The Film Industry, along with most other industries, has been severely affected by the current pandemic.
The last few weeks have seen the launch of several funding programmes and support packages to help the creative industries survive the Covid-19 crisis. There is huge pressure on the industry at the moment during these testing times, and below we have listed a few of these opportunities that will help those who are financially struggling during this difficult period.
The Film and TV Charity
Set up almost a century ago in 1924 the charity offer a wide range of financial, practical and emotional support to people across varying aspects of the industry to help them flourish when otherwise they might find obstacles in their way. Starting with a £1million donation from industry leaders Netflix, they have set up 2 schemes to help those financially struggling during the Covid-19 crisis.
The Film and TV COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund has been created in partnership with the BFI. It is able to provide one-off grants from £500 to £2,500 to active workers in film, TV and cinema that aren’t eligible for the governments Self-Employment Income Support Scheme or SEISS (or are eligible but expect less than £800 per month in support) and facing significant financial hardship as a result of the Covid-19 crisis.
The COVID-19 Repayable Grants Scheme has been created for self-employed film, TV and cinema workers who are eligible for the Government’s SEISS’. The grants are designed to provide cashflow support until payments through the SEISS are made in June and recipients are asked to repay the grants once they have received their back-dated Government support.
Both applications will close at 6pm Wednesday 22nd April 2020.
For more information please follow the link here.
Our friends over at ScreenSkills have launched a free package of remote and interactive training, online talks and masterclasses with industry leaders to support freelancers in upskilling and staying in touch with industry. Between 14 and 19 April they are offering a range of free training sessions and masterclasses with broadcasters, indies and the new content providers share insight and show solidarity with the screen industries workforce in this unprecedented period of lockdown. For more information and to sign up to these fantastic classes please follow the link here.
The High-end TV Skills team based at ScreenSkills have also setup a range of short online courses that will provide experienced individuals with short courses to help them wit their core knowledge base and improve upon their existing skills. The 2 courses that are currently live focus on; the development of business skills helping freelancers with their finances and with strategically planning their next move and a “Step up to Line Producing” course, for those already in production management looking to take the next step up. Both courses are now live to apply for so follow the link here to apply.
BBC and ITV
As well as supporting the Film and TV Charity with a £700,000 donation, the BBC has announced a five point plan to back the broadcasting industry at this difficult time. The measures announced will provide investment in purposeful activity and enable production companies to continue a pipeline of quality ideas and programmes, in both the short and long term. Funding opportunities have been increased, specifically the “Small Indie Fund” which is seeing its investment double from £1m to £2m.
ITV have also announced the creation of a £500k development fund targeted at the independent sector to help producers during the crisis. ITV’s Director of Television, Kevin Lygo when announcing the fund commented.
“ITV’s success is based on the ideas that are brought to us by indies from across the UK and we don’t want that to stop. We have this money specifically available to ramp up development over the next few months so we can hit the ground running when current restrictions are lifted.
“The commissioning teams are willing to increase the number of virtual meetings they have in order to build up an exciting slate over the next few months – so if you have an idea for us, especially in the unscripted space, we are in a position to help fund that immediately.
“We want to reassure the indie community – small or big, regional or London – that ITV is very much open for business and we have the resource to invest in ideas for the channel.”