Skip to content
30 Jan – 9 Feb 2025

Development Support (Script and Project)

A Development Support 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.

Film still: Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (2010) dir. Apichatpong Weerasethakul

The maximum contribution for Script and Project Development is €10,000.

The resubmission of projects previously not selected for funding is by invitation only. 

  • Regulations and selection criteria

    Please note the latest additions to the regulations (updated June 2024):

    • If a project has a producer attached and gets preselected, the submitted project dossier must include details on IP ownership and/or deal memo.
    • A project is not eligible for HBF Development funding if it already has received two or more selective public financing grants (for development) and if it already has selective production funding attached. One applicant is allowed to submit a maximum of two projects per annual funding round, but only one of those will be possibly pre-selected and selected.
    • One applicant is allowed to submit a maximum of two projects per annual funding round, but only one of those will be pre-selected and selected.
    • If an applicant considers that making of the submitted project is associated with high stake threats in relation to any kind of freedom of expression and dangers of limiting artistic voice, such context needs to be well articulated and positioned in the application. Any need for extra confidentiality around the application needs to be flagged to the HBF team and each case will be treated on an individual basis.
    • 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.
    • The HBF has a strong focus on first- and second time filmmakers, but also accepts applications from more advanced filmmakers.
    • 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.
  • Procedure for applying

    Deadline for 2024: 10 July

    The selection procedure for Script and Project Development 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. 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 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 four 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.
    • 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 now also finances international film projects with a contribution in the Development scheme. Therefore, the HBF is empowered to support five more projects each year within the Script and Project Development scheme. This NFF+HBF Co-development scheme complements the existing successful NFF+HBF Co-production scheme, which already supports Dutch minority co-productions for over 10 years.

    How does it work? After the Hubert Bals Fund has selected the projects for the Script and Project Development scheme, the projects among the selection with the most co-production potential will be supported by the NFF+HBF Co-development scheme. However, the handling will be done by the HBF and the conditions, selection procedure and awarded grant aren’t different.

  • Distribution

    The HBF asks for a few things in return for its support, after a supported film is finished. Firstly a front credit with the Hubert Bals Fund logo in the film. Besides this, the World, International or Benelux premiere of the film should take place at International Film Festival Rotterdam, and no screening fees should be charged.