Short Film Grants 2024 In The USA – Grants for Filmmakers

Short film grants in the USA are crucial resources for filmmakers seeking financial support to bring their creative visions to life.

These grants provide funding to cover various expenses involved in the production of short films, including equipment rental, location fees, talent fees, post-production costs, and more.

Filmmakers often rely on these grants to overcome financial barriers and turn their ideas into compelling cinematic experiences.

The year 2024 presents a wealth of opportunities for filmmakers as numerous grant-giving organizations offer funding specifically tailored to support short film projects.

These grants not only provide financial assistance but also serve as platforms for emerging filmmakers to showcase their talent and amplify their voices in the film industry.

In this article, we will explore the landscape of short film grants available in the USA in 2024.

From eligibility criteria to application processes and types of grants, we will delve into the details to help filmmakers navigate the grant-seeking process effectively.

Whether you’re a seasoned filmmaker or just starting in the industry, understanding the available grants and how to access them can significantly impact the success of your short film projects.

Join us as we embark on a journey to uncover the diverse array of short film grants awaiting filmmakers in the USA in 2024 and discover how these grants can empower you to realize your cinematic aspirations.

What Are Short Film Grants?

What Are Short Film Grants?

Short film grants are financial resources provided to filmmakers to support the production of short films.

These grants can cover various expenses involved in filmmaking, such as equipment rental, location fees, talent fees, post-production costs, and more.

These grants are typically offered by grant-giving organizations and foundations with an aim to encourage and support filmmakers in bringing their creative ideas to fruition.

Short film grants play a crucial role in providing financial assistance to filmmakers, especially those with limited budgets, enabling them to create impactful and compelling short films without the burden of financial constraints.

By offering funding opportunities specifically tailored to short film projects, these grants contribute to the diversity and vibrancy of the film industry by fostering innovation and creativity among filmmakers.

What Are The Eligibility Criteria To Qualify For Short Film Grants?

What Are The Eligibility Criteria To Qualify For Short Film Grants?

Eligibility criteria for short film grants vary depending on the grant-giving organization, but common requirements may include:

  • Filmmaker Status: Applicants may need to be emerging filmmakers or have a proven track record in filmmaking.
  • Project Stage: Grants may be available for projects at different stages of development, including pre-production, production, and post-production.
  • Genre: Some grants may be specific to certain genres or themes, such as documentary, fiction, or experimental films.
  • Budget: Grants may have restrictions on the budget size of the project, with some targeting low-budget or independent productions.
  • Geographical Location: Certain grants may be region-specific or open only to filmmakers from particular countries or regions.
  • Diversity: Some grants prioritize diversity and may specifically support underrepresented filmmakers, including women, minorities, and LGBTQ+ creators.

What Are The Documents Required To Submit For Short Film Grants Application?

What Are The Documents Required To Submit For Short Film Grants Application?

When applying for short film grants, filmmakers typically need to submit a range of documents, including:

  • Project Proposal: A detailed proposal outlining the concept, themes, and intentions of the short film project.
  • Budget Breakdown: A comprehensive budget breakdown detailing anticipated expenses for the project, including production costs, crew salaries, and post-production expenses.
  • Script or Treatment: A completed script or treatment for the short film, providing a clear outline of the story and characters.
  • Director’s Statement: A personal statement from the filmmaker explaining their vision for the project and their motivation for creating the film.
  • Previous Work Samples: Examples of the filmmaker’s previous work, such as short films, trailers, or showreels, demonstrating their skill and creativity.
  • CV or Resume: A curriculum vitae or resume detailing the filmmaker’s education, training, experience, and achievements in the field of filmmaking.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Letters of recommendation from industry professionals, mentors, or previous collaborators endorsing the filmmaker’s talent and potential.

How Do You Apply For Short Film Grants In The United States?

How Do You Apply For Short Film Grants In The United States?

