Christian Filmmaking Fund
A unique and revolutionary take on funding Christian filmmakers
Since Focus on Jesus Ministries began in 2003, we've had a heart and a passion for film. The FoJ Christian Filmmaking Fund was conceived in early 2021 and will launch late 2023 / early 2024 to provide a unique and revolutionary way of funding Christian filmmakers.
How It Works
1. Anyone interested in seeing God-honoring family films and faith-based films can become a member of the Christian Filmmaking Fund.Members are individuals who have committed to donate a monthly contribution of $5 or more per month. These contributions fund a pool of money which will be used to award grants.
2. Filmmakers may submit their projects for consideration for funding.Filmmakers must also be members and each project goes through a straight-forward vetting process.
3. Each month, all members can review and vote on the projects which have passed our vetting process.
4. Each month, up to 5 projects are chosen to receive a grant for their project.Some months may be more or less depending on the pool of funds raised during the previous month.
Monthly GrantsThe following grants are awarded each month that the previous month's total contributions exceeds the minimum threshold.
Emerging Filmmaker GrantGrant Amount: 25% of that month's grant pool (up to $15,000)
Any filmmaker who has samples of previous work which represents quality production value and a clear or unique vision may apply for this grant for an upcoming short film project. This is a grant geared toward helping filmmakers who share a Christ-centered worldview gain traction and exposure in the industry to launch their careers.
Gospel Message GrantGrant Amount: 25% of that month's grant pool (up to $15,000)
Eligible projects for this grant must be a film which would clearly be labeled as a "Christian film", "Gospel film" or "Faith-based". The story must have a clear gospel message, but does not require a character to have a conversion experience and does not require a character to "preach" the entire "gospel presentation", as long as the message is clear. Films should prioritize story over message, and the message should simply point people to Jesus rather than dabble in denominational differences.
Development GrantGrant Amount: 15% of that month's grant pool (up to $15,000)
This grant is for feature films and series only. It is designed to provide filmmakers with the funding required to cover the costs of raising funds for a larger budget project. The script must already be complete and grant recipients must go through a very specific process to be eligible for funding, detailed on our rules page.
Short Film GrantGrant Amount: 15% of that month's grant pool (up to $15,000)
Any short films submitted to any other category are automatically eligible for this grant as well, if not selected as a recipient in another category.
New Filmmaker GrantGrant Amount: 10% of monthly grant pool (up to $10,000)
This grant is for first-time and second-time filmmakers. Whenever possible, additional consultation or training will be provided to grant recipients as a condition of funding. When possible, an experienced filmmaker may also be paired with the grant recipient to assist or mentor in some way.
This project will launch late 2023 / early 2024. This date may be slightly modified based on donations raised to date and any issues getting the online membership and voting area setup. This gives us time to promote what we're doing and gain traction to ensure that the grants we offer will be substantial from the start.
Voting / Judging - Awarding the GrantsWe've created a hybrid system which combines voting and judging in an attempt to find the highest quality and most worthy projects.
A system relying solely on voting will never truly be unbiased and is open to being taken advantage of. But, a system relying solely on judges is time consuming and expensive. Instead, we have a hybrid model which uses two levels of voting for each grant, followed by a round of judging by experienced professionals.
Voting ProcessEach project submitted for consideration goes through a straight-forward vetting process.
Each month, projects which pass our vetting process, go through two rounds of voting.
The first round of voting allows members to view all projects which passed the vetting process. Members may "up-vote" any number of projects. The "up-vote" simply says, "this is a project I'd like to see someday".
Once the first round of voting ends, the 50 projects with the most up-votes move on to the second round of voting. This second round is the more official vote. Members have a limited number of votes and vote on projects in each grant category.
Filmmakers are not able to vote for their own projects. (You'll see why below.)
JudgingOnce voting is complete, the top five films in each category will be presented to a panel of judges who will rank projects based on the following criteria:
1 to 5 - Project is Suitable for the Category
1 to 5 - Filmmaker's Previous Experience or has Demonstrated their Abilities
1 to 5 - Quality of Pitch
1 to 5 - Likeliness the project will be completed / doability
1 to 5 - Likeliness the projeect will do well in front of an audience
1 to 5 - This is a story that should be told
The film in each category which receives the highest cumulative ranking from judges will be awarded the grant.
MembershipsThere are different levels of membership in the Christian Filmmaking Fund, each with different incentives.
Any Filmmaker submitting a project for funding must be a member at the time of submission and at the time of the grant being awarded. This encourages filmmakers to be contributing to the common goal - creating positive and God-honoring entertainment. This gives filmmakers a Kingdom Focus instead of a "Me Focus".
Free MembershipThis isn't officially a membership, but by signing up for a free account, you are eligible to vote for one project in each category each month.
The Frugal Member ($5 / month)All members giving $5 per month or more become eligible to submit film projects for funding and receive an additional 5 votes per month which can be allocated however you wish.
The Appreciated Member ($25 / month)Members who give $25 per month or more for at least 6 months will receive a Special Thanks credit in at least one project funded by a grant during each six month period.
The Influencer Member ($50 / month)Members who give $50 per month or more, in their second month of membership, will receive 25 votes per month instead of five. When you give more, you have a little more say in which projects receive funding. Plus, members at this standing for at least 6 months will receive a Special Thanks credit in at least two projects funded during each six month period.
The Well Loved Member ($250 / month)Members who give $250 per month or more for at least 3 months will receive a Special Thanks credit in two projects each month, starting in the third month of their membership.
Seasoned Professional MemberMembers at any level who have consistently produced/directed and accomplished high quality works will be eligible for applying for this special designation. This designation only lasts one year and must be re-applied for each year. There is no additional cost for this special designation, but only 100 members per year may carry this designation. This membership grants experienced and seasoned professionals an additional 20 votes per month. The intention is that this will slightly skew the voting in favor of projects which seasoned professionals see merit in, while still giving the audience the majority of the voice in which projects get selected.
Story / Moral CriteriaNot all projects require a “Christian film” label nor require preachy content or clear Gospel presentation. However, all films must be God-honoring. The majority of films should be family-friendly. Films should not contain nudity or sexually explicit scenes. Only when there is a clear need to correctly portray a character (and most likely a redemption element) can sexual content be implied as long as not visualized - for instance a story of a prostitute experiencing the saving grace of God would require showing that the character is a prostitute but without showing nudity or sexual acts.
Grant Applications Open early 2024
Why will it take so long to get this started?It is our goal to do this well and to do it right. For that reason, we are making sure we give ourselves enough time to do accomplish the following before launch in order to make this as big of a success as possible:
- Raise awareness and support prior to awarding the first grant
- Raise additional funds to help increase the amount or number of grants during the first few months (or during any months where there is a drop in giving).
- To plan, prepare and research any technical or legal aspects to ensure this is done as well as possible.
- To build partnerships with industry players who may be able to provide substantial support to this program or to the filmmakers we support.
- To build and prepare our online membership and voting system which will support our unique needs and model.
Your financial support will help transform our culture, transform Hollywood, and make a difference in the lives of countless filmmakers who are using their gifts and talents for God's glory!Donate Today!
Please NoteThis program is still being developed and finalized. Some details or timelines may still change. All funds donated toward this project will be used to support the development and production of Christian, family and God-honoring film, media and entertainment, even if the specifics of this program change.
Platinum Partners The Focus on Jesus Ministries Christian Movie Grant is generously supported by
Complete Church Management, Online Giving and Text Messaging Platform
Please contact us to discuss partnership opportunities if your company or organization would like to support the Christian Filmmaking Fund!