2013 Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund Grantees Announced

Today TFI has announced the 2013 grantees for the Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund, which provides production and finishing finances, year-round support and guidance to domestic and international documentary filmmakers with feature-length films highlighting and humanizing critical issues of social significance from around the world.

Having supported 45 films in its six year existence, GTDF is now welcoming nine new projects to the club, which are selected from 500 submissions from 60 countries to receive a total of $150,000, to be administered by the Tribeca Film Institute.

For the third year, the Kering Foundation (formerly the PPR Corporate Foundation for Women’s Dignity & Rights) has joined the Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund to present the Spotlighting Women Documentary Award. Three film projects have been chosen that illuminate the courage, compassion, extraordinary strength of character, and contributions of women from around the world.

Projects this year include works from Oscar-nominated filmmakers, GTDF alumni and range from compelling stories on the business behind the international arms trade to the complexities of U.S. national security to the women behind the first girls’ school in a small Afghan village, to name just a few (full list/description of projects are below).

2013 projects were selected by a jury comprised of: Brian Sirgutz (SVP of Social Impact at AOL/Huffington Post Media Group); Jada Pinkett Smith; Molly Thompson (SVP, A&E IndieFilms); Olivia Wilde; and director Roger Ross Williams (Music by Prudence, God Loves Uganda). The committee chose the recipients from finalists selected by TFI. In addition to funding, grantees will each receive year-round support from TFI, including one-on-one guidance and consultation to help each film to reach completion, enter the marketplace, and find broader audiences for their work.

The projects that will collectively receive $100,000 total in funding for the 2013 Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund are:

Run and Gun, Directed and Produced by Marshall Curry (2008 GTDF grantee for If A Tree Falls). A 32 year old American from Baltimore carries a gun in one hand and camera in the other as he documents his experience as a rebel fighter in the Libyan revolution.


On a Knife Edge, Directed by Jeremy Williams; Produced by Eli Cane. Set against a background of rising racial tension and protest, a Lakota teenager learns first-hand what it means to lead a new generation and enter adulthood in a world where the odds are stacked against him.


Perry V. Schwarzenegger, Directed & Produced by Ryan White & Ben Cotner. In 2010, opponents of gay marriage blocked the broadcast of a federal trial challenging Proposition 8, California’s ban on same-sex marriage. That case is now before the U.S. Supreme Court, where it will rule for the first time on the rights of gay Americans to marry.


The Shadow World, Directed by Johan Grimonprez; Produced by Joslyn Barnes, Anadil Hossain & Driss Benyaklef. The Shadow World is a feature documentary that explores the international arms trade, the only business that counts its wins and losses in human lives. Based on the book by Andrew Feinstein.


Silenced, Directed by James Spione; Produced by Daniel Chalfen; Executive Produced by Jim Butterworth. Four whistleblowers fight to reveal the darkest corners of America's war on terror, challenging a government that is increasingly determined to maintain secrecy.


Unlocking The Cage, Directed by DA Pennebaker & Chris Hegedus; Produced by Rosadel Varela & Frazer Pennebaker. Renowned animal rights attorney Steven Wise wants to break through the legal wall that separates animals and humans. His lawsuit, the first of its kind, will demand the most basic of personhood rights - those of bodily integrity and liberty - for an animal of a species that has been proven to have advanced cognitive capabilities, transforming the status of the animal from that of a mere "thing" to a “person” possessing rights that protect him from abuse and captivity.


The projects that will collectively receive $50,000 total in funding for the 2013 Spotlighting Women Documentary Award are:

Democrazy, Directed by Andreas Dalsgaard, Nicolas Servide & Viviana Gomez; Produced by Joshua Oppenheimer, Signe Sorensen & Anne Kohncke. Katherin is fighting for peace and democracy in Colombia. Her hero is the unconventional politician Antanas Mockus. This film investigates how to establish trust in a society ravaged by violence, fear and corruption.


Disruption, Directed by Pamela Yates; Produced by Paco de Onis. A band of Latin American activist-economists set out to change their continent, teaming up with impoverished women to challenge accepted notions on how to eradicate poverty. The women become empowered economic and political engines of their communities. If taken to scale, could 20 million women upend a continent?


What Tomorrow Brings, Directed & Produced by Beth Murphy (2009 GTDF Grantee, The List), Co-Produced by Beth Balaban. In the remote & conservative Afghan village of Deh Subz, the very first girls’ school opens, challenging centuries-old social traditions against the backdrop of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and rising threats to girls’ education.

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