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In preparation for the Big Picture Film Festival 2019, one Greater Peoria filmmaker will be awarded $3,000 in funding to create their film of any genre in Summer 2019!


Email a PDF of your proposal to by April 15th!  In your email, please include your full name, address in Greater Peoria, and the link to your previous film. The subject line should be FILM GRANT APPLICATION—your last name.


Stay tuned to our social media for the announcement of the winner on May 10th!


  • One filmmaker can apply per film

  • The filmmaker must be age 16-36

  • The filmmaker must reside in Greater Peoria for part of the year

  • Production or post-production must happen in Central Illinois

  • The film must be a short film up to 20 minutes long

  • The film must be completed between May 5-August 15, 2019

  • The filmmaker must present their film at a special  screening at the festival, along with a Q&A

  • The filmmaker must visit Peoria Public Schools one time to talk to kids about being a filmmaker

  • The filmmaker must meet with the Big Picture Film Festival program director once in June or July to report on the status of the film

  • The Big Picture Initiative and funding organizations must be listed in the credits


Please answer the following questions:

(in 150 words or less per answer)

1. What is your film project?

2. What is your film's budget? Please attach a budget plan, including what you will pay yourself.

3. What is your project timeline?

4. Who is part of your crew? Please include short bios for key crew members.

5. Where will production and post-production take place?

6. Please provide a link to one of your previous films or videos.


  • If I am not from Greater Peoria, but I go to school in Peoria, can I apply? 


Yes! As long as you live in Greater Peoria for part of the year and production or post-production happens in Central Illinois. 


  • What kind of films are you looking for?


Any genre! There will be a panel of judges deciding who will win the grant, so pick a story that you are passionate about and make sure you express that in your proposal. 


  • I've never made a budget...where do I start? 


Check out the budget template! Make sure to include money for yourself, as we know you will be spending a lot of time making the film and you should be compensated for it. 


  • If I win, do I get the $3,000 all at the beginning? 


No, you will get 1/3 of the grant at the beginning, then you will have to check in with the program director in June or July to receive the next 1/3 of the grant. When you complete your film by the deadline, you will receive the last 1/3 of the grant. 


  • I live in Bloomington, Illinois. Does that count as Greater Peoria? 


Sorry, but no. Greater Peoria consists of Peoria, Tazewell, Woodford, Mason, and Logan County.


  • Can two people apply for the grant together? 


Sorry, but no. Two people can make the film, but only one person can apply per film. There can be strong partnerships in making the film with other people, but one person must be accountable for the grant and requirements. 


  • I have never made a film before, can I still apply?


Yes! You can still apply. If you have worked on a video, podcast, or another piece of work that shows your experience level and your artistic viewpoint, please include that instead of your past film. Don't be afraid to admit you are a first time filmmaker in your proposal, but tell us a little about your crew and plan in your proposal to let us know how you will be successful!

  • I have a question that wasn't answered. 


Please send your question to with the subject line "Question About Grant."

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