The application process for short film grants in the United States typically involves the following steps:

  1. Research Grant Opportunities: Explore grant databases, film organizations, and foundation websites to identify short film grants that align with your project and eligibility criteria.
  2. Review Application Guidelines: Carefully read the application guidelines provided by each grant program to understand the specific requirements, deadlines, and submission instructions.
  3. Prepare Application Materials: Gather all required documents and materials, including the project proposal, budget breakdown, script or treatment, previous work samples, CV or resume, and letters of recommendation.
  4. Complete Application Form: Fill out the application form provided by the grant program, providing accurate and detailed information about yourself and your project.
  5. Submit Application: Submit your completed application along with the required documents by the application deadline, following the specified submission method (e.g., online submission portal, email, or mail).
  6. Wait for Review: After submitting your application, wait for the grant program administrators to review and evaluate your proposal. This process may take several weeks or months, depending on the program.
  7. Receive Notification: Once the review process is complete, you will receive a notification informing you of the status of your application. If successful, you may be awarded the grant and provided with further instructions for funding and project management.
  8. Execute Project: If awarded the grant, use the funding to execute your short film project according to the proposed plan and timeline. Be sure to fulfill any reporting or evaluation requirements outlined by the grant program.

What Are The Available Short Film Grants For Short Film Makers?

What Are The Available Short Film Grants For Short Film Makers?

  1. Austin Film Grants: The Austin Film Society awards grants ranging from $5,000 to $15,000 specifically for Texas-based filmmakers. These grants aim to support projects at any stage of production, from development to post-production. They particularly emphasize inclusivity by prioritizing women and individuals from communities of color, providing them with opportunities to bring their stories to life through film.
  2. Pare Lorentz Documentary Fund: The Pare Lorentz Grant, offering grants from $15,000 to $25,000, focuses on documentaries addressing critical issues in the United States. Open to filmmakers nationwide, this grant supports short films in various stages of production or post-production. It serves as a platform for filmmakers to shed light on important social, environmental, and cultural issues facing American society.
  3. Moving Images Institute: The Moving Images Institute provides scholarships, workshops, and support tailored to new and aspiring filmmakers. Through their programs held in major cities like Los Angeles and New York, filmmakers gain valuable insights, skills, and networking opportunities necessary for success in the industry. The institute’s initiatives aim to empower emerging talents and nurture their creativity in filmmaking.
  4. Miller Packan Film Fund: The Miller/Packan Film Fund seeks to fund documentaries that provoke thought, inspire change, and enrich society. With grants of up to $25,000 available for short film projects, they encourage filmmakers to explore non-fiction storytelling focusing on social or environmental issues. By supporting filmmakers, the fund enables impactful storytelling that drives awareness and catalyzes positive action.
  5. Creative Capital: Creative Capital offers grants of up to $50,000 for artists, including those working in documentary or experimental cinema. Their grant program provides artists with financial support and professional development opportunities to realize their creative visions. By fostering innovation and artistic expression, Creative Capital empowers filmmakers to push boundaries and explore new avenues in storytelling.
  6. The Jerome Foundation: The Jerome Foundation provides grants of up to $30,000 to filmmakers based in Minnesota or New York, particularly those in the early stages of their careers. These grants offer crucial support for production and post-production financing, enabling emerging filmmakers to bring their projects to fruition. The foundation’s commitment to nurturing local talent contributes to the vibrant cultural landscape of these regions.
  7. PBS Independent Lens: PBS offers a grant program tailored for documentaries suitable for television broadcast through their Independent Lens series. This grant opportunity provides filmmakers with funding support and access to a wide audience through national television distribution. By partnering with PBS, filmmakers can amplify their stories and engage viewers in meaningful dialogue on important social and cultural issues.
  8. Panavision New Filmmaker Program: Panavision’s New Filmmaker Program offers equipment grants for film students and low-budget filmmakers. Through this program, filmmakers gain access to high-quality camera equipment essential for bringing their creative visions to life. By removing barriers to access, Panavision empowers emerging filmmakers to realize their projects with professional-grade tools and technologies.
  9. Vision Maker Media: Vision Maker Media supports films representing Native American communities, providing funding opportunities for projects addressing contemporary issues and cultural identity. Their grant program fosters diverse voices and perspectives within the filmmaking community, highlighting the richness and complexity of Native American experiences. Through storytelling, Vision Maker Media promotes understanding and appreciation of Indigenous cultures.
  10. Sloan Science in Cinema Filmmaker Fellowship: The Sloan Science in Cinema Filmmaker Fellowship supports filmmakers who are creating films that promote science education and exploration. By offering grants and fellowships, Sloan encourages filmmakers to explore scientific topics and engage audiences in critical thinking. Through their programs, Sloan fosters a deeper appreciation for science and its impact on society.
  11. ROY W. DEAN Short Film Grants: The Roy W. Dean film grant provides funding for films making a social contribution, with a focus on independent projects with budgets of $500,000 or less. Through their grant program, Roy W. Dean supports filmmakers in bringing their stories to life, providing financial assistance and resources to realize their creative visions.
  12. Cinereach: Cinereach supports a diverse range of films in all genres, with investments ranging from $5,000 to $50,000. Their grant program offers filmmakers financial support and creative freedom to explore innovative storytelling approaches. By championing projects at various stages of development, Cinereach empowers filmmakers to create impactful and thought-provoking cinema.
  13. The Gotham: The Gotham provides funding opportunities for filmmakers through various grant programs. Their financial support and resources enable independent filmmakers to produce high-quality films that resonate with audiences. By nurturing emerging talent and supporting innovative storytelling, The Gotham contributes to the vibrant landscape of independent cinema.
  14. The Community Builders Grant: The Community Builders Grant supports filmmakers committed to promoting social change and community development through their projects. By providing financial assistance and resources, this grant empowers filmmakers to address pressing social issues and drive positive transformation within their communities.
  15. The Film Fund: The Film Fund offers cash grants for short films, providing filmmakers with financial support to bring their creative visions to life. With a rolling application process, The Film Fund offers flexibility and accessibility to filmmakers worldwide, enabling them to pursue their passion projects and share their stories with audiences.

