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The Short Documentaries program supports the production and distribution of documentary films up to 30 minutes that engage audiences with humanities ideas in appealing ways. The program aims to extend the humanities to new audiences through the medium of short documentary films. Films must be grounded in humanities scholarship.
The Short Documentaries program supports production of single films or a series of thematically-related short films addressing significant figures, events, or ideas. The proposed film(s) must be intended for regional or national distribution, via broadcast, festivals, and/or online distribution. The subject of the film(s) must be related to “A More Perfect Union”: NEH Special Initiative Advancing Civic Education and Commemorating the Nation’s 250th Anniversary.
Applicants must have consulted with a team of scholarly advisers in the humanities to develop the humanities themes, subjects, and ideas that the film(s) will explore. The humanities scholars must provide diverse perspectives, and incorporate a range of scholarly ideas and approaches.
View a pre-recorded webinar.
Begin by reading the Notice of Funding Opportunity to ensure you understand the expectations and restrictions for projects delivered under this grant and are prepared to write the most effective application.
Sample Application Narratives
Samples of successful Short Documentaries narratives are not available, but you can review sample narratives from a related program, Media Projects, on the Development Grants program resource page or the Production Grants program resource page.
To apply to this program, your organization will be need to be registered for a D-U-N-S® number, with the System for Awards Management (SAM), and with Grants.gov. If your organization has registered with these systems previously, confirm that your registrations are current and up to date. If you fail to allow ample time to complete registration with SAM or Grants.gov, you will not be eligible for a deadline extension or waiver of the online electronic submission requirement.
Be sure to follow the instructions outlined in the Notice of Funding Opportunity and in the Grants.gov instructions.
You will receive a confirmation from Grants.gov when you’ve successfully submitted your application. Subsequently, you will receive up to five more notices confirming different stages in the application process. Verify that you have received all confirmations. Note that email filters may send these messages to your spam or junk folder.