Deeyah Khan, White Right

Current Webinar Series

The Skills That Pay the Bills:
Fundraising, Pitching, Financial Management and Proposal Writing

Join us for a four-part comprehensive series for filmmakers at every stage. Focusing on the hard skills that lead to success, including fundraising, pitching, financial management, and proposal writing, we’ll combine expert insights, practical tips, and live consultations with filmmakers – all designed to empower and boost your creative process. In each session we will tackle the challenges documentary filmmakers encounter including where and how to raise funds, how to calm one’s nerves during the big moments like pitching, best practices for financial management, and how to craft winning proposals when the film is still evolving. Whether you’re emerging, mid-career or a seasoned filmmaker, there is always more to learn. Join us as we focus on the hard skills necessary to excel and succeed in the constantly evolving dynamic realm of documentary filmmaking.

      1. Fundraising: Attracting and Securing Funding
        This session has passed. A recording will be sent with a series pass.
        Whether you have a new project or need ideas to jumpstart one that has stalled, join WMM’s Executive Director, Debra Zimmerman, as she leads us through this invaluable webinar, one of WMM’s most popular.

      2. The Winning Pitch: What Funders Really Look For
        This session has passed. A recording will be sent with a series pass
        During this webinar, led by Erika Dilday, Executive Director/Executive Producer, American Documentary, and Megan Gelstein, Co-Director / Chief Program Officer of Catapult Film Fund, we’ll explore the intricacies of perfecting a pitch, and discover the key elements that leave a lasting impression, overcoming nerves and exceeding what judges expect!

      3. How to Manage Finances: Strategies That Work!
        This session has passed. A recording will be sent with a series pass.
        This Women Make Movies webinar, led by production accountant/filmmaker/writer June Frances Coleman will take a step-by-step approach to identifying and analyzing the creative and logistical components necessary to keeping your film’s finances up to date with cost reports, production reports, 1099’s, taxes, and more.

      4. Proposal Writing: Commanding the Page
        This session has passed. A recording will be sent with a series pass. 
        In this session, led by Proposal and Grant Writer, June Chua, we’ll guide you on how to craft proposals that not only tell but vividly “show”.
      5. BONUS: Budgeting Best Practices & Strategies for Success
      6. Thursday, May 16th | 12:00 PM – 2:45 PM
        Join us for a Skills That Pay the Bills Bonus Webinar diving deep into documentary film budgeting with an award-winning filmmaker who is a master at it, Robert Bahar. 

Sign up for the series and get four sessions for the price of three! If you are a WMM filmmaker or a member of one of our partner organizations, the discount is even greater (be sure to insert the discount code before checkout)!

**If you are a WMM filmmaker or member of one of our partner organizations and do not have the promo code reach out to [email protected].

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Past Webinars Available On-Demand

Celebrating WMM Filmmakers at the Oscars: 2 Best Feature Doc Nominations

In February and March, we took a behind-the-scenes look at the Oscar campaigns of two of the five films nominated for Best Feature Documentary at the 2024 Academy Awards®: TO KILL A TIGER, a WMM Production Assistance Program film directed by Nisha Pahuja; and THE ETERNAL MEMORY, directed by WMM program alum Maite Alberdi.

On February 23rd, we talked with the women behind TO KILL A TIGER, led by director Nisha Pahuja. Her small but mighty team started with the kernel of an idea and marched it all the way to a nomination – and they shared with us how they did it! Then, on March 5th, we sat down with director Maite Alberdi and her Executive Producer Julie Goldman from THE ETERNAL MEMORY to discuss their collaboration and what it takes to be a contender. Women Make Movies is proud to celebrate all our filmmakers, including the 19 who qualified for the award, 5 who made it to the shortlist, and the 3 who were nominated for 2024 Academy Awards. Rising to the occasion can propel and expand your career in some very surprising and unforeseen ways. Don’t miss these powerful conversations!

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The Long and Short(er) Road to Funding: A Four-Part Webinar Series

A series exploring the funding journey of critically acclaimed films now celebrating broadcast or theatrical release. In each session, we took a deep dive into the filmmakers’ fundraising strategies for both production and impact campaigns. This series asked the tough questions to filmmakers who conquered grants and foundations, courageously raised funds through volunteers and social media, and pivoted and made adjustments as the moment called for it. The speakers in this series are first-time filmmakers who have been extremely successful or experienced filmmakers who have greatly increased their funding. We explored milestones that kept them going, smart budgeting that propelled them forward, and story development that directly impacted funding – in other words, the long (and at times shorter) roads to funding.