Film Grants For Women

Film grants for women play a crucial role in promoting gender equality and empowering female filmmakers to pursue their creative aspirations.

These grants provide financial support, resources, and opportunities specifically tailored to address the challenges and barriers women face in the film industry.

By fostering inclusivity and amplifying women’s voices, these grants contribute to a more diverse and representative cinematic landscape.

  1. Women In Film: Women In Film offers a range of funding opportunities specifically for female filmmakers. Their grant programs aim to support women at various stages of their careers, from emerging talents to established professionals. In addition to financial assistance, Women In Film provides workshops, mentoring programs, and networking opportunities to help women thrive in the industry.
  2. Grants for Female Filmmakers 2023: Various grant programs specifically target female filmmakers, offering funding support for projects ranging from short films to feature-length productions. These grants recognize the importance of supporting women’s voices and perspectives in filmmaking, contributing to greater gender diversity and representation in the industry.
  3. The Film Fund: The Film Fund provides cash grants for short films, including opportunities for female filmmakers to receive financial support for their projects. By offering funding opportunities with a rolling application process, The Film Fund ensures accessibility and inclusivity, enabling women to pursue their creative endeavors without financial barriers.
  4. Creative Capital: Creative Capital offers grants of up to $50,000 for artists, including female filmmakers working in documentary or experimental cinema. These grants provide women with the financial resources and professional development opportunities needed to realize their creative visions and advance their careers in the film industry.
  5. Film Independent Spirit Awards: The Film Independent Spirit Awards offer grant opportunities specifically for female filmmakers. These grants aim to support women in independent filmmaking, providing them with the funding and recognition necessary to bring their projects to fruition and reach a wider audience.
  6. Vision Maker Media: Vision Maker Media supports films that represent Native American communities, including projects created by female filmmakers. Their grant programs provide funding opportunities for women to share their stories and perspectives, contributing to greater diversity and representation in the cinematic landscape.
  7. The Roy W. Dean Film Grant: The Roy W. Dean film grant offers funding for films making a social contribution, including projects by female filmmakers. With a focus on supporting independent projects with budgets of $500,000 or less, this grant empowers women to tell their stories and address important social issues through film.
  8. PBS Independent Lens: PBS offers a grant program for documentaries suitable for television broadcast through its Independent Lens series. Female filmmakers have the opportunity to receive funding support and national television distribution for their projects, amplifying their voices and reaching a broad audience.
  9. Panavision New Filmmaker Program: Panavision’s New Filmmaker Program offers equipment grants for film students and low-budget filmmakers, including female filmmakers. By providing access to professional-grade camera equipment, Panavision empowers women to create high-quality films and pursue their creative ambitions in the industry.
  10. Cinereach: Cinereach supports a diverse range of films in all genres, with investments ranging from $5,000 to $50,000, including projects by female filmmakers. Their grant program offers financial support and creative freedom, enabling women to explore innovative storytelling and make meaningful contributions to the cinematic landscape.

