CrossCurrents Doc Fund

CrossCurrents Doc Fund

The CrossCurrents Doc Fund is an international production fund that fosters storytelling from within communities whose perspectives have been historically underrepresented or marginalized.

The Fund supports filmmakers from within these communities, especially emerging talent, who can illustrate a relationship between their film’s subject and their own experience. Generously established by the R & M Lang Foundation and administered by Hot Docs, the Fund annual awards a $10,000 grant to one applicant.

In addition to financial support, the recipient also receives support to attend Hot Docs.

The CrossCurrents Doc Fund came at a crucial time for our project…it was great to find a fund that supports this kind of project, empowering underrepresented voices and opening a space for them in the industry.

Emerging filmmakers from anywhere in the world can apply for this $10,000 CDN grant for short or mid-length projects.

The CrossCurrents Doc Fund provides one successful applicant per year with a grant of $10,000 CDN, which could reflect up to 100 per cent of the project’s production budget.

Please read the below guidelines before applying.


You always need a Film Business Plan to get funding from investors.

The Fund seeks to support projects where its contribution provides for maximum impact, especially those that target broad audiences, reach across a range of communities, and encourage understanding and appreciation of unheard voices.

Applicants must be:

35 years of age or under
An emerging filmmaker from anywhere in the world (i.e. three or fewer professional directing credits)

Note: Professional credits include any commercial (distributed theatrically, on broadcast, DVD or via viable/curated digital platforms like iTunes, Netflix, Hulu) or festival-run short, feature-length or series project (fiction or documentary) where you held the role as director.

Projects must be:

Low-budget films (i.e. under $25,000 CDN)
Short to mid-length works (i.e. five to 50 minutes)
Primarily for release online or as web docs/interactive projects
Majority owned by the applicant
In development or production

We will not accept:

Submissions from producers
Film project proposals that are school, institute or university course work
Projects at a rough cut stage or projects that will be finished by Hot Docs
Projects that already have a broadcaster attached


Submissions for the Fund will include the following elements:

Applicant bio, list of credits, links to previous work and education history
Top line crew details
Brief synopsis (maximum 500 words) and detailed film treatment (maximum 2000 words)
Links to teaser, trailer, or scene selection
Detailed project strategy, including audience goals, preliminary distribution and screening plans, as well as financing strategy (maximum 1000 words)
Budget summary, including all confirmed and pending funding
Eligibility statement including inspiration and challenges (maximum 1000 words), relationship with the subject matter of the project, and the fund’s impact on your project. (maximum 1000 words)


Applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

Overall adherence to the Fund’s aims, especially regarding the relationship of the filmmaker with the subject matter of the project
Filmmakers must demonstrate how they are storytelling from within the underrepresented community, as opposed to looking in from the outside
Strength, style and originality of the subject matter and the treatment
An assessment of the grant’s total financial and professional impact on the project’s realization
Vision and ability of the filmmaker
Feasibility of the project with respect to its budget, financing, schedule and scope
The film’s strategy to access meaningful audience engagement
Illustration of a digital/online engagement and distribution strategy


The successful applicant will receive a grant of $10,000 CDN, which could reflect up to 100 per cent of the project’s production budget.

Eligible costs include standard industry production and post-production expenses.

Finishing costs (e.g. captioning, versioning, prints) are NOT eligible
Marketing, distribution and community engagement costs may be eligible as a portion of the grant (maximum 20 per cent). A detailed engagement and distribution strategy should be included with this request.

To inquire about exceptions, please contact Heidi Tao Yang at before applying.


In addition to the production grant, the successful recipient will be provided with a Hot Docs Fellowship, which includes travel, accommodation and accreditation to the annual Hot Docs Festival and enrollment in the documentary Channel Doc Accelerator program and mentorship initiatives.

Grant Deadline: 28 September

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