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Download the Prenups


More and more, filmmakers need financing and support to tell the stories that can open eyes and minds, humanize how to buy shares of google tough issues and show us what’s really how to invest in microsoft going on in the world. A new generation of "engaged" funders and investors recognize that powerful documentaries can help advance social causes. Some policy watchers and advocates believe that films are a "must" for getting people involved in change efforts.

So why do some funder/maker/advocate relationships thrive, while others have decidedly mixed results?

That's the question that sparked The Prenups. Informed by dozens of candid, anonymous interviews and Active Voice's 10+ years of experience as an intermediary, these questions, ideas and observations are designed to help all parties forge more productive relationships and avoid many of the common obstacles that hold projects back. The result? Better how to invest in microsoft shares communication, clearer roles and more time to focus on making powerful media to help solve the world's problems.

The Prenups is supported by a grant from




To jumpstart the Prenups conversation, Active Voice has invited a handful of highly respected organizations that serve filmmakers, grantmakers and nonprofits to weigh in on the issues and help improve these guidelines.

Read more >

See who has helped us so far >


This "working" site features highlights from the downloadable Prenups Guide. The interactive features are short-term so speak now or forever hold your peace!


Our research shows that clear communication of goals and strategy is critically important to grantees and funders. The Prenups could really lay the groundwork to enable clearer and more consistent communication over the course of a relationship.

- Kevin Bolduc, Vice President - Assessment Tools, The Center for Effective Philanthropy

There's nothing more effective than a good story to seed a social change movement. The Prenups will provide tools to enable funders to support the creation of media that can deepen the impact of diverse initiatives.

- Wendy Levy, Director of Creative Programming, Bay Area Video Coalition

There’s a lot of confusion and expectations on the part of both filmmakers and funders when making films. The Prenups provide a way to discuss the many issues that surface as these relationships evolve. And they give some great examples about what those relationships might look like.

- Jack Walsh, Co-Director, The National Alliance for Media Arts and Culture

What you’re doing is important and should be of great use to many people. There’s a worn saying in philanthropy that execution trumps strategy. This is especially true with media – too many good ideas and promising projects end up on the cutting room floor because of poor communications. Hopefully the Prenups will help change that.

- Adam Coyne, Director of Public Affairs, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
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