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Next deadline is March 6, 2008 by 4:00 p.m.

CIFVF
666 Kirkwood Ave., Suite 203
Ottawa, ON K1Z 5X9

Eligibility Criteria »
Read the CIFVF's Mission and its eligibility and selection criteria for funding film and video projects.

Guide - Development »
Before investing time and resources preparing an application, you should ensure that you and your project meet the Funds eligibility criteria. To this end, you should begin by reading the CIFVFs Eligibility and Selection Criteria for Film and Video Applications.

Guide - Production & Post Production » provides advice on how to complete an application for development or production or post-production financing.

The CIFVF gratefully acknowledges the financial participation of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

Le Fonds reconnait L'appui financier du gouvernement du Canada par l'entremise du ministère du Patrimoine canadien.
Website design and development.

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA
  • Eligibility Criteria (MS Word)

  • What Is The CIFVF

    The Canadian Independent Film & Video Fund (CIFVF) is a dynamic private sector funding body which supports non-theatrical film and, video and new media projects created by Canadian independent producers to enable lifelong learning.

    CIFVF OBJECTIVES

    The CIFVF's eligibility and selection criteria are based on its objectives, which are:

    • To provide the educational/informational production sector with a source of funding that will assist the industry to realize original production ideas that have a demonstrable market.
    • To increase the amount of new Canadian educational/informational film and videotape productions in Canadian markets.
    • To promote and foster the development of Canada's regional educational/informational film and video production sectors by ensuring that access to the Fund is guaranteed to private sector producers from all regions of Canada.
    • To encourage the development of Canadian educational/informational film and video productions among visible minorities, women and aboriginal peoples by ensuring that visible minorities, women and aboriginal peoples from across Canada have access to the Fund.
    • To increase market opportunities and foster distribution of Canadian educational/informational film and video productions among all regions of the country.

    CIFVF Structure

    The CIFVF is not part of government. It is a non-profit organization with a volunteer board of directors from the private sector and two full-time staff.

    The CIFVF strives to have the best Board members available to provide knowledgeable policy and operational advice and corporate governance. Its Board members are therefore active members of the Canadian industry and, as such, are also eligible to submit CIFVF applications.

    To ensure that there is no potential conflict of interest, CIFVF Board member do not sit on the jury that makes decisions on the selection of projects for funding. The independent jury's decisions are final.

    The CIFVF Board of Directors has established, and periodically reviews, priorities and eligibility and selection criteria governing the commitment of funding. The priorities and criteria are applied by independent juries in making decisions on applications for financial assistance.

    Linguistic Priorities

    In managing its financial allocations for funding independent production, the CIFVF strives to ensure that:

    • No less than one-third of the funding available for projects is designated to assist original French-language productions; and
    • approximately two-thirds of the funding is designated to assist original English-language productions.

    Projects shot in another language other than French or English must contain either voice-overs or sub-titles in French and/or English.

    Geographic Priorities

    Educational and informational production activity is carried out in all parts of Canada and CIFVF makes every attempt to encourage and support productions originating from all regions. To that end, the CIFVF endeavours to ensure that one fifth of the monies available at each deadline is allocated to projects originating from each of the following regions:

    • Atlantic and Northern Canada
    • Quebec
    • Ontario
    • the Prairies
    • British Columbia.

    Eligible Film and Video Projects

    The CIFVF welcomes applications for funding for educational or informational projects, whether film, videotape or a series, that meet the following criteria.