Film Grants For Minorities And Underrepresented Filmmakers

Film grants for minorities and underrepresented filmmakers play a vital role in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion within the film industry.

These grants provide financial support, mentorship, and resources specifically tailored to address the systemic barriers faced by marginalized communities.

By empowering minority and underrepresented filmmakers, these grants contribute to a more inclusive and representative cinematic landscape.

  1. Creative Capital: Creative Capital offers grants of up to $50,000 for artists, including minority and underrepresented filmmakers working in documentary or experimental cinema. These grants provide financial resources and professional development opportunities to help minority filmmakers realize their creative visions and advance their careers in the film industry.
  2. Film Grants USA: Various grant programs in the United States specifically target minority and underrepresented filmmakers, offering funding support for projects that amplify diverse voices and perspectives. These grants aim to address the lack of representation in mainstream cinema by providing resources and opportunities for filmmakers from marginalized communities.
  3. The Film Fund: The Film Fund provides cash grants for short films, including opportunities for minority and underrepresented filmmakers to receive financial support for their projects. With a rolling application process, The Film Fund ensures accessibility and inclusivity, enabling filmmakers from diverse backgrounds to pursue their creative endeavors without financial barriers.
  4. Grants for Filmmakers 2023: Grant programs for filmmakers in 2023 include opportunities specifically designed for minority and underrepresented filmmakers. These grants recognize the importance of supporting diverse voices in filmmaking and aim to provide resources and opportunities for filmmakers from historically marginalized communities.
  5. PBS Independent Lens: PBS offers a grant program for documentaries suitable for television broadcast through its Independent Lens series. Minority and underrepresented filmmakers have the opportunity to receive funding support and national television distribution for their projects, amplifying their voices and reaching a broad audience.
  6. Vision Maker Media: Vision Maker Media supports films that represent Native American communities, as well as projects created by minority and underrepresented filmmakers. Their grant programs provide funding opportunities for filmmakers from diverse backgrounds to share their stories and perspectives, contributing to greater diversity and representation in the cinematic landscape.
  7. The Roy W. Dean Film Grant: The Roy W. Dean film grant offers funding for films making a social contribution, including projects by minority and underrepresented filmmakers. With a focus on supporting independent projects with budgets of $500,000 or less, this grant empowers filmmakers from diverse backgrounds to tell their stories and address important social issues through film.
  8. Cinereach: Cinereach supports a diverse range of films in all genres, with investments ranging from $5,000 to $50,000, including projects by minority and underrepresented filmmakers. Their grant program offers financial support and creative freedom, enabling filmmakers from marginalized communities to explore innovative storytelling and make meaningful contributions to the cinematic landscape.
  9. The Community Builders Grant: The Community Builders Grant supports filmmakers committed to promoting social change and community development, with a focus on projects by minority and underrepresented filmmakers. By providing financial assistance and resources, this grant empowers filmmakers to address pressing social issues and drive positive transformation within their communities.

Types of Short Film Grants

Short film grants come in various forms, each tailored to different stages of filmmaking and specific project needs.

These grants provide filmmakers with essential support, ranging from funding for production to mentorship and distribution opportunities.

Here are some common types of short film grants available:

