Colin Higgins is an acclaimed screenwriter, director, and producer of films such as Harold and Maude and 9 to 5. He established the Colin Higgins Foundation in 1986 to further his humanitarian goals.


The Youth Courage Awards has evolved to support LGBTQ+ youth filmmakers!

In 2023, the Colin Higgins Foundation announced a partnership with Frameline, the San Francisco International LGBTQ+ Film Festival, the longest-running, largest, and most widely recognized LGBTQ+ film exhibition event in the world. 

Three young American filmmakers, Daisy Friedman, Karina Dandashi and Emilio Subia (picture below left to right), have been selected as the recipients of the Colin Higgins Youth Filmmaker Grant, and will each receive $15,000 to support their future film projects, for a total of $45,000 awarded to these filmmakers. In addition, the winners’ short films will be showcased at the Frameline: San Francisco International LGBTQ+ Film Festival, taking place June 14-24, 2023.

In 2022, Colin Higgins Foundation officially partnered with Outfest and launched the “Colin Higgins Youth Filmmaker Grant,” a new initiative centered on providing LGBTQIA+ youth filmmakers with financial support to continue their work.

Learn more here.






Since the inception, the Colin Higgins Foundation has handed out $5.8 million in grants to a wide variety of institutions, groups and individuals.


Colin Higgins Youth Courage Awards were established in 2000 to further the spirit and lifework of Colin Higgins. All of his films celebrate honesty and integrity in the face of adversity: Harold and Maude find love despite the objections of family and society, the heroes of Nine to Five find fulfillment and save the company by learning to appreciate their individual talents and differences, and the shunned madam of The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas transforms the lives of many through her kindness. Like the characters in his films, Colin Higgins Youth Courage Award recipients have endured overwhelming hardships, yet have handled themselves with the utmost grace and dignity.

Read more