    • Market: The product must be destined for one or more of the following Canadian markets (not listed in any order of priority):
      • education (from kindergarten to university level)
      • libraries
      • educational or specialty television
      • business
      • health
      • community groups
      • cultural or social service
    • Canadian content: The production must achieve Canadian content status and no less than 8 out of 10 points under the rules administered by the Canadian Audiovisual Certification Office.
    • Subject matter: The production must not contain subject matter that promotes excessive violence, violence of a sexual nature or sexual exploitation, or depicts people in a demeaning, libelous, defamatory or stereotypical manner.
    • Ineligible genres and programming formats: The following is a non-exclusive list of genres and programming formats that are not eligible to apply: variety, reality television, sports, news, game shows, current affairs, infomercials, music videos, award shows, galas, fund-raising productions, benefits, tributes, promotional productions, pep rallies.
    • Sponsorship and commissions: While the CIFVF welcomes limited participation by sponsors, a project will not be considered if its content promotes a commercial product or is sponsored or commissioned. 'Sponsored' or 'commissioned' refers to productions where one company finances more then 51% of the production budget and the producer does not retain copyright.

    Eligible Producers

    The CIFVF will only accept applications from the producer of the project for which funding is being sought. That producer must meet the following criteria:

    • Citizenship: The producer must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident;
    • Canadian ownership: The producer's production company must be either:
      • Canadian-owned and controlled, legally constituted, private sector company registered as a sole proprietorship, partnership or corporation; or
      • Canadian-owned and controlled nonprofit film/video production organization such as a film or video cooperative.
    • Principal activity: The principal activity of the production company or organization is the production of audiovisual material for distribution in the educational/informational markets or on television;
    • Production control: The producer must have demonstrable control over all financial, creative and editorial matters relating to the production, be the proven and principal owner, holder and controller of the copyright in the project, and maintain sole editorial control;
    • Canadian distribution: The producer should be prepared to enter into an exclusive contract for distribution in Canada for a period of three years with a private sector Canadian-owned and controlled distribution company with a track record in non-theatrical distribution;
    • Ineligible producer: Producers who hold a CRTC licensee or who are in default of any prior contractual obligation to the CIFVF are not eligible to apply.
    • Experience: The producer should have some prior experience as a producer.
    • New producers: A first-time producer, or an individual with related experience in production roles such as director or production manager who now seeks to produce, is eligible to submit an application. It is desirable that he or she is attached to an experienced producer or to a film/video cooperative that can provide assistance throughout the production process or can demonstrate that he/she has taken steps to inform him/herself about the producing process by taking a production course or workshop.

    Types of Financial Assistance

    The CIFVF provides both development and production financing in the form of non-equity financial participation (i.e., a grant), subject to terms and conditions set by the CIFVF.

    • Development Financing: The CIFVF allocates approximately 10% of its financial resources to development of eligible projects and may contribute up to 49% of the project's development budget to a maximum of $10,000. Eligible costs may include personnel, travel, script development, financial packaging, market research, distribution planning and production budgeting.
    • Production Financing: The CIFVF may contribute up to 49% of an eligible project's production budget to a maximum of $50,000, of which $2,500 can be allocated for marketing and distribution costs based on consultation with and input from a recognized Canadian non-theatrical distributor prior to the production's completion and release.

    Principal photography may have commenced prior to the application deadline; however, the CIFVF will not consider applications for productions that have been completed and delivered prior to the Deadline.

    Applications for projects in post-production are accepted and are considered under the criteria used by the CIFVF for production.

    Producer investment by deferrals, services or other means should not exceed 35% of the total production budget. 'Deferrals' are defined as those taken by the producer and those taken by the crew, labs or other services. 'Investment' includes donations of goods and services.

    Applications

    The CIFVF’s detailed requirements for film and video financing applications are described in the documents Development Applications: A Guide and Production and Post-Production Applications: A Guide, available from the CIFVF office and Web site.  The following information provides an overview of the required contents of both development and production applications. While the requirements for development and production financing are similar, there are important distinctions and producers considering an application for CIFVF funding are urged to carefully read the Guides.

    Application forms are available from the CIFVF office and Web site.  A form must be completed and signed by the applicant producer, and be accompanied by the supporting documentation and materials (in four copies) identified below.

