Application Form and Guidelines

FILM 5 Application Guidelines 2013

FILM 5 Application Form 2013

Budget Template (amended from Telefilm budget)

FILM 5 Info Session & Quick Pitch

Wednesday July 31st, 6pm
Wednesday Aug. 21st 6pm
AFCOOP Office, 5663 Cornwallis Street, Suite 101
Come find out more about the program and meet with potential writers, directors and producers.


FILM 5 is a professional film-training program for Writers, Directors and Producers culminating in the opportunity to produce a five-minute film.

The cornerstones of FILM 5 are professional, creative, and project development. The principle objectives are:

  1. To provide emerging Writers, Directors and Producers with training and mentorship designed to enhance their abilities while preparing them to pursue larger scale production opportunities (specifically feature film projects).
  2. To provide training and mentorship that bridges the gap between the completion of basic training and the launch of a career in the film industry.
  3. To assist with the creation of up to four high-quality short films that will perform at the national level, and which can be used by the filmmakers to advertise their abilities.
  4. To provide aspiring technical crew with classroom and on-set training.

FILM 5 delivers on these objectives through a unique combination of classroom learning, mentorship from professional filmmakers and administrative support. Participants are challenged to create well-executed, innovative short films while acquiring the skills necessary to meet the practical realities of professional film production.

Relationship with AFCOOP

All FILM 5 productions are made under the supervision of the Atlantic Filmmakers Cooperative and the FILM 5 Core Support Team consisting of the Supervising Producer, Producer Mentor, Writer Mentor, Director Mentor, and Post-production Supervisor. All productions will be produced in accordance with the approved shooting script and locked budget.

Participant Eligibility

  • Teams must consist of a Director, Writer and Producer. A Director or Producer may also be the Writer. A Director cannot be the Producer.
  • All Team members must have completed basic film training. The training may have been completed through a post-secondary institution, a filmmaking cooperative, artist-run centre or on the job.
  • All Team members must have held a key creative role (Director, Producer or Writer) on a film or video work that was created outside of film school or basic training.
  • One or more Team members must have held a key creative role (Director, Producer or Writer) on a film or video work which has been exhibited in a professional context (i.e. a juried / curated screening, acquired for broadcast etc. This does not include student screenings).
  • FILM 5 is a program for emerging filmmakers who are still interested in and in need of training. Team members will be considered over-qualified if they: A) have held the same key creative role on a feature film that has been produced with the participation of Telefilm or Film NS, B) have been active as a narrative filmmaker for over 10 years (this doesn’t include an experimental or documentary filmmaker switching over to narrative) or C) make their living working in an above the line position (Producer, Writer, Director).
  • Full time students (undergraduate or graduate level) are not eligible to apply.
  • At least one Team member must be a Full Member of AFCOOP before applying to the Production Phase of the program.
  • Past participants of the Production Phase are ineligible to apply, unless applying in a different discipline (i.e. former Director now applying as Producer).
  • All Team members must be residents of Nova Scotia and Canadian citizens.
  • Members of the Board of Directors of the Atlantic Filmmakers Cooperative are not eligible to apply.

Terms of FILM 5 Productions

  • Productions must have a finished running time of no less than four and no longer than six minutes plus credits.
  • Productions are to be shot over a period of two days in March or April 2014.
  • Documentary and animated projects are ineligible.
  • Productions can seek funding from external sources, however the Team must retain full ownership and creative control of the project. External funding cannot exceed $10,000.00 cash.
  • Productions are made under the direction of the Core Support Team (Supervising Producer, Producer Mentor, Writer Mentor, Director Mentor and Post-production Supervisor) and are subject to final approval.
  • Crews must consist of a minimum of seven trainees from the FILM 5 Trainee Program and a minimum of three paid industry keys.
  • AFCOOP will retain a copy of the finished project to be used for educational programming and other non-commercial exhibition, as well as promotional material for the FILM 5 Program.


Program Structure


Phase I – Project Development (October 2013 – December 2013)

Up to eight Teams will be accepted into the Project Development Phase of the program. Teams will attend weekend workshops designed to assist them in the development of their projects.

Each Team member must participate in the workshops applicable to his or her role. Only Teams who have participated in the required workshops will be eligible to apply to Phase II.


Phase II – Production (January 2014 – August 2014)

Up to four Teams will be accepted into this phase of the program. Only Teams who have successfully completed Phase I are eligible to apply. Teams accepted into this phase of the program will enter pre-production with the understanding that getting the final green-light to go ahead with their production is contingent upon the approval of their final proposal.

