ACTION! Narrative Apprenticeship Program Launches at NWFF for Filmmakers who are BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and/or Living with a Disability

April 11, 2022

Inaugural Year Supported by Butler Family Foundation, with Equipment Support from Foundry10

April 11, 2022 – An initiative of Seattle’s Northwest Film Forum (NWFF), the ACTION! Narrative Apprenticeship Program is now in its first year, generously supported by the Butler Family Foundation, with equipment from Foundry10. The program is geared towards BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and artists living with a disability for whom on-set experience on narrative film sets has historically been difficult to access at intermediate and professional levels.

“ACTION! is an amazing program that allows NWFF to connect filmmakers form BIPOC, LGBTQIA2S+, and people with disabilities with working professionals, to create a cohort-driven short film,” says NWFF’s Education Director Derek Edamura.

ACTION! is modeled after NWFF’s RGPro Apprenticeship Program, which pays mentors and apprentices to create productions together on feminist film sets, with the apprentices leading the creative vision.

“Working on local sets, it’s become extremely apparent that diverse filmmakers with talent are lacking paid opportunities to get intermediate-level experience on narrative film sets,” says the program’s writer-director mentor, Vee Hua. “We hope that ACTION! is one small step to creating better workforce pipelines through NWFF’s tried-and-true mentorship model.”




The inaugural year of the Narrative Apprenticeship Program will take a script from concept through production and post-production, to create a final finished short film that is a collaboration between mentors and apprentices. All members of the cohort will come from a community historically underrepresented or underresourced in film.

Available roles are as follows:


Five (5) apprentice roles will be available during the Pre-Production and Production stages and will be compensated at a rate of $25 / hour. Must be available between May 16 and June 26; please see timeline below. (* Note: Writer / Director will also play a role during the Post-Production phase, and must be available through August 3.)

  • Producer (estimated 30 hours)
  • Writer / Director * (estimated 45 hours)
  • Cinematographer (estimated 30 hours)
  • Gaffer / Grip (estimated 24 hours)
  • Production Sound (estimated 24 hours)

Three (3) apprentice roles will be available for Post-Production stages, and will be compensated at a rate of $25 / hour. Must be available between June 29 and August 3.

  • Editor (estimated 20 hours)
  • Sound Editor (estimated 20 hours)
  • Color (estimated 20 hours)


Seven (7) mentor roles will mirror apprentice roles for Post-Production, Production, and Post-Production, with similar hours. Mentors will be compensated at a rate of $50 / hour. (* Note: Writer / Director mentor role has been filled.)

  • Producer (estimated 30 hours)
  • Cinematographer (estimated 30 hours)
  • Gaffer / Grip (estimated 24 hours)
  • Production Sound (estimated 24 hours)
  • Editor (estimated 20 hours)
  • Sound Editor (estimated 20 hours)
  • Color (estimated 20 hours)

Artists, mentors, and apprentices who identify as BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, Person of Color), living with a disability, femme, gender non-conforming, LGBTQ+, undocumented, and/or live in unincorporated King County are strongly encouraged to apply.




  • Monday, April 11, 2022 at 9:00am PST – Applications open for mentors and apprentices
  • Friday, April 22 at 11:00am – 12:00pm PST – Info Session (will be recorded for later viewing) – RSVP HERE
  • Sunday, May 8 at 11:59pm PST – Application closes
  • Monday, May 9 – Finalists notified
  • Monday, May 9 – Tuesday, May 17 (Weekdays) – Conversational interviews with mentor finalists and apprentice finalists
  • Friday, May 20 – Final mentor and apprentice cohort selected and notified

Within each production phase, exact dates and times of meetings will be arranged with each cohort and mentor-apprenticeship based on availability and schedule. Mentors and apprentices can expect weekly small group check-ins as well as occasional large group meetings.

  • Monday, May 23 – Friday, June 24
  • Tuesday, July 5 & Wednesday, July 6
    • Pre-Production Phase (exact schedule TBD)
    • Average meetings of 2.5 hours a week
    • (Break from June 25 through July 4)
  • Thursday, July 7 & Friday, July 8
    • Film Production Prep Days
    • Average of 6-8 hour days
  • Saturday, July 9 & Sunday, July 10
    • Film Production Days (all day)
    • Average of 10-12 hour days
  • Wednesday, July 13 – Wednesday, August 17
    • Post-Production Phase (exact schedule TBD)
  • Thursday, September 15 – Sunday, September 25
    • Local Sightings Film Festival for film premiere, screening, and discussion (exact date TBD)



For full guidelines, application form, and more information about Northwest Film Forum’s ACTION! Narrative Apprenticeship Program, please visit


A modern browser is required to view this site.

Please update your browser.

Northwest Film Forum
1515 12th Ave,

Seattle, WA 98122

206 329 2629

Notify me when new films, events, and workshops are coming up!