    Development Application

    A complete development application will include the following materials:

    • Concept or Story Outline - A description of the project's subject matter and focus, its sustainability for the intended duration of the production.
    • Proof of Market Demand - A definition of the potential market for the project that provides substantive detail based on the producer's research on:
      • the intended audience
      • competing or analogous products
      • an assessment of users' audio-visual needs
      • evidence of support from representative users and/or subject matter experts
      • involvement of a recognized Canadian-owned and controlled private sector distributor with a proven track record in non-theatrical distribution as evidenced by a distributor's letter of interest. A list of acceptable distributors can be found on the CIFVF web site.


    • Funding Sources - A list of confirmed or pending funding from all sources for the project's development stage.
    • Budget for Development - A detailed breakdown of the full budget for the project's development.
    • Production Financing Plan - A plan of the intended sources to be approached for full production financing.
    • Key Creative Personnel - A list of all the key creative personnel involved in the project's development, with the functions that they perform together with resumes, CVs or filmographies for the producer(s), director and writer(s). A first-time producer should demonstrate that he/she is attached to an experienced producer and/or has become a member of a film/video cooperative that can provide assistance throughout the production process and/or has taken steps to inform him/herself about the producing process by taking a production course or workshop.
    • Work Plan - A description of the research and development plan including methodology, work to be undertaken on the script, schedule with key dates and financing strategy for the production.
    • Rights Acquisition - Satisfactory evidence that all necessary rights, such as chain of title, copyright, distribution rights, are held by the applicant producer. In cases where individuals and/or groups are the principal subjects of the project, letters of agreement or personal releases from the principals should be provided.

    Production or Postproduction Application

    A complete production or post-production application will include the following materials:

    • Synopsis - A one-page synopsis of the planned production.
    • Script or Detailed Treatment - A draft script is required for drama projects and a detailed treatment that illustrates the content and tone of the production for documentary projects. In the case of a series, the script or treatment must describe individual episodes.
    • Proof of Market Demand - A definition and evaluation of the potential market for the production that includes:
      • identification of the intended audience
      • identification and evaluation of competing or analogous products
      • an assessment of end users' audio-visual needs
      • letters of support from representative users and/or subject matter experts, one of which may be from a Canadian educational or specialty television broadcaster.
      • involvement of a recognized Canadian-owned and controlled private sector distributor with a proven track record in non-theatrical distribution as evidenced by a distributor's letter of interest.

    • Production Financing Structure - Details of the confirmed and pending production financing from all sources to fully-finance the production through to completion and delivery.
    • Production Budget - A summary and a detailed breakdown of the full budget for production. A complete production budget must also be provided for applications involving projects in post-production.
    • Key Creative Personnel - A list of the key creative personnel involved in the production together with the functions that they perform. In addition, the application should include the resumes, CVs or filmographies for the producer, director, writer(s), director of photography, editor, featured interview subject(s) where appropriate, and any other key creative personnel. These should be limited to a maximum of 2 pages for each. A first-time producer should demonstrate that he/she is attached to an experienced producer and/or has become a member of a film/video cooperative that can provide assistance throughout the production process and/or has taken steps to inform him/herself about the producing process by taking a production course or workshop.
    • Production Schedule - A detailed schedule, with projected dates for the intended film/video production, together with any associated material such as teachers or discussion guides that will form part of the final delivery items.
    • Rights Acquisition - Satisfactory evidence of all necessary rights such as copyright, chain of titles and distribution rights are held by the applicant producer. In cases where individuals and/or groups are the principal subjects of the project, letters of agreement or personal releases from the principals should be provided.
    • Supporting Audio-Visual Material - Three (3) copies of prior work in the form of a copy of a videotape (1/2 inch) demo reel or completed project for production applications. In the case of postproduction applications, the applicant must provide three (3) copies on video of some of the footage shot for the production.

    Evaluation Procedures

    Separate French-language and English-language juries, each composed of one producer, one distributor and one end-user, assess the applications.

