Media – Short Guidelines

Application Deadline: Tuesday, November 1, 2023, 11:59 PM ET  

NYFA only accepts application submitted online at:



Administered by the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) in partnership with the City of New York Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME), the NYC Women’s Fund for Media, Music and Theatre (“Women’s Fund”)is a signature initiative that addresses the underrepresentation of women in the entertainment industry. The Fund provides grants to encourage and support the creation of content that reflects the voices and perspectives of all who identify as women.

The program provides finishing funds for film, webseries, and digital projects. These Guidelines will provide an overview of the following categories:

• Fiction Short (running time of 59 minutes or less) – grant awards up to $25,000

Apply: Fiction Short

• Documentary Short (running time of 59 minutes or less) – grant awards up to $25,000

Apply: Documentary Short


Applications Open: Tuesday, August 22, 2023 at 10:00 AM ET
Applications Close: November 1, 2023 at 11:59 PM ET*
Recipients Notified: March 2024
Funded Project Completion: March 31, 2025

*Please note that the application form on Submittable will automatically close and stop accepting applications at this time.


• Projects must be made by, for, or about women and woman-identified individuals. Projects are eligible if they include and/or feature any of the following: a prominent woman-identified perspective, a meaningful woman-identified producer credit, a meaningful woman-identified writing credit, and/or a woman-identified protagonist(s).

• Projects must be completed by March 31, 2025. “Completed” means ready to be shown theatrically, on television, through a streaming service or online. Projects can be either commercial or not-for-profit in nature.

• Must have wrapped principal photography and should be able to submit a timeline that outlines final cut and distribution that meets program deadline of March 31, 2025.

• Eligible projects can be live action or animated.

• The applicant can be either the filmmaker or a producer.

• The applicant (or, if different, recipient of funds) must reside in any of the five boroughs of New York City.

• All recipients must complete an Interim Report and Final Report clearly outlining how the NYC Women’s Fund was used to complete the project along with sharing information on attendance numbers and public access plans or outcomes.

• Funds must be used to complete the project outlined in the application form. Funds may be allocated as the applicant needs to complete the project. However, funds cannot be used to purchase capital goods (including, but not limited to, computers or equipment).

• Must follow at least one of two criteria: (i) 75% of its total shooting days take place in New York City, or (ii) 75% of its production costs are “qualified production costs.”* Funds can be used for any purpose critical to the completion of the project.

*”Qualified production costs” means the below-the-line production costs only to the extent such costs are incurred directly in New York City and are attributable to the use of tangible property or the performance of services within New York City directly and predominantly in the production (including pre-production and post-production) of a qualified film.


• A detailed synopsis of the full project.

  • Please give an overview of your project’s themes and overall storyline. 
  • What is the work about? 

• How does your project prominently feature a woman-identified perspective?

  • Provide a statement detailing how your project represents a prominent woman-identified perspective.

• Current state of the project and plans for completion by March 31, 2025.

  • The NYC Women’s Fund is a finishing grant for media. Include a narrative or calendar of events/key milestones.

• Support for meeting New York City criteria regarding production or post-production.

• Distribution and Promotion plan.

  • We understand that there may not be any commitments at this point, but please describe your plans: festivals to which you will submit; exhibitors and streaming services you will contact.
  • Note: No more than 20% of the award funds may be used towards marketing and distribution.
  • The project must include a public access component as detailed below.

• Target Audience.

  • Please identify your target audience. Are there race/ethnicities, ages, genders, or geographic locations for your audience?
  • How do you plan to market your project to your target audience?

• Amount of funding requested, description of anticipated use of funds, and how they will move the project to completion.

  • Please include an itemized list to describe the anticipated use of the requested NYC Women’s Fund award amount.
  • Note:
    – The final grant amount is determined by the review panel, and considered on a per application basis and in relation to the entire pool of funds available and the group of projects awarded. We do not influence the review panel’s decision for grant fund allocations, except to disallow funding at less than 50% of the requested amount.
    – Purchases of equipment and other physical items are not an eligible spend of the NYC Women’s Fund. This includes harddrives, lighting, and camera equipment. Artist or service fees, rentals, and subscriptions for the length of the project only are accepted.

• Complete the budget.

  • You may choose to either (1) use the budget template provided via the application directly in Submittable, or (2) upload your own budget.
  • The budget must outline proposed totals of artist fees, equipment rentals, marketing, and other project expenses. The budget should also show the total project income.

• Biographies of the applicant and key artists involved in the project.

• Work samples as detailed below.


Applicants should include two work samples from the project for which they are seeking support

  • One short clip of up to 5 minutes in length
  • One longer sample up to 40 minutes, which gives the overall scope and trajectory of the film. 

You may provide context for the clips in the metadata field within the application. For the short clip, do not submit a trailer.

Quick Tips for Video Work Samples

  • Please do not submit video samples with multiple clips from different projects, “sizzle reels” and trailers. Titles and credits should not be included in excerpts.
  • When editing your video it is important to ensure your file is formatted correctly so that your video will play across a range of platforms whilst maintaining quality. Therefore it is important to choose the right codec and container for your file.
  • A codec is a method for encoding and decoding data and is used for compressing data, particularly video. Choosing the right container can depend on several desired outcomes, file size, playback quality, capabilities for re-editing etc. There are many codecs to choose from but h.264 is the preferred format for its versatility and superior quality.
  • A container is typically associated with file format and what is used to “contain” and package the data as compressed by the codec. The container is indicated by a file extension: .mov or .mp4 (MPEG4). There are many codec and container combinations but h.264 and .mp4 are preferred as they are supported by a wide range of media players with little loss of quality.
  • Uploading video files can take more time than expected. Do not leave the uploading of your work samples to the last minute. Once you know what Work Sample excerpts you will be submitting, upload them to the application form. You can always save and close your application form and go back to it at a later date.


The NYC Women’s Fund is a government-funded program by the City of New York Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME). Accordingly, recipients will be required to propose a meaningful way to provide free public access to New York City residents to the project for a limited period of time. Possibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. Presenting a public presentation with free admission for New York City residents at an approved location within the five boroughs.
  2. Granting a three year term, non-exclusive, royalty free license to the City to air programming either in its original state or edited version, starting up to four years after original release date.
  3. Other means mutually agreed to by MOME and NYFA.


Anyone can apply and be awarded a grant regardless of actual or perceived sex, gender, gender identity or gender expression, sexual orientation, age, religion, creed, partnership status, marital status, disability (including use of a service animal), race, color, national origin, alienage, citizenship status, military status, or any other class protected by City, State, or Federal law.

NYFA is committed to supporting artists from every background, and at all stages in their creative careers. We strongly encourage artists of color, LGBTQ+ artists, and artists with disabilities to apply.

Read NYFA’s DEIA statement on our website


To request an accommodation or assistance in applying, please email [email protected]. We ask that requests for accommodation be made as soon as possible, preferably two weeks prior to the deadline (by October 11, 2023), to allow adequate time for staff to support you in submitting an application on time.