Script and Project Development Support

A Script and Project Development grant can be used for the further development of a script (e.g. research, writing, translation or hiring a coach or script consultant), but can also be used to present a project to financiers or other potential partners at (international) co-production meetings or film festivals. The maximum contribution for Script and Project Development is €10,000. For upcoming deadlines, please see here. The entry form for Script and Project Development will be online at least two weeks before the deadline. 

Sub Categories 

HBF Script and Project Development support works with two separate calls for proposals: 

  • HBF Script and Project Development Bright Future (max. €10,000 per project): a special call for filmmakers working on their first or second narrative feature film. Applications can be submitted twice a year and go through a preselection process first. Deadlines: 1 March and 1 August.
  • HBF Script and Project Development Voices (max. €10,000 per project): a special scheme for feature films by filmmakers more advanced in their career. Selection criteria include verifiable interest from potential co-producers, sales agents and/or distributors. Deadlines: 1 April and 1 September.

Regulations & Selection Criteria

Although the fund has no rigid rules and individual projects are judged on their own merits, there are limits to the field in which the Hubert Bals Fund operates.

  • The HBF provides support to talented filmmakers who live and work in countries listed on the HBF list of eligible countries
  • The HBF also provides support to feature films by filmmakers from an eligible country, who are living in diaspora (e.g. dual nationality, refugee status or residency permit) in a non-eligible country. Please note priority is given to films that are majority shot in an eligible country.
  • Information on the required information/materials can be found here.
  • Applications should be written in English.
  • The prime consideration of the selection committee are the artistic qualities of applications.
  • For the fund to participate in a project, there should be a strong possibility that the rest of the financing can be found.
  • The fund is restricted to the support of narrative feature films. Shorts and films specially made for television are not taken in consideration.
  • Due to the high number of applications for this category, projects can only be considered once. Projects can only be re-applied upon invitation by the HBF. 
  • Due to the small number of projects the HBF can support, new projects by filmmakers we have previously supported can only be accepted if the first project has been completed (i.e we cannot support two concurrent applications by the same director).
  • The selection committee's decisions cannot be appealed.

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Procedure for Bright Future category

The selection procedure for Script and Project Development: Bright Future applications are divided into two phases, for a more efficient process and quicker answer.

Phase 1 

  • Please read the HBF Regulations carefully.
  • The application form will be available at least two weeks prior to the deadline and can be accessed through your personal account. If you do not have an account yet, make sure to register first. It will make the process easier. This form will allow you to include detailed project information. You can save the form without submitting it while filling it out. For an overview of what information is requested, see here.
  • It is not possible to edit the form after you have submitted it.
  • The HBF selection committee will reach a decision on all submitted forms about six weeks after the deadline. The pre-selection results will be announced via e-mail. It is not possible to appeal the committee’s pre-selection decisions. 

Phase 2

  • If your project has been pre-selected, you are given one week to submit your full dossier (PDF or Word) by email, including previous work (online streaming). It is not possible to extend this one week period. For more details please see here.

Procedure for Voices category

As of the 1 September 2018 deadline, the selection procedure for Script and Project Development: Voices will no longer consist of two phases, but of only one. Submitted projects don’t have to go through the preselection process anymore.

  • Please read the HBF Regulations carefully.
  • The application form will be available at least two weeks prior to the deadline and can be accessed through your personal account. If you do not have an account yet, make sure to register first. It will make the process easier. The application form will allow you to include detailed project information. You can save the form without submitting it while filling it out. For an overview of what information is requested, see here.
  • In this form, you are also requested to submit your mandatory project dossier directly (Word or PDF), including previous work (online streaming). For an overview of what information in the project dossier is requested, see here.
  • You can save the form without submitting it while filling it out. It is not possible to edit the form after you have submitted it.
  • The HBF selection committee will reach a decision on all submitted projects within three months after the application deadline.

The NFF+HBF Co-development Scheme

The Netherlands Film Fund is one of the financiers of the HBF's Script and Project Development category. This collaboration has been named NFF+HBF Co-development Scheme and complements the existing successful NFF+HBF Co-production scheme, which supports the Dutch minority co-producers of projects previously supported in the Script and Project Development category with a production contribution. After the Hubert Bals Fund has selected the projects for the Script and Project Development scheme, the NFF+HBF Co-development funding will be allocated to the projects with the highest Dutch co-production potential. The grants are handled by the HBF, and the conditions, selection procedure, and the awarded amount are those of the HBF's Script and Project Development scheme.

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Frequently asked questions About the Hubert Bals Fund