Call for Applicants: LIFT and imagineNATIVE 17th annual Mentorship Program

LIFT and imagineNATIVE
Call for applicants in Toronto

Are you an Indigenous filmmaker with a great idea for a 5-minute 16mm short?

EXTENDED DEADLINE: Monday, February 14, 2022

Celebrating 17 years of supporting independent Indigenous film, the LIFT/imagineNATIVE Mentorship program welcomes you to explore 16mm filmmaking through the Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto’s (LIFT) workshops, equipment and facilities (other mediums may be employed in addition to 16mm).

Shoot and edit your short film, with the guidance of LIFT staff and an Indigenous mentor, and see your film on the big screen at the imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival from October 18 – October 23, 2022 in Toronto! You will also have the opportunity to discuss your experience creating your iN Original on an Industry Days panel at imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival in 2022.

The successful applicant will be provided with:
– LIFT Production Membership good through October 2022
– Eligibility to enrol for free in up to $750 worth of training workshops offered during LIFT’s Winter and Summer 2022 Calendar
– Support, mentorship, and the use of 16mm production equipment from LIFT (a value of up to $2,000 in-kind)
– Mentorship from an Indigenous mentor, pending their availability
– $5,100 artist fee
– $4,000 for crew
– $2,500 for production
– $500 for on-set craft (food + beverages)

Please note: Projects must be realistic in scope and subject matter as they must be completed and transferred as a digital file by August 22, 2022.

– This call is open to Indigenous (First Nation, Métis, Inuit) candidates living in or near the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) only.
– Candidates must commit to attending the LIFT training workshops from March–August 2022. We strongly encourage applicants who are deadline-driven and self-starters.
– You must live in Toronto or within commuting distance from the city in order to access LIFT workshops and equipment. Travel subsidy and cost of living are not covered by this mentorship.

Your Application Must Include:
– Half to 1-page film treatment
– A production schedule to meet the required final deliverables deadline
Note: Print quality film stills and final synopsis will be required by July 31, 2022 for publication in the imagineNATIVE catalogue and online.
– A budget that shows your film can be completed within the scope of the mentorship and delivered to imagineNATIVE by August, 22 2022 to be included in the annual iN Originals programming at the imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival
– Your biography (no resumes or CVs please)
Note: Please be certain to indicate your past experience with film, video/digital and other artistic mediums, if any, and your Indigenous affiliation.
– Contact info, including email, mailing address and phone number
– How you found out about the mentorship
– Email applications to

For any questions, please contact Bliss Bondy at

– 5-10 minute short film to be completed and transferred as a digital file to imagineNATIVE by August 22, 2022.
– Print quality film stills and final synopsis will be required by July 22, 2022 for publication in the imagineNATIVE catalogue and online.
– Upon completion of the mentorship the Institute team will reach out for your reflections on your experience participating in this professional development opportunity.

About the Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto (LIFT)
LIFT is an artist-run charitable organization dedicated to facilitating excellence in the moving image through media arts education and production resources. LIFT exists to provide support and encouragement for independent filmmakers and artists through affordable access to production, post-production and exhibition equipment; professional and creative development; workshops and courses; commissioning and exhibitions; artist-residencies; and a variety of other services. Founded in 1981 by a small collective, LIFT has since grown to become one of the foremost centres of its kind globally.

About the imagineNATIVE Institute
The imagineNATIVE Institute is a department within imagineNATIVE that houses year-round professional development programs, events, and talks for Indigenous creatives. The Institute also presents Industry Days at the annual imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival featuring panels, masterclasses, and networking/social events. The Institute provides Indigenous-led professional development opportunities that address gaps within the industry and build capacity for Indigenous creatives. The Institute is proud to present their lead partner Netflix and their generous contribution to this initiative.



Monday 10 January 2022 – Monday 14 February 2022