  1. Production Grants: Production grants provide funding specifically for the production phase of a short film. These grants cover expenses such as equipment rental, location fees, cast and crew salaries, and post-production costs.
  2. Screenwriting Grants: Screenwriting grants support the development of short film scripts. They provide funding and resources for writers to refine their ideas, develop compelling narratives, and create polished screenplays ready for production.
  3. Film Production Grants: Film production grants offer financial support for all aspects of short film production, including pre-production, production, and post-production expenses. These grants may also include funding for marketing and distribution efforts.
  4. Filmmaking Grants: Filmmaking grants encompass a wide range of support for filmmakers, including funding, mentorship, networking opportunities, and access to resources such as equipment and facilities. They aim to assist filmmakers at various stages of their careers and project development.
  5. Filmmaker Fellowship Grants: Filmmaker fellowship grants provide financial support and professional development opportunities for emerging filmmakers. These grants often include mentorship programs, workshops, and networking events to help filmmakers hone their skills and advance their careers.
  6. Documentary Filmmaking Grants: Documentary filmmaking grants focus specifically on supporting non-fiction filmmaking projects. They provide funding and resources for documentary filmmakers to research, produce, and distribute their films, often with an emphasis on social or environmental issues.
  7. Student Filmmaking Grants: Student filmmaking grants are available to aspiring filmmakers currently enrolled in film school or a related academic program. These grants support student-led projects and provide funding for production expenses, equipment rental, and other filmmaking needs.
  8. Experimental Filmmaking Grants: Experimental filmmaking grants support innovative and unconventional approaches to filmmaking. They provide funding for projects that push the boundaries of traditional storytelling and explore new techniques and artistic concepts.
  9. Short Film Competition Grants: Short film competition grants are awarded to filmmakers who submit their work to film festivals or other competitive events. These grants may include cash prizes, distribution deals, or opportunities for further development and exposure.
  10. Nonfiction Filmmaking Grants: Nonfiction filmmaking grants support the creation of documentaries and other nonfiction films. They provide funding for research, production, and post-production expenses, as well as opportunities for outreach and impact campaigns.
  11. Short Film Festival Grants: Short film festival grants support filmmakers whose work has been selected for inclusion in film festivals. These grants may cover travel expenses, submission fees, and other costs associated with participating in the festival circuit.
  12. Short Film Training Grants: Short film training grants provide funding for educational programs and workshops aimed at helping filmmakers develop their skills and expand their knowledge of the filmmaking process.
  13. Short Film Mentorship Grants: Short film mentorship grants pair emerging filmmakers with experienced industry professionals who provide guidance, feedback, and support throughout the filmmaking process.
  14. Short Film Production Services Grants: Short film production services grants provide access to resources such as equipment, facilities, and crew members to help filmmakers bring their projects to life.
  15. Movie Screenwriting Grants: Movie screenwriting grants support the development of feature-length film scripts. They provide funding and support for writers to create compelling narratives suitable for the big screen.

These diverse types of short film grants cater to the varied needs of filmmakers and support them at every stage of their creative journey, from script development to distribution and beyond.

How To Research For Short Film Grants?

Researching for short film grants requires a systematic approach to identify relevant opportunities and maximize the chances of securing funding for your project. Here are some effective strategies for researching short film grants:

  1. Utilize Online Resources: Start your search by exploring online databases, websites, and forums dedicated to listing available grants for filmmakers. Websites like GrantWatch, Film Daily, and FilmFreeway offer comprehensive databases of grant opportunities specifically tailored to filmmakers.
  2. Check Film Organizations: Look into film organizations, associations, and foundations that offer grants and funding support for filmmakers. Organizations such as the Sundance Institute, Film Independent, and the National Endowment for the Arts often provide grants for short film projects.
  3. Network with Filmmakers: Reach out to fellow filmmakers, industry professionals, and mentors to gather information about potential grant opportunities. Attend film festivals, workshops, and networking events to connect with other filmmakers and learn about their experiences with securing funding for their projects.
  4. Subscribe to Newsletters: Subscribe to newsletters and mailing lists of film organizations, funding agencies, and grant-making bodies to stay updated on new grant opportunities, deadlines, and application requirements. Many organizations send out regular newsletters with curated lists of grants and funding opportunities.
  5. Follow Social Media Channels: Follow film organizations, grant-making bodies, and industry influencers on social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. These platforms often post announcements, updates, and links to grant opportunities, providing valuable insights into upcoming funding opportunities.
  6. Consult Film Industry Publications: Keep an eye on film industry publications, blogs, and magazines for articles, features, and announcements related to short film grants. Publications like IndieWire, Variety, and Filmmaker Magazine often cover grant opportunities and funding trends in the film industry.
  7. Attend Grant Workshops: Participate in grant workshops, webinars, and informational sessions organized by film organizations and funding agencies. These workshops provide valuable guidance on the grant application process, eligibility criteria, and tips for writing successful grant proposals.
  8. Review Past Recipients: Look into the list of past grant recipients and their projects to understand the types of projects that have been successful in securing funding. Analyzing past projects can provide insights into the preferences and priorities of grant-making organizations.
  9. Consult Film Funding Directories: Explore film funding directories and guides that provide detailed information about grant opportunities, application guidelines, and contact details of funding agencies. Directories like the “Guide to Film Funding” and the “Film Fund Directory” offer comprehensive listings of film grants and funding sources.

