Dear Mandela Among 25 Documentaries to Receive Grants from Sundance Institute

Dear Mandela Among 25 Documentaries to Receive Grants from Sundance Institute

Dear Mandela

Sundance Institute announced the 25 feature-length documentary films that will receive $550,000 in grants from its Documentary Film Program and Fund (DFP). 

Granted filmmakers reflect a range of experience, including five first-time feature filmmakers as well as noted documentarians Fred Wiseman, Sam Pollard and Jehane Noujaim. In-country filmmakers include those in Africa (Ghana), India and China, and additional countries of production include Afghanistan, Nepal, Senegal and Egypt.


Boomtown (U.S.) 
Director: Beth Murphy 
A modern day Grapes of Wrath story is playing out across America as families pack their bags and head to North Dakota in search of the American Dream.

Bukom Fighter (Ghana) 
Director: Makafui Zimrani 
A nine year old boy from a shanty town in Ghana tries to create hope for himself using the only resource at his disposal; the power of his fists.

Chameleon (Canada / Ghana)
Director: Ryan Mullins 
Africa’s most famed investigative reporter, Anas Aremeyaw Anas, takes us deep undercover for his own brand of brazen journalism.

Perry vs. Schwarzenegger (U.S.)
Directors: Ryan White and Ben Cotner
In 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear a case that challenges California’s ban on same-sex marriage. Perry v. Schwarzenegger, filed by two couples with an unlikely legal team, has now reached the nation’s highest court and is poised to be the first ruling on the right of gay and lesbian Americans to marry.

Rise and Fall of ACORN (U.S.)
Directors: Reuben Atlas and Sam Pollard
In 2009 a national community-organizing group was destroyed. The complex story of ACORN involves a journalist posing as a pimp, embezzlement, and voter fraud.

Sundance Institute Picks 12 Projects for Feature Film Program 2013 January Screenwriters Lab

Sundance Institute Picks 12 Projects for Feature Film Program 2013 January Screenwriters Lab

Sundance Institute has selected 12 projects for its 2013 January Screenwriters Lab, an immersive, five-day (January 11-16) writers’ workshop at the Sundance Resort in Utah. Participating independent screenwriters – drawn from around the world, including the United States, Iran, Europe, Mexico, and Somalia – will have the opportunity to work intensely on their feature film scripts with the support of established writers. The 2013 Lab is dedicated to the memory of Frank Pierson (1925-2012), a founding creative advisor of the Feature Film Program whose body of work and generosity as a mentor served as an inspiration to countless writers.

Keri Putnam, Executive Director of Sundance Institute, said, “Across all Sundance Institute Labs, which include offerings for various forms of artistic expression, the constant is creating an environment that encourages innovation and creative risk-taking. We look forward to building a unique community of artists at our Lab, in support of these emerging screenwriters and their stories.”

Michelle Satter, Founding Director of the Sundance Institute Feature Film Program, said, “We are thrilled to welcome the new group of writers to the Lab whose stories are timely, ambitious and singular in their vision and independent voice. Exploring themes that resonate across cultures, the writers have found diverse and dynamic approaches to storytelling that will inspire and move audiences in the years to come. The January Screenwriters Labs marks the beginning of a rigorous year-round process of creative and tactical support which is tailored to the needs of each individual project and extends from script development to connecting with audiences.”

The Fellows will work with a distinguished group of creative advisors at the Lab, including Marcos Bernstein, D.V. DeVincentis, Michael Goldenberg, Susannah Grant, Walter Mosley, Marti Noxon, Anjum Rajabali, Howard Rodman, David Seidler, Susan Shilliday, Zach Sklar, Dana Stevens, Robin Swicord, Mike White, Tyger Williams and Erin Cressida Wilson.

The projects and Fellows selected for the 2013 January Screenwriters Lab are: