The 20th annual festival held June 9-20 in New York City is the first major film festival to be held in person since the pandemic started.
Indie Grants is a job and career training program established by the S.C. Film Commission and Trident Technical College. The program funds and produces projects by South Carolina filmmakers. Additionally, Trident Tech film students receive hands-on job training under professional crews as hands-on training.
“This is a huge deal,” Indie Grants Producer Brad Jayne said. “Only the top films are selected by Tribeca, and it shows the filmmaking skill and craftsmanship we have in South Carolina and have been able to develop through the Indie Grants program.”
The two films selected are Abducted, a tongue-in-cheek Southern thriller, and Graceland, a story about of a 10 year old who claims to be a reincarnation of Elvis. Graceland stars South Carolina native Anna Camp, whose film roles include Pitch Perfect and True Blood.
“Everyone at Indie Grants was so professional, collaborative, and really cared about making the best movie we possibly could,” Abducted director Ben Joyner said. “I’ll forever be grateful for that.”
Graceland writer and director Bonnie Discepolo’s love of theater and working with Camp goes way back to when they were 15 years old in Columbia. The then-teens created their own “lunch box theater” so that they could tell their own stories.
“Indie Grants gave us the chance to come home and make this movie in the same spirit of fun, collaboration, and community,” Discepolo said. “Getting to share our work at Tribeca and the international film community is the realization of those 15-year-old dreams.”
Submissions are currently being accepted through July 26 for Indie Grants 2021 funding cycle. Production teams with connections to South Carolina can apply at indiegrants.org.
“Indie Grants has garnered a major reputation among producers, writers, actors, and all types of crew,” said Tom Clark with the S.C. Film Commission. “This is a way for us to show off the state's talent, location, and production value to the world.”