who you are. We hope to understand your unique artistic voice and vision, how your lived experience influences your creativity, and how you hope to grow through and beyond this fellowship. The project you wish to work on during the fellowship can be at any stage of development, from initial brainstorm to post-production, and may be scripted or unscripted. Consider where you need support in continuing to grow your project, and what next steps you would like help and insight on during the program. There is an option to share your past creative work. This may be anything that you feel helps reflect your artistic vision: websites, reels, trailers, clips, pitch decks, brainstorms, social media, etc. If you have no tangible work to share, you may describe any past work, or leave this question blank. The application is intended to provide a picture of who you are as a person and an artist, and does not need to be a polished or perfect creation. If you have never applied to a fellowship before or would like additional guidance or accessibility accommodations, feel free to reach out to us.

Nominations take place in May with applications due May 26th. Selected fellows will be notified by May 31st. Fellows will be invited to attend the Bentonville Film Festival in person June 13th-18th. The onnline weekend intensive will be held on June 17th-18th, and subsequent online meetings between mentors and Fellows will occur July-September 2023.

Applicants should self-identify as trans, nonbinary, and/or gender diverse, be based in the United States, and have a strong desire to direct long-form content such as scripted or unscripted feature films and television series. This program will be most beneficial for directors who have enough initial experience to know they are dedicated to a career directing long-form content, but are early enough in their careers that mentorship will significantly impact their development.

We will be matching Mentors and Fellows based on their shared backgrounds, experiences, and interests. In the final phase of the selection process, Mentors will ultimately have the option to make the final decision as to who their Fellow will be. This ensures that the Mentor has a vested interest in the Fellow and they will work together closely.

Participants will meet virtually with their Mentor for a minimum of three times between July and September, for a total of at least three hours. We will connect you during the weekend intensive in late June, and following meetings will be scheduled independently and mutually agreed upon between the Fellow and Mentor.

This is a three month program, running from June-September. It will kick off with a weekend intensive in June 2023, followed by monthly meetings between the Mentor/Fellow pairs and the group of Fellows through September 2023.

Feel free to contact us with additional questions or feedback. Thanks!