The grant will be awarded to a woman or non-binary filmmaker aged 39 or older 

By Ally Mauch
July 15, 2020 04:30 PM
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Lynn Shelton
Kristian Dowling/WireImage

A new filmmaker grant has been created in honor of filmmaker Lynn Shelton, about two months after her death at age 54.

Seattle’s Northwest Film Forum and Duplass Brothers Productions announced the award — the Lynn Shelton “Of a Certain Age” Grant — on Wednesday.

“The $25,000 unrestricted cash grant will be awarded each year to a US-based woman or non-binary filmmaker, age 39 or older, who has yet to direct a narrative feature,” the announcement said.

Shelton, best known for her work on indie films, including Your Sister's Sister, and the television series GLOW and Little Fires Everywhere, died of a previously unidentified blood disorder in May.

"I have some awful news. Lynn passed away last night,” comedian Marc Maron, who was Shelton's romantic and creative partner for the past year, shared in a statement with IndieWire at the time. "She collapsed yesterday morning after having been ill for a week...It was not COVID-19. The doctors could not save her. They tried. Hard."

The late filmmaker directed her first feature film at age 39 and “wore her ‘late bloomer’ status as a badge of honor,” Shelton’s longtime friend and collaborator, Megan Griffiths said in a statement.

“This grant seeks to reinforce that great filmmakers can emerge at any age, and to elevate the voices of a segment of the filmmaking community who have precious few resources dedicated to supporting them yet plenty of stories to tell,” Griffiths, who is working to help establish the grant, said.

Lynn Shelton
Fred Hayes/Getty Images

She continued, “Lynn was 39 when I met her on her first feature, and I watched her grow as an artist and become more certain in her path with every passing year. She wore her ‘late bloomer’ status as a badge of honor and we know she would be thrilled that this grant exists in her name.”

“There was an appreciation and an immediacy to the way Lynn approached her film and TV career, which she openly credited to her ‘late start,’” Mel Eslyn, president of Duplass Brothers Productions, added. “Now finding myself approaching the same age Lynn got started, I find it comical to think we call 39 a ‘late start.’ But the reality is there is just not enough representation of women over a ‘certain age’ in media, in front of, but even more so, behind the camera. We hope that this grant can be a meaningful step towards helping to change that.”