By employing these research strategies, filmmakers can identify a wide range of short film grants and funding opportunities tailored to their project’s needs and increase their chances of securing financial support for their creative endeavors.

Conclusion

In conclusion, short film grants play a crucial role in supporting independent filmmakers and fostering creativity and diversity within the film industry.

By providing financial assistance, mentorship, and resources, these grants empower filmmakers to bring their creative visions to life and share their stories with audiences worldwide.

From production grants to mentorship programs, there are various types of short film grants available to filmmakers at different stages of their careers and project development.

By conducting thorough research and utilizing online resources, filmmakers can identify relevant grant opportunities and navigate the application process effectively.

Furthermore, short film grants not only provide funding support but also offer valuable networking opportunities, professional development, and exposure for filmmakers.

By leveraging these opportunities, filmmakers can build connections, refine their skills, and advance their careers in the competitive landscape of independent filmmaking.

In conclusion, short film grants serve as a vital lifeline for filmmakers, enabling them to realize their creative visions, amplify diverse voices, and contribute to the rich tapestry of cinema.

Through dedication, perseverance, and strategic research, filmmakers can access the resources they need to bring their stories to the screen and make a lasting impact on audiences worldwide.


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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):

What are short film grants, and why are they important for filmmakers?

Short film grants are financial resources provided to filmmakers to support the production of short films. They are crucial for filmmakers as they cover various expenses, enabling them to overcome financial barriers and turn their creative visions into cinematic experiences.

What expenses do short film grants typically cover?

Short film grants can cover a range of expenses, including equipment rental, location fees, talent fees, post-production costs, and more.

How does the year 2024 present opportunities for filmmakers in terms of short film grants?

The year 2024 offers numerous grant opportunities tailored to support short film projects, providing both financial assistance and platforms for emerging filmmakers to showcase their talent.

What are the common eligibility criteria for short film grants?

Eligibility criteria vary, but common requirements may include filmmaker status, project stage, genre, budget, geographical location, and diversity considerations.

What documents are required when applying for short film grants?

When applying, filmmakers typically need to submit a project proposal, budget breakdown, script or treatment, director’s statement, previous work samples, CV or resume, and letters of recommendation.

What is the application process for short film grants in the United States?

The application process involves researching grant opportunities, reviewing guidelines, preparing application materials, completing an application form, submitting the application, waiting for review, receiving notification, and, if successful, executing the project.

Can you provide examples of short film grants available in the USA in 2024?

Examples include Austin Film Grants, Pare Lorentz Documentary Fund, Moving Images Institute, Miller Packan Film Fund, Creative Capital, The Jerome Foundation, PBS Independent Lens, Panavision New Filmmaker Program, Vision Maker Media, and Sloan Science in Cinema Filmmaker Fellowship, among others.

Are there specific grants for women filmmakers?

Yes, there are grants specifically tailored for women filmmakers, such as Women In Film, Creative Capital, Film Independent Spirit Awards, and Vision Maker Media.

Are there grants for minority and underrepresented filmmakers?

Yes, grants for minorities and underrepresented filmmakers include those from Creative Capital, Film Grants USA, The Film Fund, PBS Independent Lens, Vision Maker Media, The Roy W. Dean Film Grant, Cinereach, and The Community Builders Grant.

What types of short film grants are available, and how do they differ?

Short film grants come in various forms, including production grants, screenwriting grants, filmmaking grants, filmmaker fellowship grants, documentary filmmaking grants, student filmmaking grants, experimental filmmaking grants, short film competition grants, nonfiction filmmaking grants, short film festival grants, short film training grants, short film mentorship grants, short film production services grants, and movie screenwriting grants.

How can filmmakers research for short film grants effectively?

Filmmakers can utilize online resources, check film organizations, network with other filmmakers, subscribe to newsletters, follow social media channels, consult film industry publications, attend grant workshops, review past recipients, and explore film funding directories for comprehensive research.

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