Yesterday at the Los Angeles Film Festival, Film Independent presented two Alfred P. Sloan grants to support films that explore science and technology themes or that depict scientists, engineers and mathematicians in engaging and innovative ways. Film Independent’s inaugural Alfred P. Sloan Distribution Grant was awarded to Experimenter, directed by Michael Almereyda and produced by Uri Singer, Fabio Golombek, Isen Robbins, and Aimee Schoof. The filmmakers will receive $50,000 in funds to support the release of the film. This is the third Alfred P. Sloan Grant for Experimenter, which previously was the recipient of the 2008 Sundance Institute Lab Fellowship and the 2009 TFI Filmmaker Fund. Experimenter had its world premiere at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and will be released by Magnolia Pictures this fall.
Additionally, the sixth annual Film Independent Alfred P. Sloan Fast Track Grant, a $20,000 production grant, was awarded to writer/director Elena Greenlee and producer Márcia Nunes for their narrative fiction film in development, Dark Forest. The project follows a hipster-millennial, equally versed in neuroscience and party drugs, as she steps out of her depth into the complex and psychedelic world of Amazonian shamanism.
Doron Weber, VP and program director at the Sloan Foundation, stated, “We are delighted to partner with Film Independent for the sixth year in a row with a $20k Fast Track production grant to Dark Forest, which explores the science of psychedelic drugs in the Amazon, and a first-ever $50k distribution grant to Experimenter, Michael Almereyda’s original, off-beat tale of the controversial social science researcher, Stanley Milgram, whose pioneering obedience experiments revealed a disturbing but abiding human truth." Film Independent president Josh Welsh echoed Weber, saying, "We are so appreciative of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and their continued support of great independent filmmaking. The new distribution grant is so exciting and provides support to filmmakers where it is critically needed.”
Experimenter joins two other completed Sloan-FIND feature films that will be released in 2015, The Man Who Knew Infinitywith Dev Patel and Jeremy Irons, and Basmati Blues with Brie Larson and Donald Sutherland.