This series has ended, but the series and each individual workshop are now for sale On Demand.

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Leveraging the Power of Story to Finance Your Film

A four-part webinar series on getting your independent film financed!

A strong, compelling story about why your film matters and a well-thought-out fundraising plan are your two greatest assets when it comes to raising money for your film! In this four-part webinar series, seasoned professionals and experts in the independent film industry walked us through financing strategies and developing the story you tell about your film, including perfecting the proposal and pitch materials to get buy-in from funders and raise money! This is an excellent series for those working on their first feature, as well as experienced filmmakers looking for fresh ideas and perspectives on how the fundraising landscape has changed in independent film. 

This series has ended, but the series and each individual workshop are now for sale On Demand.

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Making Your Film Stand Out in a Crowded Market

Making your film stand out competitively in today’s media market is no easy feat! Filmmakers must begin strategizing during development, through production and distribution. In this four-part webinar series, experts in marketing, PR, sales, and film festival strategy will teach you everything you need to know about developing your release plan, building your audience, and maximizing your film’s reach.

This series has ended, but the series and each individual workshop are now for sale On Demand.

Buy Now



The Business of Film Production

A four-part webinar series on legal, accounting and business issues for independent filmmakers!

Whether you are making your first feature or are a seasoned filmmaker, this webinar series has the essential information you need to know about the business and legal side of filmmaking. These four webinars are skill-building workshops for creating the right business structure for your film production, securing various rights, establishing agreements between all entities, and tracking finances in and out of a project. Guided by experts in each field, we break down, examine, and give a rundown of the legal and financing issues you need to know about to produce your independent film.

This series has ended, but the series and each individual workshop are now for sale On Demand.

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Producing for Documentary Film

A four part webinar series on creative producing, impact and engagement, executive producing, and archival producing!

Whether you are looking for a producer, want to be a producer, or are confused by what kind of producer does what and/or what you need for your project and your team, this series is for you! 

In our constantly changing industry, the title ‘producer’ gets muddled with many descriptions. What does the work entail? How specifically do we break this down into what a producer is, does, and is credited? It’s not a catch-all by any means. And if you want to be a producer, how does one make it a sustainable career?

These four skill-building workshops on creative producing, producing for impact and engagement, executive producing, and archival producing. With experts in each field, we will break down, examine, and define what each producing bucket entails and how to make it work successfully.

This series has ended, but the series and each individual workshop are now for sale On Demand.

Buy Now 


Fundraising for Success

Fundraising for Success

A four-part webinar series on fundraising strategy, financial planning, proposal writing, and visual messaging for your film! Fundraising can seem like the most challenging part of making a film. This 4-part series brought together seasoned professionals in the documentary field to give you all the tools you need to tackle the challenge – especially in the virtual world. From creating a fundraising strategy, crafting a budget and financing plan, writing a standout proposal, and learning how to visually sell your story, we’ve got you covered! A great series for those working on their first film and experienced filmmakers looking for new ideas and learning what’s working in 2021.


These events are targeted at all levels of filmmakers. They provide networking opportunities as well as valuable and practical information about the business of filmmaking. 


WMM Production Assistance Program and Distribution Filmmakers can receive a special discount for being part of our programs. Please email [email protected] if you are in need of the promo code. Members of WMM partner organizations can receive $15 off admission of the full webinar series or $5 off individual sessions. Please contact your organization for more info.

Discount Partner Groups include:

Bay Area Video Coalition
Black Documentary Collective
Black Film Space
Black TV & Film Collective
Black Public Media
Brown Girls Doc Mafia
Catapult Film Fund
Chicana Directors Initiative
Chicken & Egg
Cinema Tropical
Diverse Filmmaker’s Alliance
Documentary Alliance of Europe
Documentary Producer’s Alliance
European Women’s Audio Visual Network
Film Fatales
Film North
Firelight Media
The Gotham
LEF New England
Meerkat Media
Mezcla Media Collective
New Orleans Film Society
NYC Women Filmmakers
Pacific Islanders in Communications
Producers Guild of America (PGA)
Scribe Video Center
She Films
Southern Documentary Fund
Sunny Side of the Doc
Third World Newsreel
Union Docs
Vision Maker Media
All chapters of Women in Film (NYWIFT, WIFVNE, etc)
Students enrolled in college or university


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