The principal mandate of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association is philanthropy. Grant recipients of the HFPA fall in four major areas: nurturing the development of young artists in film and television through support for scholarships, fellowships and education; preserving the culture and history of motion pictures by supporting film preservation. The Association promotes cultural exchange and understanding through our support for major programs and exhibitions that utilize film to ignite critical dialogue and we also support special projects, educational and cultural activities connected with the entertainment industry. Lastly, the HFPA supports organizations worldwide assisting with disaster relief, refugee assistance and other humanitarian causes.
The HFPA began giving grants as early as 1989 to institutions such as the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), University of Southern California (USC) and the American Cinematheque, which continue to receive support today. The HFPA has created endowments at Los Angeles colleges and universities to help underserved students such as Los Angeles Community College and California State University, Northridge.
Over the last 25 years, the HFPA has donated $37.5 million to entertainment-related nonprofit organizations, academic programs, and humanitarian organizations, provided more than 1,500 scholarships to college students, and funded the restoration of over 125 classic films. This year, licensing from the Golden Globe Awards has allowed the HFPA to donate over $6 million to 74 nonprofits and colleges that assist diverse filmmakers and students interested in filmmaking, film preservation, journalistic organizations committed to free speech.
The HFPA also believes it is important to foster connections among the non-profit community and this year representatives from 46 of our Grantee organizations joined in the third Grantee Mixer. The annual event was the brainchild of HFPA Grants Officer Sandra Cuneo to promote ties of mutual cooperation between organizations, where grant recipients can meet, discuss the issues they are facing and network to find solutions to common problems.
This year’s event was again hosted by Film Independent whose sunlit Mid-City offices were buzzing as representatives of 46 organizations chatted over coffee and waited for the program to begin. HFPA Grants Officer Sandra Cuneo got things underway welcoming our guests and introducing HFPA president Lorenzo Soria who reiterated our commitment to the philanthropy program. Grantee representatives then proceeded to highlight the programs of each respective organization, from small-scale neighborhood-based services like the Echo Park Film Center and Central LA’s A Place Called Home, to legacy partners like Film Independent that partners with the HFPA on our Emerging Film Makers Residency program, which each year brings six young filmmakers to Los Angeles for a three-week in-depth program. Hollywood’s American Cinematheque has also been a longstanding partner. The HFPA has bestowed numerous grants including for the restoration of the historic Egyptian theater, the building of a nitrate projection booth there, allowing for the showing of films on the original nitrate prints. Most recently we have partnered with the Cinematheque on our Foreign Film Series.