We are excited to announce that Firelight Media is launching their first ever open call for submissions for the Documentary Lab! The Documentary Lab is an 18-month fellowship program that supports filmmakers from racially and ethnically underrepresented communities working on their first or second feature length documentary film. The Lab provides filmmakers with customized mentorship from prominent leaders in the documentary world, funding, professional development workshops and networking opportunities. The deadline to apply is July 14th and here is the link to the application.
Founded by MacArthur “Genius” Fellow Stanley Nelson and Marcia Smith, Firelight is best known for producing award-winning films like The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution, Freedom Riders, and The Murder of Emmett Till. Firelight tells stories about pivotal moments and movements in American history. Firelight’s flagship programs – the Documentary Lab and Impact Producer Fellowship – support diverse documentary filmmakers and impact producers that advance underrepresented stories, moving them from the margins to the forefront of mainstream media through high quality, powerful films and campaigns.
Director of Memories of a Penitent Heart, Cecilia Aldarondo, says: “Firelight was one of the first supporters to take a risk on me. When I came to the Documentary Lab, I was a first-time filmmaker with no credibility trying to pull off a personal film with an unconventional approach. The Lab provided me rigorous feedback, gave me an emergency grant when I needed it most, and helped me gain the support of the same decision-makers I’d previously been unsuccessful with. Firelight took me into their family. And now I have a finished film that has exceeded my expectations. I can’t say enough how grateful I am.”