The Filmmakers Assistance Program (FAP) offers developing independent filmmakers an opportunity to receive financial support for their productions. In addition to this support, the FAP also provides an ideal avenue for emerging filmmakers to develop a profile and relationship with the NFB.
The Filmmaker Assistance Program has a firm cut-off for spending the awarded funds by March 31 of the following year due to our fiscal year-end. If you are still working to finalize the financing for your film, and are applying to funders who have deadlines in the fall of the year, please consider applying for our program next year. Preference will be given to applications with confirmed sources of financing.
The 2023 BC & Yukon Studio FAP application period is now closed. Please check back in late 2023 or early 2024 for updates on applying for the next round of funding.
Table of Contents
Are you eligible?
- If you have received assistance from FAP in the past for a project you directed, you are not eligible to apply again.
- Applicants must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents.
- Applications will be accepted from BC and Yukon residents only.
- Applicants must be the director of the film, and only one application/film may be submitted per director.
- Applicants currently enrolled in a film school program are not eligible.
- Applications must be for films to be directed by an emerging filmmaker who has made no more than four films or video projects (not including student films).
- Films must have completed their development phase and be ready for production, or already in post.
- Films will be selected based on the production’s relevance to the NFB’s cultural and social objectives. You can find detailed information about the considerations that influence the NFB’s programming decisions at: Propose a Project
- Neither the Filmmaker nor the Production, as represented by any other party, is eligible for assistance or funding for any other cinematographic work at the NFB while a FAP Agreement is in effect.
- Documentaries, short dramas, animation, and experimental films are eligible under this program.
How FAP works
- FAP assistance will be limited to a maximum of $5,000 (plus GST/HST).
- NFB investment is disbursed through the direct payment of third- party invoices on behalf of the Filmmaker for the Production. Third-party suppliers must invoice the NFB directly for NFB-approved expenses. Payment shall in no case be made directly to the Filmmaker. Invoices and suppliers must be approved by the studio administrator.
- The FAP funding must be committed by March 1, and spent before March 31 of the year following the date funding is awarded.
- FAP funding cannot be deferred to the following fiscal year. Any funds not spent by March 31 will be forfeited.
- The NFB investment provided under this Agreement shall be used solely for approved production and post-production expenses (including but not limited to equipment rentals, and post-production facilities).
- Ineligible costs include, but are not limited to, equipment purchase or offsetting of capital costs, self-rentals, rights clearance costs, travel, festival fees, duplication, and labour expenses (including payments for services rendered on the production by the Filmmaker, Editor, Cinematographer, and other personnel), as well as costs incurred before the application deadline.
- Copyright in the Production shall remain with the Filmmaker, however Filmmaker accepts that in exchange for the NFB investment, the Filmmaker grants a non-exclusive license allowing the NFB, at its discretion, to distribute the Production worldwide solely for non-commercial purposes (when no fee is charged to a viewer) through any NFB-owned websites in perpetuity starting at the latest within 18 months after either of the first television broadcast, the first theatrical and/or first festival showing of the Production.
How to apply
Submissions are accepted at either the production or post-production phase. Applications must be submitted by the Director of the project.
Complete the ONLINE APPLICATION FORM.
All personal information collected by the NFB using the NFB Filmmaker Assistant Program (FAP) Application Form will be used for the purposes of identifying and communicating with applicants and for administering the Program. The names of the applicants as well as the details of the applications will be shared with the internal selection committee which may include one or more private sector industry professionals. All personal information collected by the National Film Board of Canada is protected by the Privacy Act. You have the right to access your personal information under the Act at any time, as well as the right to file a complaint with the Privacy Commissioner of Canada regarding the handling of your personal information.
- Please note, the online form cannot be saved as a work-in-progress, though as long as the browser window remains open it shouldn’t time-out. However, in order to help you prepare your information before getting started, the following is a list of the questions in the application form.
- There are character limits for individual fields in the application form, as well as for the form overall. Text fields have a limit of 4,000 characters. The larger boxes will expand to display all the text, but the smaller boxes won’t. The entire application form has a limit of 16,000 characters for all questions combined. If you encounter any text limits you can instead include a link to a document or documents in the answer field, or you can send them by email as an attachment.
For materials submitted by email, please send to Nathan Conchie
PART 1: THE FACTS – This section includes the following:
- your contact details
- a brief description of your film
- the genre, length, and estimated completion date
- how you plan to spend the FAP funds
- total budget and how much FAP you’re requesting*
- financing plan**
- current schedule***
*Please provide your complete production budget as a downloadable file, either via a link or as an attachment in an email. The format must be the Telefilm Budget Template, which can be found here: Telefilm Canada
**Priority will be given to applications with complete financing structures. Please include ALL sources, including any you will be applying for in the future, and note anticipated confirmation dates.
***Projects not planning to shoot until the fall should consider waiting until next year to apply for post-production funds.
PART 2: TELL US ABOUT YOU – In this section we’d like to hear all about you:
- your biography
- systemic barriers or challenges you’ve faced
- opportunities or privileges that influenced your career
- what stories do you want to tell in film and why?
- your filmography
- links to your previous work
PART 3: TELL US ABOUT YOUR FILM – The final section is for you to tell us all about your film:
- your vision for the film and why it’s important to you
- the script and/or treatment (please submit via link or as an email attachment)
- synopsis or one-pager
- a mood board and/or visual references (optional*)
- links to existing material for your project (optional*)
- your key creative team
- and anything else you’d like to share!
*Submitting creative materials is optional, as noted above, however highly recommended.
PART 4: HOW TO SUBMIT MATERIALS
You can provide your information in two ways. Either use the fields in the online form or include a link to materials stored in the cloud (like Dropbox, Google Drive, Vimeo, etc.). If sending links to cloud documents, please ensure they do not expire, and provide passwords if applicable. You can also send information as attachments in an email, but please be mindful of file sizes. We recommend delivering in well-known and multi-platform formats such as PDF, Word, Excel, JPEG, PNG, or Quicktime movie files (e.g. Apple Number spreadsheets can be exported as Excel).
- The deadline for submission is April 15, 2023 at 11:59PM PST.
- Applications will be reviewed by a selection committee that is comprised of members of the NFB BC & Yukon Studio and previous FAP recipients.
- The review process will be completed by the end of May and successful applicants will be notified by mid-June.
- A Letter of Agreement with the NFB, detailing the terms and conditions of the assistance, must be signed by the filmmaker prior to receiving any assistance from FAP.
- Prior to signing the Letter of Agreement, the filmmaker agrees to an in-person, video conferencing meeting, or telephone call with members of the BC & Yukon Studio to review the administrative process of the FAP.