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Two winners, selected by an all-women jury, will be announced December 3, 2021.

New York, New York, November 4, 2021 — Museum of the Moving Image is excited to announce the ten finalists in contention for the 2021 Sloan Student Prizes. This is the Museum’s inaugural year presenting the awards; they were formerly administered by the Tribeca Film Institute. Created to celebrate outstanding scripts that integrate science or technology into realistic, compelling, and timely stories, the Sloan Student Prizes—Grand Jury and Discovery—also aim to support film development and advance the careers of diverse, emerging filmmakers as they transition out of graduate school and into the film industry.

Each finalist—nominated by one of twelve top film programs across the nation—stands to win a $20,000 prize, industry exposure, and year-round mentorship from both a science advisor and film industry professional.

“Given the importance in both Hollywood and STEM fields, we’re excited by this pool of finalists who are diverse not only in the filmmakers themselves but in the scientific topics addressed,” said MoMI’s Sonia Epstein, Executive Editor and Associate Curator of Science and Film who is leading this new program with support from Project Coordinator Sarah Luciano. “From the neurology of sleep to the chemistry of art authentication, these ambitious projects tackle a range of contemporary and historical topics in feature film and episodic formats.”

Two winners will be selected by a jury of esteemed film and science professionals, which for the first time will be all women. The 2021 jury includes: actress Cara Seymour (Radium GirlsThe Knick), producer Natalie Qasabian (SearchingRun), Cinetic’s Head of Tracking Alexis Galfas, Princeton University Historian of Technology Dr. Emily Thompson, Cornell Tech Interaction Design Specialist Dr. Wendy Ju, and marine biochemist Dr. Bethanie Edwards of University of California, Berkeley. Their selections will be announced on December 3, 2021, followed by a public awards ceremony in January 2022.

Here is the full list of finalists:

Nominated by six graduate film programs that have year-round partnerships with the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to award screenplay and production grants.

Shattered Faces by Ariane Hahusseau (Pilot)
American Film Institute (AFI)

Going Dutch by Kate Condé Hamilton (Feature)
Carnegie Mellon University School of Drama

Damascus by Cole Smith (Feature)
Columbia University

A Long Time Ago... by Steven Kraeger (Feature)
NYU Tisch School of the Arts

The Sleepwatchers by Yashna Malhotra (Pilot)
UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television

Starlight by Marisa Torelli Pedevska (Pilot)
USC School of Cinematic Arts

Nominated by university film programs that have no preexisting relationship with the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

In the Stars by Amanda Senrra (Feature)
Florida State University

The Gentle Art by Olivia Salzman (Feature)
SUNY Purchase School of Film and Media Studies

Delta by Juli Jackson (Pilot)
Temple University

A Second Chance by Shalini Roy (Feature)
University of Michigan

To learn more about the Sloan Student Prizes, please visit

This program is made possible with the support of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.


About the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation: The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation is a New York based, philanthropic, not-for-profit institution that makes grants in three areas: research in science, technology, and economics; quality and diversity of scientific institutions; and public engagement with science. Sloan’s program in Public Understanding of Science and Technology, directed by Doron Weber, aims to enrich people’s lives through a keener appreciation of our increasingly scientific and technological world and to humanize the lives of the men and women working as scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. The goal is to integrate the two cultures of science and the humanities by supporting an array of original works such as books, radio, television, film, theater, and new media. The Foundation works with about 20 film school and film festival partners and has supported over 750 film projects, including over 30 feature films. For more information visit or follow @SloanPublic on Twitter or Facebook.