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Man coaching woman at microphone
Goddess of Slide (D: Alfonso Maiorana)

The first of its kind and founded by Hot Docs and the Slaight Family Foundation, this fund is dedicated to filmmakers telling engaging, high-quality stories that embrace music artists in all its forms and that demonstrate Canadian music’s role in the world. The Fund also welcomes international music stories told through the lens of Canadian filmmakers.

Applications are now open with a deadline of August 4, 2024 5pm ET.


Questions? Check our FAQs or Contact [email protected]

                     Feature Films                                  Short Films               
Amount   No-interest repayable advances for development, up to $15,000 for a maximum of 100% of the development budget.
Production grants of up to $60,000 for a maximum of 50% of the production budget.
Production grants of up to $30,000 for a maximum of 50% of the production budget
Stage Accepted    Development or Production Production or late development
Runtime 41-90 minutes 40 minutes or less

Financial Support

The Hot Docs-Slaight Family Fund will financially support 3-5 documentary projects a year with amounts ranging from $15,000 - $60,000 CAD. Successful applicants will receive creative and professional development support.


Applicants must:

  • Be a corporation unaffiliated with any licensed network or programming undertaking.
  • Be the primary rights holder of the project.
  • Be in good standing with Hot Docs by application date.
  • Have previously produced one of the following: a documentary or fiction film commercially released; a documentary or fiction film and/or series broadcast on television. The Funds will occasionally consider an applicant that does not meet this specific requirement, provided a senior producer is meaningfully attached to the project as confirmed in writing.

Projects must:

  • Be considered one of the following:
    • International production companies making films about Canadian musical artists (max. 1 per year*)
    • Canadian productions, co-pros or treaty productions making films about Canadian musical artists
    • Canadian productions, co-pros or treaty productions making films about International musical artists (max. 1 per year*)
  • Be majority owned by the applicant.
  • Be a one-off (i.e. series are not eligible)
  • Be of high quality and suitable for theatrical release, broadcast or online release to audiences.

Only a maximum of 1 project that fits within these two descriptions will be considered per granting cycle.

All projects must NOT be:

  • Proposals that are school, institute or university course work; or are TV series, web series or fiction pieces.

Eligibility for Re-Application

Submitted projects that do not receive funding may submit a maximum of one additional time only if the producers can demonstrate the project has undergone substantive progress since the initial application. Requests for resubmission must be received in writing to [email protected].

The Selection Committee may invite a project to be resubmitted. This decision is made solely by the Selection Committee. These candidates will be notified directly.

Application Requirements

The online application must be submitted in English on or before the deadline. There is no application fee. All materials received by Hot Docs are confidential.

Read the eligibility rules, guidelines and FAQ section before proceeding to the online application form.

Application Questions & Required Supporting Documents
To learn more about the application questions and required supporting documents, please review our Required Information. This information is for reference only; all applicants must complete an online application.

Selection Process

Applicants will be informed of the Selection Committee’s decision approximately four months after the submission deadline.

Successful applicants will be determined by peer-review selection committees. Applications deemed complete and eligible will be submitted to a Selection Committee made up of representatives from Hot Docs, a representative of the Slaight Family Foundation, and members of the filmmaking community including representatives with experience making music documentaries.

Decision Criteria
Applications will be evaluated based on feasibility, production ability, creative merit, audience, and fit with mandate. For more information, please review the detailed breakdown.

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