2014 TAA Grantees Announced

Today TFI unveiled the projects that have been selected for the 11th Tribeca All Access® program. Each project will receive $15,000 as well as offer year-round support, guidance, and resources, including one-on-one industry meetings at the Tribeca Film Festival.

The ten projects listed below will be included in the esteemed list of projects that have been supported by the program in the past, which recently includes titles like Through A Lens Darkly (2014 Sundance Film Festival), God Loves Uganda (2013 Sundance Film Festival), Evolution Of A Criminal (2014 SXSW), Obvious Child (2014 Sundance Film Festival, bought by A24), Rhymes for Young Ghouls (2013 Toronto International Film Festival, 2014 International Film Festival Rotterdam), and I Believe in Unicorns (2014 SXSW).

TAA supports filmmakers from statistically underrepresented communities. The program received 620 submissions this year from across the country.

We are proud to welcome the following projects to the TAA family.

Five grants will be awarded to Documentary projects in various stages: 

Directed and Produced by Tracy Rector and Lou Karsen
Over a 650 mile canoe journey, Clearwater will explore the Coast Salish people’s intimate relationship to the Salish Sea. Their unique story is one of survival, adaptation and continual acceptance of an outside world. Set in the ancient waters of the Puget Sound, Clearwater is a non-fiction film about a community’s ability to transcend environmental, cultural and social changes without sacrificing a sacred way of life. 

In The Shadow of the Hills
Directed and Produced by Bao Nguyen (produced 2030, a Sloan-supported project, premiered at Berlin Film Festival); Written and Produced by Elizabeth Ai
Told through the perspective of two young Hmong women, In the Shadow of the Hills is a longitudinal observation of the rural agrarian communities of Sapa, Vietnam where the indigenous people have suddenly found themselves dealing with issues of rapid development, educational disparity, and human trafficking.

The Moni Yakim Legacy Project
Written, Produced and Directed by Rauzar Alexander; Produced Kali Wilder, Boaz Yakin and Alma Har'el (Directed 2011 Tribeca Film Festival Best Documentary Feature winner Bombay Beach; 2012 TFI Documentary Fund grantee for Love True)
A rare look into a master and pioneer of theatrical movement who recounts his own evolution and the inception of the Juilliard Acting School. Revered Juilliard alumni and present students attest to his groundbreaking methods that push actors to their utmost physical and emotional potential.

Out of State
Directed and Produced by Ciara L. Lacy; Produced by Beau J.K. Bassett
Out of State follows a group of roughly 100 native Hawaiian inmates practicing hula, a native Hawaiian dance form, as a means of maintaining their cultural heritage and working to rehabilitate themselves and their relationships with their families. 

The Unafraid (working title)
Directed and Produced by Heather Courtney and Anayansi Prado
In a conference room in an Atlanta office building, a quiet revolution takes place every Sunday when a group of teenagers and 20-somethings gather to do something Georgia has banned them from doing – attend a college class. The Unafraid, a vérité, multi-year documentary, will follow the story of this new underground movement, as well as the daily lives of several of these undocumented youth, now faced with the post-high school reality of being banned immigrants in a state they have called home for most of their childhood. 

Five grants will be awarded to Narrative projects in various stages:

Written and Directed by Qasim "Q" Basir; produced by Tommy Oliver
Destined tells the parallel stories of Sheed and Rasheed (played by the same actor) as they explore the idea of destiny as well as how  the smallest incident  can manifest itself into a life changing event.

Falcon Lake
Written by Sara Seligman and Thomas Bond; Directed by Sara Seligman; Produced by Christopher Mack and Van Johnson
Ester runs a bed-and-breakfast near the USA/Mexico border with her overbearing mother, Teresa.  They save the money they earn, hoping to leave this town that is filled with memories of violence and fallen family members.  One day, two drug runners invade their home.  The women are faced with a choice, one that is further complicated by a terrifying secret the women share – one that will ultimately reveal who really is in charge of the house.

Written and Directed by Colette Burson; Produced by Haroula Rose
Permanent is a comedy about bad hair, adolescence, and socially awkward family members. It involves life-altering permanents and poorly-made toupees. Obstacles to daily survival ensue.

Strange Things Are Happening
Written and Directed by Stacie Passon; Produced by Rose Troche (2005 TAA grantee for In a Country of Mothers)
A woman who has agreed to take in her grandson in his last year of high school becomes increasingly worried that the boy poses a threat to her and her elderly husband.

Baby Steps
Written and Directed by Barney Cheng; Executive Produced by Li-Kong Hsu, Nancy Cheng, Alan Hibdon, Han-Yeu Huang; Produced by Li-Kong Hsu, Stephen Israel
Danny, a Taiwanese-American man, and his boyfriend Tate must travel thousands of miles across the globe in order to have a baby and start a family. Their journey is further complicated by a well-meaning but extremely meddlesome Taiwanese mother who wants to control every aspect of the process all the way from Taipei.

Additional mentorship and marketplace support will be provided to one Narrative project through a partnership with Canadian Film Centre:

Jean of the Joneses
Written and Directed by Stella Meghie; Produced by Amos Adetuyi
Jean is a girl from a dysfunctional family of Jamaican women who have happily sent all the men in their lives running for the past 30 years. She's on the brink of following in the family tradition until the day her estranged grandfather dies on her doorstep.

Read press release.

Tribeca All Access® is made possible by Time Warner Foundation with additional support from The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and the New York State Council on the Arts.

[Photo: The Moni Yakim Legacy Project]