Local Filmmaker Grant

The San Antonio Film Commission’s Local Filmmaker Grant is a competitive grant that awards $5,000 matching funds to local filmmakers for their projects. The goal of the grant is to help cultivate the work and professional development of San Antonio residents in the film industry – in turn elevating and promoting the film culture of San Antonio. The Local Filmmaker Grant is awarded to San Antonio filmmakers who show talent and promise in the field of film.

Congratulations to previous grant winners Allison Herrera, Dean Hollis, Scott Langford, Aundar Ma'at, Nathaniel "Than" Niles, Alex Ramirez, Justin Rodriguez, Eduardo Ruiz-Healy, Rogelio Salinas, Will Shipley, Dave Sims, Natasha Straley and Mark A. Zuniga!  

The Call for Local Filmmaker Grant Application is now closed.

Applicants must meet the following requirements to be eligible for this grant:

  • Applicants must be a Greater San Antonio Metropolitan Area (GSAMA) resident a minimum of one year prior to the application deadline. GSAMA is defined as these counties: Atascosa, Bandera, Bexar, Comal, Guadalupe, Kendall, Medina, and Wilson
  • Applicants are ineligible if attending school full time outside of the GSAMA
  • Current Film Commission staff, Film Committee members and interns may not apply
  • Grant recipients can only receive one grant per year and only one grant for the lifetime of the project

In order to qualify for the Local Filmmaker Grant, projects must meet the following requirements:

  • Shorts, webisodes, animations, documentaries, and TV pilots and shows 50 minutes or less are eligible to apply. Industrial or promotional pieces, music videos, features, “works-for-hire” and any content more than 50 minutes in length is ineligible
  • Projects may not apply for development or distribution funds
  • Projects do not qualify for funding through the Local Filmmaker Grant if they have received funding from other San Antonio Film Commission Funding sources (i.e. the San Antonio Supplemental Film Incentive)
  • The Local Filmmaker Grant is a matching funds grant. Project budgets and documentation must provide proof that $5,000 cash has been raised for the project to quality for the grant. In-kind funds do not qualify
  • Project must be filmed in the Greater San Antonio Metropolitan Area

Grant Amount
Applicants may apply for a matching funds grant of $5,000.

To apply for the San Antonio Filmmaker Grant, applicants must submit the following items in their entirety in one email by the deadline to with the subject line: Local Filmmaker Grant Submission – Name of Applicant

Required Application Information and Documents:

  • Local Filmmaker Grant Application and Checklist
  • Applicant Information 
    • Applicant's name and contact information
    • Applicant's title and role with the project
    • Scanned copy of Texas Driver’s License or Texas ID
    • Scanned copy of current bill or other acceptable document dated during the Local Filmmaker Grant open call timeframe with applicant’s name and San Antonio address on it
    • Scanned copy of bill or other acceptable document dated one year prior to the Local Filmmaker Grant deadline with applicant’s name and San Antonio address on it
    • Scanned copy of bank statement showcasing proof applicant has secured $5,000 in matching funds
  • Project Description (1 – 3 pages)
    This portion of the submission should include:
    • The treatment or synopsis of the film, which includes details about stylistic approach, visual elements, story structure, and thematic threads (3 paragraphs)
    • The location(s) where the applicant intends to film the project (city and bulleted list of types of locations)
    • How the Local Filmmaker Grant will be used (1 paragraph)
    • Target audience and distribution plans (1 paragraph)
    • The production plan, creative team and information about the project’s current status (2 paragraphs)
  • Project Timeline (1 page)
    In bullet points, list the key stages of the production from pre-production all the way through distribution with the time allotted to each and anticipated dates.
  • Bios of the project’s key creative team (1 page)
  • Full Script
  • Local Filmmaker Grant Budget Cover Sheet
  • Local Filmmaker Grant Budget Sheet
  • Video Sample
    • Hard copies (DVDs, thumb drives, etc.) are not accepted. Password-protected video links that showcase the applicant’s best work are accepted as part of the video sample
    • Applicant must submit two video samples that are six minutes or less in length
    • The sample must be of work by the applicant

Optional Attachments:
Additional support materials must not exceed five pages long. All files must be loaded as a single PDF, video samples and links can be provided on a page of the PDF. No hard copies or physical materials will be accepted.

  • Links to or electronic files of reviews, articles, images or up to two letters of support
  • Additional video samples, including a link to a full feature or full short

All applications will be reviewed by an independent panel of at least three persons. Applications will be reviewed based on criteria including, but not limited to, the quality of the submission, quality video submissions, strength/experience level of production team, thoroughness and feasibility of budget, and positive promotion of San Antonio. Grants will be presented in $5,000 increments to top scoring applications, with the amount dependent on budget availability each fiscal year.

Requirements of Grant Winners
In order to receive their $5,000 grant, winning applicants must:

  • Enter an Agreement with the City of San Antonio governing the funds beginning on October 1, 2019
  • Complete the project (screen-ready format) by September 30, 2020
  • Carry out a project that is consistent with the submitted proposal
  • Notify the San Antonio Film Commission of any significant changes to the submitted project
  • Send the San Antonio Film Commission an electronic copy of the final product. If project creates a DVD with case, applicant must provide San Antonio Film Commission one copy
  • Copy on all Call Sheets
  • Agree to be interviewed by any news outlets or for any marketing opportunities 
  • Use the San Antonio Film Commission’s animated logo at the end credits of the project
  • Send at least five hi-res, behind-the-scenes photos of the filming of the project (showing working crew, camera operators, etc.) and five still shots to the San Antonio Film Commission for use for marketing and promotional purpose
  • Create social media handles for the production and include the following in the biographies/about us sections:
    • That the production is from San Antonio; and
    • The language, “[Name of project] is a proud recipient of the @FilmSanAntonio Local Filmmaker Grant. #filmsa”
  • Mention the San Antonio Film Commission in at least one social media post on the production's social media handles
  • Mention the San Antonio Film Commission in a thank you credit on IMDb
  • Collaborate with the San Antonio Film Commission on a local screening