    Note

    Applications and all the supporting documentation for projects that will be produced in both English and French must be submitted in one language only. The language of the application will determine whether the French-language or English-language jury evaluates the proposal.

    The CIFVF selects the members of each jury from suggestions proposed by industry associations and relevant communities across the country. A new jury is selected for each deadline. The CIFVF ensures that none of the jury members is involved in any application submitted for evaluation at that deadline. The names of jury members are kept confidential until they are released by the CIFVF at the end of the financial year in the CIFVF annual report.

    The jury rates the candidate projects to allocate the CIFVF funding available for each deadline. The evaluation is not an in-depth critical appraisal process and extensive comments are not recorded. However, some comments can be provided verbally by the CIFVF upon request by the applicant.

    Each jury considers the development, production and post-production applications. The evaluation process normally takes between 8 to 10 weeks after each Deadline. This allows jury members time to review each of the applications prior to the jury meeting.

    Additional Requirements and Conditions

    • Processing Fee: A non-refundable $50.00 fee is charged for processing applications. A cheque or money order in the amount of $50.00 must accompany each application. No exceptions will be made and any application submitted without the required fee will be returned to the applicant.

    Note
    Cheques and money orders must be made out to the
    Canadian Independent Film & Video Fund.
    • Number of Applications: Producers may submit one project for development and a different project for production or post-production at each deadline. However, a producer may not have more than one project in development and one in production or post-production under contract with the CIFVF at any given time.
    • Distribution Policy: The CIFVF's Mission is to support Canadian non-theatrical distributors operating in the private sector whose primary purpose is distribution. Therefore, the CIFVF cannot accept distribution arrangements with public sector agencies, either federal or provincial, or with distribution arms of CRTC licensed broadcasters.

    Successful projects awarded financing by the CIFVF will be required to enter into a contract with a Canadian-owned and controlled private sector distributor that provides the distributor with, at a minimum, non-theatrical rights for Canada for at least three years on an exclusive basis. Only contracts with one of the non-theatrical distributors who are listed on the CIFVF web site will be accepted.

    The CIFVF does not encourage distribution rights being licensed by the producer in perpetuity.

    Successful Applicants

    The CIFVF will issue a letter of commitment that allows the producer up to six months to finalize and confirm all other funding required to meets the total project costs. Before receiving any portion of the funds, the producer must enter into a duly executed CIFVF contract and supply the following items:

    • An updated list of confirmed sources of financing
    • Documented proof of total financing for the project
    • An updated budget
    • Proof of registration of the production company as a sole proprietorship, partnership or incorporation and that it is Canadian owned and controlled.

    Before production and post-production commitments will be released, the producer must also provide:

    • a copy of the signed distribution contract with a Canadian-owned and controlled private sector distributor for non-theatrical rights for Canada for a period of not less than three years on an exclusive basis;
    • a schedule of dates for commencement of principal photography, completion of post-production and delivery to distributor.

    Re-applications welcome

    If the CIFVF declines participation in a project, the unsuccessful applicant will be notified in writing.

    Producers may submit the same project twice in the development stage and twice in the production/post-production stage. However, the CIFVF expects that a project resubmitted in a subsequent application would reflect that progress has been made in either its development or in securing funding commitments due to the work undertaken by the producer between application deadlines.

     

    Returning Material to Applicants

    The CIFVF reserves the right to retain on file one complete copy of each application accepted for evaluation.  On request by the applicant, the CIFVF will return the remaining three copies, together with the supporting audio-visual material, to the producer.  In the event that the applicant does not request their return, the CIFVF will hold the three copies for one year and then cause them to be destroyed.

    For further information contact:

    Canadian Independent Film & Video Fund
    666 Kirkwood Avenue
    Suite 203
    Ottawa, ON
    K1Z 5X9

    Telephone:   (613) 729-1900
    Toll Free: 1-888-386-5555
    Fax: (613) 729-4610
    Email: info@cifvf.ca