Academy Film Scholars

The Academy's FilmWatch, FilmCraft and Film Scholars grants programs are on hold and will not be awarded for the 2022 cycle due to budget adjustments resulting from the COVID pandemic. We look forward to resuming these grants programs in the near future.

Academy Film Scholars grants are awarded to scholars (both academically affiliated and non-affiliated) to support significant new works of film scholarship.

Proposals must be submitted through our online application system by January 29, 2021. Under no circumstances will extensions be granted. All applicants will be notified (via e-mail) of their proposal status by May 2021.


Through the Grants program, the Academy seeks to:
  • Promote diversity
  • Bridge the opportunity divide
  • Attract and engage broad new audiences for theatrical motion pictures 
  • Provide a platform for underrepresented artists, the full range of film genres, and a variety of viewpoints and approaches 
  • Encourage filmmaking as a vocation
  • Illuminate less visible aspects of filmmaking and the film industry through scholarly research, presentations and discussions
Academy Film Scholars grants fund:
  • New English-language projects that address cultural, educational, historical, theoretical or scientific aspects of theatrical motion pictures 
Academy Film Scholars grants do not fund:
  • Individuals who are actively pursuing degrees at a college or university 
  • Members, employees and associates of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (or its affiliated organizations), or their immediate families 
  • Film, television or video productions

In order to apply:

  • Applicants must be established scholars, writers, historians or researchers possessing either a significant record of achievement, or exceptional promise and demonstrated accomplishments in his or her field.
  • Applicants must have written and published at least one book of scholarship prior to applying.
  • Each applicant must propose a new work in the English language encompassing some aspect of theatrical motion picture art, science, commerce, history or theory. Those examining elements of the film industry that have been underrepresented in the canon of film scholarship will be given priority. Works solely exploring television, video or other media arts are not eligible. 
  • Proposed works may be books, multimedia presentations, curatorial projects, interactive DVDs or Internet sites. 


Proposals must be submitted through our online application system by January 31, 2017. Under no circumstances will extensions be granted. All applicants will be notified (via e-mail) of their proposal status in April 2017.


Application Materials

In addition to the online application form, a completed application packet must include the following:

1.  A project statement, not to exceed five single-spaced pages, including endnotes and footnotes. In the statement, please:

a. Describe the proposed project clearly and concisely.

b. Define both the objective and the methodology that will be employed.

c. Place the project in academic or professional context by referring to other leading works on the topic. Describe how your project is distinguished from these works.

d. Please highlight any portion of your project that examines film industry subjects or ideas that have been underrepresented in the canon of film scholarship to date.

e. Discuss the project’s significance in its field of study.

f. Explain how your professional experience is relevant to the project.

g. Discuss the project’s significance to your own professional development.

h. Provide a timetable for completing the project.

i. Include any grants, residencies or additional resources already available to you. Describe your project and how you intend to use the Academy grant.

2.  A select bibliography of up to three pages.

3.  Your curriculum vitae, including a list of publications. 

No other supporting materials should be submitted.

Please note: The Academy reserves the right to amend the requirements and guidelines above to accommodate extenuating circumstances or other unusual situations.

Each Academy Film Scholar must:

  • Donate two copies of any physical deliverable to the Academy
  • Present the findings in lecture form at the Academy within a reasonable time frame following the publication of the work
  • Acknowledge the Academy Film Scholars program in any written materials, including interim documents, personal website content, Twitter feeds, and Instagram and Facebook posts, as well as the final deliverables
  • Mention the Academy’s support in any press interviews or social media promotions
  • Be reasonably available for press-related activities deemed important by the Academy

Please note: All grants are awarded with the understanding that the Academy has discretion over the type and degree of recognition it receives from the grant recipient, publisher or others.