HBO New True Stories Funding Initative

The IFP/HBO New True Stories Funding Initiative supports multi-format non-fiction storytellers in the early stages of development, bringing new work to a visual format.



The fund supports a wide range of genres from emerging makers to journalists working in non-fiction formats including print, audio, and video and seeking to bring their work visually to life via short form, feature length and serialized content. Grants will typically range from $10,000 – $30,000, depending on the scale and scope of the project.


Projects on the arts, humanities, contemporary societal and political issues, and personal documentaries with approaches that range from traditional and character-driven narratives or journalistic perspectives to those more adventurous, creatively risky and formally challenging will all be considered. The key element to supported projects will be that they are stories worth telling from compelling, distinctive and fresh points of view.

Initial grants will most often be used for research, treatment and narrative development, securing access, initial shooting and the production of work samples, trailers, etc. A grant from the fund would usually be the “first money in” from an outside source, though in some cases it could be a supplement to another initial small grant. The opportunity will exist for select grantees to receive follow-up grants for additional development. Projects considered for this grant should not have funding in place from any broadcast or digital platforms or any other US distribution entity.

Funding for this grant is sponsored by HBO Documentary Films.

Letter of Inquiry

If you are interested in being considered for this Initiative, the first step is to please fill out this Letter of Inquiry in its entirety. Projects of interest will be contacted for additional information. For any other questions, please contact

  • Notifications

    Projects will be considered on a rolling basis. Projects of interest will be contacted for additional information. Please do not contact the office to receive status updates. If you have not heard from us, your project is still under consideration. Thank you.


    Please contact or Genevieve Villaflor at, 212.465.8200 x220.