MENTORSHIP

A cultural exchange program designed to foster relationships between American and international film professionals.

Global Media Makers is supported through a partnership between Film Independent and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

The program connects international filmmakers with leading U.S. entertainment professionals through comprehensive filmmaker education, business training, professional networking opportunities and tailored mentorships.

Over 200 U.S. Mentors from the entertainment industry have participated in the program to offer project support and networking opportunities and foster creative connections for participating international filmmakers.

Past Creative Advisors and Mentors include Len Amato (HBO), Effie Brown (Dear White People), Alix Madigan (Winter’s Bone), Robin Swicord (Memoirs of a Geisha) and Ron Yerxa (Little Miss Sunshine).

Since the program’s inception, more than 80 Fellows have been served through GMM residencies, leading to nine produced projects, including Amr Salama’s Sheikh Jackson, Egypt’s official submission to the Academy Awards’ Best Foreign Language Film category in 2018, and Ayten Amin’s Souad, which was an official selection of the Cannes Film Festival in 2020.

From 2016–18, the program operated in the Arab world and Turkey, including the nations of Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates. Since 2019, GMM has broadened its scope to South Asia, including Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, while continuing to build upon an established foundation of success.

“If you don’t see yourself in the culture, put yourself there because we need you.”

For more than a quarter-century, Project Involve has been Film Independent’s most vital and impactful program. We’re proud to be a leader in the ongoing fight to build a more inclusive and equitable industry by supporting emerging filmmakers from communities underrepresented in film and entertainment.

Each year, 30 filmmakers from diverse backgrounds are given the opportunity to hone skills, form creative partnerships, create short films and gain industry access needed to succeed as working artists.

This robust program pairs participants with mentors at the top of their respective field, provides hands-on filmmaking experience from pre-production through premiere and much more.