The BFI receives £16.5 million a year from UK Film Council. It champions moving image culture, education and cinema heritage to benefit as wide an audience as possible. It also aims to deepen and encourage public debate about film.
First Light Movies
First Light Movies is a £1.1 million a year Lottery funded digital short filmmaking scheme that offers children and young people more opportunities to participate in and learn about filmmaking . It aims to increase the number of films made by young people, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The Skillset Film Skills Fund ensures a strong, consistent supply of skilled and talented professionals in line with market demand and aims to build a bigger and better future for the film industry in the UK. As the first ever comprehensive training strategy for the British film industry, it was launched in September 2003.
UK MEDIA Desk
The UK MEDIA Desk is the information office for the MEDIA Programme. It offers support and advice for UK applicants. The MEDIA Programme offers a wide variety of funding for film and television, covering training, development, distribution, events and festivals.
Script development Script quality can make or break a film. Our Development Fund provides £4 million a year to support the development of high quality, commercially viable screenplays. Funded screenplays include Brideshead Revisited and How to Lose Friends and Alienate People .
We support the production of British feature films through two funds.
The Premiere Fund provides £8 million a year to finance production of popular, mainstream films, for example St. Trinian's, Stormbreaker , Severance , Miss Potter and Becoming Jane.
The New Cinema Fund releases £5 million a year to innovative film-makers , helping to back movies like Red Road , The Wind that Shakes the Barley , This is England and London to Brighton .
Short films can help new film-makers break into the mainstream. Our New Cinema Fund supports several short film schemes. Finance provided through the scheme has allowed Andrea Arnold ( Wasp, Red Road ), Duane Hopkins ( Love Me or Leave Me, Better Things ) and other directors to move from shorts to full features.
Film distribution and export
We want to widen the choice of films shown at UK cinemas. Our Prints and Advertising Fund provides £4 million a year to support the distribution of films that might otherwise not be shown widely, among them, The Curse of the Golden Flower , Volver and Tell No-One.
Our export funding helps to sell and finance the screening of British films around the world.
The UK Film Council supports the distribution and exhibition of specialised film in the UK and has launched various schemes to do this, including:
In 2002 the Prints and Advertising Fund which offers £2million per year to offer support for distributors for extra prints and advertising for specialised films which otherwise would have limited releases across the UK.
In 2003 the Cinema Access Programme was launched, a half million pound fund dedicated to improving access to cinema for people with disabilities, specifically the deaf and the blind.
In 2004 the Digital Fund for Non Theatrical Exhibition was launched, a half million pound fund to help expand activities e.g. by film societies, in order to bring viewing opportunities to small, rural areas across the whole UK that may not be able to support a full-time cinema.
In 2005 the Digital Screen Network an £11.5 million scheme was set up to create a network of 250 screens dedicated to the exhibition of specialised films in locations across the UK where there is no such provision currently. The intention is that this will make it easier to show British films in the UK as the distribution will be through electronic means rather than the transfer of physical film reels.