Sundance Institute

There’s no denying the power of story and the role it can play in shifting the paradigm for gender equality. Our aim is to support the organizations and artists who uncover these beautiful, important, inspirational stories.

As longtime patrons of the Sundance Institute, we’ve witnessed their exceptional work and extraordinary commitment to fostering gender equity in American independent cinema. From their Documentary Film Program to their Creative Distribution Initiative, we’re eager to help advance all of their work including the various labs, grants, workshops, and ongoing resources that they offer for artists. That’s why we provide General Operating support in addition to funding for these select initiatives:

Catalyst Women: financing female filmmakers.The gender ratio in filmmaking is a huge problem, and here at theHF we understand that money matters when it comes to achieving gender parity in the arts. Our idea? Fund the females, of course! Building on the success of Sundance Catalyst, an event connecting film investors with filmmakers, we’ve helped create a female-focused version. Introducing Catalyst Women, a new initiative with our longtime partner, the Sundance Institute, to green-light female-led films. The first-time two-day event in New York City was filled with movie magic – and we’re certain that the money will soon follow for the females. The first four Catalyst gatherings raised $12.8 million!

Women at Sundance Fellows: supporting the leadership journey of women in film. For us, investing in films is not just about the stories. It’s also about who gets to tell the stories, which is why theHF invests in the professional and leadership development of people who’ve been systematically excluded from the white-male-dominated industry.

TheHF supports the Women at Sundance Fellows initiative, working to help more women succeed in careers as directors, producers, writers, editors, directors of photography, and industry leaders. The initiative’s coaching program provides each Fellow with high quality, pro bono professional coaching services during their Fellowship year. Together, they identify personal and professional goals, challenges, and opportunities, and meet quarterly to discuss career strategy and growth towards their goals. Along with this professional coaching and mentorship, the Women’s Initiative provides filmmakers with financial education and networking building while raising awareness with groundbreaking research that advances the women’s movement in film.

Photo credit: © 2014 Paul Zimmerman / WireImage