During this period Teams will receive further training and mentorship while adhering to a schedule of deliverables, leading up to a final proposal package. Each Team will present their final proposal plans to the FILM 5 Core Support Team who will assess the project’s readiness to go ahead with production.


Approved Teams will receive $7,500 in cash and over $25,000 in services to complete a five-minute film. They will complete a two-day shoot in March or April 2014, and see their projects through post-production to final delivery of a release print or digital finish.

Participant Commitment

FILM 5 runs from October 2013 through August 2014. Once accepted, participants can expect to make a considerable time commitment to both the program and to the development of their projects.

It is important to note that FILM 5 is a training program, not a funding program. As participants in a training program, Teams are required to complete a schedule of workshops and courses intended to provide them with the necessary skills to complete their productions. Workshops and courses are held on weekends and weeknights. Failure to attend mandatory workshops may result in the Team’s removal from the program.

Teams are required to work closely with the Mentors provided by the program. They will meet with the Supervising Producer on a regular basis to plan their projects. Teams are required to adhere to a rigorous schedule of deliverables and to provide the Supervising Producer with any and all materials that may be requested. Failure to do so may result in removal from the program.

Team members are required to meet with their Mentors on a minimum of three separate occasions and to participate in a rigorous development process. The purpose of these meetings is to assist with production planning, trouble-shooting and overall project development. Failure to meet with Mentors may result in the Team’s removal from the program.


Each member of the selected Teams will be responsible for a tuition fee. Tuition is $300 per Team member for both the first and second phase of the program. The maximum tuition is $600 per Team member. These fees are to be paid to AFCOOP within 3 weeks of being accepted into either phase of FILM 5.

Please note: the $300 tuition includes all workshop fees, mentorship, and a free AFCOOP Associate Membership.


Selection Criteria

All applications will be assessed for completeness and eligibility. Incomplete applications will be rejected. Applications that are received after the 5pm deadline on Monday, September 9, 2013 will be rejected.

Applications will be reviewed by a three-person jury made up of members of the local film community. Applications will be assessed based on the following criteria:

1.     Creative potential of project

  • The originality and quality of the script
  • Innovation and clarity of the Director’s vision
  • Scripts must be thematically suitable for a five-minute film

2.     The Team’s suitability to the program

  • FILM 5 is an intermediate-level training program. Teams must be at a stage in their development where they can benefit from the training and mentorship offered by the program.
  • Professional development and creative development are cornerstones of FILM 5. Team members must be committed to developing as filmmakers and serious about pursuing a future in filmmaking.
  • Teams must be committed to developing their proposed projects.
  • Team members must be committed to building working relationships amongst themselves, with program administrators, mentors and their film crews.

3.     Project Feasibility

When assessing project feasibility, the jury will consider the following:

  • Capacity for the full creative potential of the script to be realized within the budgetary and time constraints of the program.
  • Scripts should not propose technical needs beyond what is generally available (i.e. complicated crane and dolly shots, or special effects).
  • As a training film, scripts should limit the use of challenging themes or situations (i.e. stunts, animals, multiple extras, extreme violence or excessive nudity).


To apply to the Project Development Phase of FILM 5 please submit one unbound (no staples) copy of your complete application package and four copies of your demo reel DVD.

Applications must include:

  1. $25 Application Fee (cheque made out to AFCOOP or cash/credit/debit in the office)
  2. Application Form completed and signed
  3. Script (5-7 pages)
  4. Letter of Intent from each Team member
  5. Director’s Treatment (one page max.)
  6. Budget in Telefilm format (see amended FILM 5 template)
  7. Filmography and Resume for each Team member
  8. DVD demo Reel or Support Films – 4 copies



Budget Information


Use the following as a guide to the resources provided by FILM 5. Please note: all sponsorships are subject to confirmation and are non-transferable.

Cash $7,500

In Kind Services:
Camera equipment $5,000
Lighting and grip equipment $5,000
Misc equipment  (any equipment rented from AFCOOP) $1,000
Video / sound on-line post production $10,000

TOTAL   In Kind $21,000

TOTAL Cash $7,500


Please note that you may choose to shoot on film (35mm or 16mm) or digitally.  If you choose to shoot on film the program has discounted rates with Kodak and Cinelab to help make this choice affordable.

—- Questions? Call 902.405.4474 Email

Training is made possible through the generous support of Film and Creative Industries Nova Scotia.

FILM 5 is presented with the participation of Telefilm Canada.