×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

New York Awards Inaugural ‘Made in NY’ Grants for Female-Focused Projects

New York City has handed out its first-ever “Made in NY” grants for film, TV and theatrical projects that are driven by or focused on women.

The grants administered through the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment are part of a larger initiative across the city to support women in business ventures. MOME has awarded $1.5 million of a $5 million fund to be distributed over a three-year period and administered by New York Foundation for the Arts. It is believed to be the first gender-focused arts grants bestowed by a major city.

Out of 544 submissions, a panel of experts selected 63 projects to receive finishing grants ranging from $20,000 to $50,000. The list of recipients includes 14 stage productions, 11 documentary features and four narrative features, in addition to short films and webisodes. The selections are to be unveiled Thursday morning in a presentation at the Daryl Roth Theatre in Union Square.

Alicia Glen, New York’s Deputy Mayor of Housing & Economic Development, said the goal was to help kickstart women as entrepreneurs and creatives in the arts and entertainment sector that is so vital to New York’s economy. It’s also a response to the wave of female empowerment initiatives in the entertainment industry and frustration at the lack of real movement toward gender parity.

“Women continue to have an enormous challenge in getting the money they need to do their projects,” Glen told Variety. “That’s a challenge we have to do something about. It’s not going to happen organically, or it already would have.”

The grants are essentially “free money,” Glen added. The city makes no claim to any interest in projects supported by the program. Glen sees the money as undoubtedly paying big returns by giving a boost to a budding superstar or two who will go on to launch prosperous businesses in the city.

“We will get it back in a million different ways,” Glen said. “If they’re successful, they’ll build companies or portfolios, or work to grow our creative economy. That’s a good return on investment.”

The media marketplace has outsized impact because of the nature of the product, Glen said.

“The entertainment and creative sector itself is so diverse,” she said. “Everybody touches entertainment and media and news every single day.”

From a cultural perspective, it’s the right time to showcase projects with distinct female voices at the center. The projects selected for grants run the gamut of “very serious to super-fun,” Glen said. The breadth of material submitted for consideration was a pleasant surprise, she added. Members of the jury that selected the projects included actor Daphne Rubin-Vega and playwright Amy Fox.

“This is an exciting way to celebrate the diversity of the talent  of the women out there and the stories we have to tell,” Glen said.

(Pictured: Alicia Glen)

Popular on Variety

More Biz

  • Homecoming

    Peak Storytelling Here as Podcasts, Short Form Ride New Wave

    The concept of peak TV is nothing new. But scratch the surface of original content these days, and it’s no longer about television — from podcasts and short-form video, storytelling itself is at a peak. Thanks to audio, video and other new platform companies including Gimlet, Quibi, Wondery, iHeartMedia and Serial Box, listeners and viewers [...]

  • Patti Smith Cambridge Folk Festival

    Patti Smith Muses Over the Many Ways to Tell a Story

    It’s Sept. 11, and Patti Smith has been thinking a lot about people who died. This is understandable. It is, of course, the 18th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, and an annual time of mourning for New York City, the city that Smith adopted as her hometown 50-plus years [...]

  • Hopper Reserve

    Dennis Hopper's Dying Wish: His Own Strain of Marijuana

    Even as celebrity brands are starting to flood the emerging Cannabis market, Hopper Reserve stands out. The brand was launched by Marin Hopper, Dennis Hopper’s daughter from his marriage to Brooke Hayward. Hopper Reserve is a gram of California indoor-grown flower, two packs of rolling papers, a pair of matches and a trading card either [...]

  • Snoop Dogg Weed

    In the Cannabis Business, Not All Star Strains Are Created Equal

    With the cannabis green rush in full swing, many celebrities are jumping into the fray with their own brands, including such well-known stoners as Willie Nelson, Snoop Dogg and Tommy Chong. But as it turns out, not all star strains are created equal, so we assembled a trio of crack experts to put the product [...]

  • Richard Branson Jason Felts

    Kaaboo Festival Acquired by Virgin Fest Owner Jason Felts

    Kaaboo, which says it has “shifted the music festival paradigm by offering a highly amenitized festival experience for adults,” is now under new ownership. Virgin Fest founder and CEO Jason Felts (pictured above with Virgin founder Richard Branson) has fully acquired all of the festival brand assets through an affiliate of Virgin Fest, the music [...]

  • Live Nation Chief Michael Rapino Talks

    Live Nation-Ticketmaster Chief Michael Rapino Talks Dept. of Justice Inquiries

    Back in August, Senators Richard Blumenthal of New Jersey and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota made the most recent of several requests for an Department of Justice antitrust investigation into competition in the ticketing industry, and it soon became clear that the target of the probe was Live Nation and its 2010 merger with Ticketmaster, which [...]

  • Lowell Smokes Cafe Marijuana

    With Cannabis Lounges, On-Site Consumption, Marijuana-Infused Meals Go Legit

    Can this century’s Roaring ’20s repeat history but with pre-rolled joints instead of whiskey flasks and soccer moms as the new flappers? This month, West Hollywood will see the opening of the nation’s first at least quasi-legal cannabis consumption lounge, officially dubbed Lowell Farms: A Cannabis Café, located at 1211 N. La Brea between Fountain [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content