In an effort to help independent filmmakers achieve studio-quality sound effects, the Dolby Institute, which launched last year at the Sundance Film Festival, announced Wednesday the creation of the Dolby Family Sound Fellowship, a fund meant for use on a sound-intensive feature film in post-production.

“Another Earth” director Mike Cahill is the first recipient of the award for his sophomore movie “I Origins.”

The film — which centers on a molecular biologist, played by Michael Pitt, and his lab partner, who uncover evidence that could forever change society — is screening as part of Sundance’s Premieres slate. The Dolby fellowship is awarded to Cahill to help him finish the film’s sound design and mix, which is under way at Skywalker Sound in Marin County, Calif.

“There’s never enough time and money to accomplish the vision the filmmaker has,” noted Dolby Institute director Glenn Kiser. “The director and producer are just focused on getting the movie shot, and by the time they get to sound and music, the money is usually long gone.”

Sundance provided Dolby with the short list of films to consider. The winning film was then selected by a committee from both sound design and re-recording orgs.

“(‘I Origins’) begins as an intimate, personal story and expands both visually and conceptually as it drives toward its climax,” said Cahill, whose “Another Earth” grossed $1.3 million domestically in 2011 via distrib Fox Searchlight.

“Dolby and the artists at Skywalker Sound will allow us to chart that expansion through sound in a way we never would have been able to otherwise,” Cahill said.