September 29, 2008

Film Independent Announces Sloan Producers Grant Recipient

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Film Independent announced today the recipient of the second annual Sloan Producers Grant. The organization also announced the fellows selected for Film Independent's annual Producers Lab, which runs in Los Angeles from September 29 through November 13, 2008. Anne Clements (Quinceanera) will teach the Lab, which is sponsored by Technicolor.

The Sloan Producers Grant, sponsored by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, was awarded to Jim Young, who is producing the feature film The Man Who Knew Infinity, a biopic about the Indian mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan. Based on a book by Robert Kanigel, the film is written and to be directed by Matt Brown; it is being executive produced by Ed Pressman, Mira Nair, and Sofia Sondervan. As the recipient of the Sloan Producers Grant, Young will receive a $25,000 development grant, will participate in Film Independent's 2008 Producers Lab and receive year-round support from Film Independent.

The grant is funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, which seeks to create and develop new scripts and films about science and technology and to see them into commercial production with national and international distribution.

"We are so happy to be working with the Sloan Foundation, and thrilled to be able to support Jim Young in this way," said Josh Welsh, Director of Talent Development at Film Independent. "We're also honored to have Anne Clements, a true indie producer, teaching the Lab and working with all the filmmakers in the program."

"We are delighted to partner with Film Independent in supporting the development of this film project about the great Indian mathematician Ramanujan, who made major contributions in pure mathematics and opened up new areas of research, several with practical applications for modern life," said Doron Weber, program Director at the Sloan Foundation. "This moving personal odyssey of a rare math genius is also a story about the human spirit and the sacrifices exacted when one great culture seeks recognition and respect by another."

Young recently wrapped productionon the feature film Don McKay which stars Thomas Haden Church and Elizabeth Shue. He also recently produced Morgan J. Freeman's feature Homecoming, starring Mischa Barton.

Over the last twelve months, Film Independent has awarded more than $200,000 in cash grants and awards to filmmakers: three $25,000 unrestricted cash grants at the Spirit Awards; $100,000 in cash awards at the Los Angeles Film Festival; a $10,000 HBO Documentary Films/FIND Fellowship; and the Sloan Producers Grant. Additionally, Film Independent has awarded $30,000 in Kodak film stock to three graduates of its Talent Development programs.

The Producers Lab is an intensive seven-week program designed to assist producers working in independent film improve their craft and to move their current projects into production. Producers Lab participants are chosen based on the strength of screenwriter's submitted script and application, and an interview process.

   This year's participants and their projects are:    Jan Eliasberg, HEART OF THE ATOM    Wendy Guerrero, HART'S LOCATION    Wittney Horton, CLOSE TO ME    Steak House, THE SUMMER WE DROWNED    Nicole Asher, BETTY    Tamara Maloney and Mo Perkins, THE CHUMP BROTHERS    Danielle Probst, DIFFICULT CHILD    Elyse Strong, STRANGE FRUIT    Sybil Temtchine, AUDREY    Jim Young, THE MAN WHO KNEW INFINITY    

Past Producers Lab participants include Scott Prendergast, whose debut feature Kabluey, starring Lisa Kudrow and Teri Garr, was released this year; Ted Kroeber, who produced the IFC film American Gun, Four Sheets to the Wind, and Splinter; So Yong Kim, whose debut feature In Between Days was released by New Yorker Films this year; and Jessica Sanders, whose documentary film After Innocence was short-listed for the 2006 Academy Awards(R).

Film Independent's Producers Lab has been taught by such producers as Ram Bergman (The Brothers Bloom), Effie T. Brown (Rocket Science), Eric d'Arbeloff (Lovely and Amazing), Matthew Greenfield (The Good Girl), Gina Kwon (Me and You and Everyone We Know), Shelby Stone (Lackawanna Blues), and Alison Dickey (Piggie). Film Independent is thrilled to add Anne Clements to this prestigious group.


Film Independent is a non-profit membership organization that champions independent film and supports a community of artists who embody diversity, innovation, and uniqueness of vision. Film Independent helps filmmakers make their movies, builds the audience for their projects, and works to diversify the film industry. Anyone passionate about film can become a member, whether you are a filmmaker, film industry leader, or a film lover.

With over 250 annual screenings and events, Film Independent provides access to a network of like-minded artists who are driving creativity in the film industry. Film Independent also offers free Filmmaker Labs for selected writers, directors, and producers; provides cut-rate services for filmmakers; and presents year-round networking opportunities. Film Independent's mentorship and job placement program, Project:Involve, pairs emerging culturally-diverse filmmakers with film industry professionals.

Film Independent produces the Los Angeles Film Festival, celebrating the best of American and international cinema, and the Spirit Awards, a celebration honoring films and filmmakers that embody independence and dare to challenge the status quo.

   For more information or to become a member, visit    ABOUT THE SLOAN FOUNDATION  

The New York-based Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, founded in 1934, makes grants in science, technology, economic performance and the quality of American life. The Foundation's program in public understanding of science and technology, directed by Doron Weber, supports books, radio, film, television, and theatre that seek to bridge the gap between the 'two cultures" of science and the humanities. Sloan's partnership with Film Independent forms part of a broader national effort that includes support for screenwriting and film production at six of the nation's leading film schools and partnerships with the Sundance Institute, the Tribeca Film Institute and the Hamptons International Film festival for film prizes, screenings, panels and screenwriting workshops.

Film Independent

CONTACT: Julie Siegel of Film Independent, +1-310-432-1287

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