American Society of Magazine Editors

Documentary Film Residency at Mother Jones

Documentary filmmakers and investigative reporters have a lot in common: a commitment to changing the world through storytelling, a dedication to shine light into places rarely seen, and the patience to follow a story wherever it leads. And, right now, the most interesting practitioners of both crafts are experimenting and reinventing—combining short form and long, using iterative formats, and connecting with new audiences on new platforms.

If you're a filmmaker interested in partnering with an innovative newsroom focused on accurate, point-of-view narrative storytelling, the new Mother Jones documentary film residency may be perfect for you. This unique new program, supported by the Ford Foundation and Just Films, will give an emerging or early-career filmmaker a yearlong opportunity to embed in the newsroom, with a full-time salary and benefits, and the wraparound support of story editors, fact-checkers, social-media mavens, and crack lawyers.

We want this fellowship to be an incubator for diverse new talent, and to expand the pool of artists able to take on the considerable risks of long-term projects.

A filmmaker willing to mess with form and format? Hit us up. Hungry to react to the news cycle by creating a variety of shorter work while working toward your passion project? Someone who craves a deeper understanding of a beat we also care about, while perfecting your pitch? We're into that, too.

Our strong preference is to base this position in our New York bureau, but we're open to considering the alternatives that accompany the right candidate.

Major Responsibilities:

  • To contribute film projects to Mother Jones' lineup of quality reporting
  • To pitch, produce, shoot, edit, and post-produce film projects with the intention of building a compelling new body of work


  • We're looking for an artist with a demonstrable visual flair and a distinctive voice, along with a willingness to experiment with how to make films.
  • Your body of work should reveal you as an emerging or early-career filmmaker who engages with big social questions of the day.
  • Required for this position is an advanced ability to shoot in the field and edit video. (Our preferred editing suite is Adobe Creative Cloud.) Your workflow should ensure a high-quality product. You should have advanced knowledge of video formats, camera technique, lighting, audio recording, and post-production.
  • Preferred is an active enthusiasm for new ways of getting work to different audiences and evidence of experimentation online.


If this sounds like you, please email the following along with your résumé to jobs [at] motherjones [dot] com by close of business on March 7th:

  • A one-page description of the kind of work you're interested in pursuing. We're open to hearing about anything: full-length documentaries, a multipart web series, or some kind of messed-up Snapchat-fueled fusion of both. But you don't have to walk in the door with a project in mind: If you're involved in a particular set of concerns or a community you'd like to explore, or if you've seen our reporters do work that would benefit from the eye of a filmmaker, tell us about that. We're especially interested in topics that tackle our core beats: justice and race, climate change, and political transformation.
  • A three- to five-minute reel of your work to date.
  • Links to fuller-length film work that we simply can't miss.

Mother Jones and its parent organization, the Foundation for National Progress, are committed to building and maintaining a diverse and welcoming workplace. We do not discriminate in our hiring based on race, color, religion, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, marital status, veteran status, union activity, physical or mental disability, AIDS/HIV status, on-the-job injuries, age, or any status otherwise protected under applicable federal, state, or local laws.

What we can offer you is a competitive salary, great benefits, ownership of your role, the opportunity for mentorship and growth, and a great team. Mother Jones has an excellent benefits package that includes paid health, dental, and vision insurance, three weeks of vacation during your first year (increasing to four weeks during your second), 12 sick days per year, and 12 holidays (including your birthday). The terms of this job are covered under the terms of a collective bargaining agreement with Local 2103, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America, AFL-CIO.

Link to job listing

Friday, February 24, 2017
New York, NY