American Documentary (AmDoc), the parent company of PBS’s “POV”, has launched a US$100,000 fund through Kickstarter to support non-fiction films and filmmakers.
The Knight-AmDoc Patron fund is supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation — a non-profit dedicated to fostering “informed and engaged communities.” It’s part of Kickstarter’s newly launched “Kickstarter Patrons” program, which aims to bridge the gap between institutions that champion creative projects and their creators.
Each Kickstarter Patron must make a public commitment to support campaigns through a series of pledges that are $1,000 or greater. Kickstarter then points the patron towards projects that align with their mission of choice.
In AmDoc’s case, the fund is intended to allow the organization to explore unscripted projects across multiple platforms and support diverse storytelling across the U.S.
“Throughout its 30-year history, it’s been AmDoc’s longstanding mission to elevate independent, non-fiction storytellers and to make their work accessible,” said Justine Nagan (pictured), executive director of American Documentary, in a statement. “Creating the fund is part of AmDoc’s effort to expand its field-building initiatives and meet mediamakers where they are.”
She added that the fund will target 26 Knight communities across the country, often in small to mid-size cities.
AmDoc will prioritize Kickstarter projects with a demonstrated commitment to diversity across the entire production team and in the focus of their work. The fund will also seek projects that embrace traditional and emerging digital media platforms, explore interactivity, and play with the non-linear nature of the web.
AmDoc staff will evaluate and select projects on a biweekly basis. After an initial contribution of $1,000 to $10,000, AmDoc may provide additional support, including guidance to help the project achieve its funding goal as well as project feedback and mentorship.
When a project successfully completes its campaign, AmDoc will follow up with creators to offer additional media support, and other opportunities to gain feedback, mentorship and engagement strategies from AmDoc staff.
Production facility Pinewood Atlanta Studios is the second company to take advantage of the Kickstarter Patrons initiative. The organization has committed to supporting projects from female filmmakers across the state of Georgia.