The Indian Film Festival Of Los Angeles (IFFLA) has launched the IFFLA Film Fund for film-makers with narrative and documentary features reflecting universal themes inherent in Indian culture.

The Fund will aim to help artists of Indian and non-Indian heritage and follows hot on the heels of Monday’s announcement that the Sundance Institute and Cinereach are launching a $1.5m support scheme for socially conscious film-makers.

The Fund will provide support at all stages including marketing and distribution. The first phase is the development grant of up to $10,000 available to Indian screenwriters and non-Indians whose projects contain Indian-related content.

IFFLA festival director Christina Marouda said the initiative had been “in our plans for years”, adding that it elevated the festival to “an institutional level.”

Comprehensive eligibility requirements and further guidelines will be issued in late August, however IFFLA revealed that writers applying for the development grant must not have more than one produced film to their name and the project should have a director and/or producer attached.

The development grant is for narrative features only and the recipient will be announced in January 2010. Subject to the recipient’s location, he or she will get the chance to hold a staged reading at IFFLA 2010.

All finalists will get feedback from the IFFLA committee and receive a Final Draft software gift certificate. Furthermore, the IFFLA grant committee can at its discretion submit select projects to producers, distributors and sales agents.