Interested in getting support for your project?

Media Fund

The next deadline for R&D funding is - July 7, 2017, by 5pm HST. The application is available here.

Media Fund has four funding calls per year:

  • Two R&D funding deadlines are usually scheduled for January and July.
  • Two Production and Completion deadlines are usually scheduled for April and October.

Updates on deadlines occur regularly, you should check this section of our website periodically for specific dates or sign up for our newsletter to receive announcements.

The following sections will cover information you should know before applying to the Media Fund:

Whether you are new to the Media Fund or not, we strongly suggest you read through all sections as policies and processes may have recently changed. However, you can skip to various sections at any time by clicking on the above links.  



PIC’s Independent Review Panel considers the following issues when reviewing projects for funding:

  • Compelling storytelling.
  • Accurate and authentic representation of the Pacific Islander experience.
  • Programs that shed light on the Pacific Islander experience.
  • Programs that provoke thoughtful dialogue about the subject.
  • Knowledge and understanding of the subject as well as a thoughtful and sensitive approach.
  • Programs to be shown on national public television.
  • Programs in the R&D, Production, and Completion (Post-Production) phases.
  • Effective production and fundraising plans.
  • Competent creative and production teams that can complete the program within budget and on schedule.
  • Programs in which Pacific Islanders hold key creative or production positions.
  • Programs that adhere to PBS standards of objectivity and balance.
  • Single non-fiction programs of standard broadcast length [56:46 or 26:46; in rare cases, when the story warrants it, PIC will consider feature-length programs] in accordance with PBS broadcast specifications. For narrative programs, please read more about PIC's Short Film Showcase.


ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS: Who's Eligible and Who's Not 

Who Is Eligible

Independent producers or entities producing television, film, or video programming are eligible to apply providing they follow these guidelines.

Applicants must:

  • Hold artistic, budgetary, and editorial control and must own the copyright to the proposed project.
  • Be at least 18 years of age and be citizens or legal residents of the United States or its territories.
  • Have previous film or television experience as demonstrated by the sample work.
  • Provide a video sample that demonstrates their ability to tell a story through the visual medium.

Who Is Not Eligible

Applications with the following criteria will not be eligible for funding:

  • Programs that are not standard broadcast length [56:46 or 26:46; in rare cases, when the story warrants it, PIC will consider feature-length programs] in accordance with PBS broadcast specifications.
  • Programs in which the exclusive broadcast rights for the US and its territories are not available.
  • Programs intended solely for theatrical release or that are commercial in nature.
  • Thesis projects or student films which are co-owned or solely owned or copyrighted, or otherwise editorially or fiscally controlled by the school.
  • Producers or production entities that are foreign-based, owned, or controlled.
  • Industrial and promotional projects.
  • Producers who are current signatories of a PIC-funded project may not enter into a new PIC contract until final delivery on their previous program is approved.


FUNDING CONTRACT TERMS:  What to Expect with PIC Funding

Media Fund is not a grant. It is an exclusive four-year public television broadcast rights license for the US and its territories. Whether you are applying for R&D, Production or Completion funding, producers will need to enter into a license agreement for these rights. The license agreement requires that the producer adhere to a schedule of deliverables and meet PBS technical specifications and editorial standards. 

If awarded, the producer agrees to complete the program according to the proposed timeline, project description, and budget, and agrees to receive regular feedback from PIC in good faith. The producer also retains a percentage of net revenues from ancillary distribution and shares with PIC a pro-rata percentage of net revenues of net distribution income.



Do I need a lawyer to review the PIC contract?

PIC strongly encourages producers to have their lawyer review the contract. PIC’s funder, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), dictates the bulk of the contractual requirements that pertain to broadcast rights and revenue sharing. These requirements are non-negotiable.

Do I have to be a Pacific Islander to apply for this award?

No. PIC funds authentic, well-told stories about the Pacific Islander experience. It is strongly suggested that all filmmakers, Pacific Islander and non-Pacific Islander, who were not raised in the culture whose story they are telling, form a cultural panel or hire cultural consultants to ensure accuracy when depicting the cultural elements of the story.

Who is considered a “Pacific Islander”? Are Filipinos (or Indonesians, Malaysians, et al.) Pacific Islanders?

PIC is interested in stories of the Pacific and the Pacific Islander experience in particular. For the purposes of the Media Fund, “Pacific Islander” is defined as one whose ancestors were the indigenous people of Polynesia, Micronesia, or Melanesia—in particular, Hawai‘i, American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands. If the project is specifically Filipino, Indonesian, etc. in subject matter, contact the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) at (415) 863-0814 or visit their website at caamedia.org.

If I am not a U.S. citizen, can I still apply?

In order to be able to receive funding from PIC, the applicant must either be a U.S. citizen or a legal resident and must be the producer of the proposed project. PIC is not allowed to disburse monies to foreign production companies or non-legal residents.

Who are the reviewers and how is the proposal reviewed?

The Independent Review Panel is composed of cultural experts, academics, national public television administrators, and/or independent producers. Panelists may change each year, but the award criteria remain the same. An effective proposal is comprised of a compelling story, concept, or treatment; an experienced production team; a reasonable, factual budget; and a solid sample work. The panel is always looking for innovative material. One word of caution: find out if a similar proposal has been recently produced or funded by PIC in the past. If it has, the chances of receiving funding are reduced.

If applying for Production or Completion funding, what if I am awarded and do not have all my funding in place?

PIC requires that producers have raised not less than 50% of the total project budget for Production funding. If a producer has not raised this percentage of the budget, PIC requires that a deal memo be signed within three months of the award notice. This deal memo secures the funding for the project so that additional fundraising can take place. If additional funding has not been secured within six months of the date of the deal memo, PIC has the option to forfeit the award. For Completion funding, PIC requires that producers have raised not less than 80% of the total project budget. If a producer has not raised this percentage of the budget, the project will not be qualified for Completion funding.


Before Applying

Please contact PIC staff at mediafund@piccom.org.