The Bridging Cultures through Film: International Topics program supports documentary films that examine international and transnational themes in the humanities. These projects are meant to spark Americans’ engagement with the broader world by exploring one or more countries and cultures outside of the United States. Proposed documentaries must be analytical and deeply grounded in humanities scholarship. Themes may include, but are not limited to, an examination of a critical issue in ethics, religion, or history, viewed through an international lens; an exploration of a topic that transcends a single nation-state, with the topic being explored across borders; or an exploration of the history and culture(s) of a specific region, country, or community outside of the United States.
November 2011 Council
The Haing S. Ngor Film Project
Dr. Haing S. Ngor Foundation
Santa Monica, CA
Award: Outright; $74,804
Development of a 90-minute documentary film examining Cambodian actor Haing Ngor’s experiences during the Cambodian genocide and his life in America afterwards.
Zayn oder nit zayn: To Be or Not To Be in Yiddish
National Center for Jewish Film
Award: Outright; $60,000
Development of a 60-minute documentary that follows a group of young actors preparing a production that explores the history of Yiddish theater.
Female Singers and Muslim Tradition in Pakistan from 1947 to the Present
Montclair State University
Upper Montclair, NJ
Award: Outright; $70,000
Development of a documentary film that examines the role of secular and religious female singers in Pakistan and their contributions to the musical legacies of the Indo-Pakistani subcontinent.
Buffalo Bill and the Influence of the American West on European Culture
Women Make Movies, Inc.
New York, NY
Award: Outright; $59,823
Development of a 90-minute documentary about Europe’s fascination with the American West in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
The Railway that Built a Nation
Western New York Public Broadcasting Association
Award: Outright; $73,150
Development of a two-hour documentary about the creation of Canada’s first transcontinental railway.
Bridging Cultures  is an agency-wide initiative, engages the power of the humanities to promote understanding and mutual respect for people with diverse histories, cultures, and perspectives within the United States and abroad.