SXSW: BFI Extends Fund Encouraging U.S. Distributors To Acquire UK Films

By | Tuesday March 4, 2014 @ 5:27am PST

bfiThe British Film Institute created a pilot scheme in January to give a leg up to UK films premiering at Sundance with a view to helping them attract theatrical distribution in the U.S. The program has now … Read More »

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Global Showbiz Briefs: BFI Film Fund For Docs, Film London For Artists, RealD In Hospitals, Endemol’s ‘Big Boss’

By | Thursday February 28, 2013 @ 10:19pm PST

Documentary Makers To Pitch BFI For Funding
The BFI Film Fund will dish out funding to documentaries via twice-yearly public pitch sessions, in London and at Sheffield Doc/Fest. Documentarians will pitch ideas to a panel of senior execs “from within the BFI Film Fund and wider documentary funding community”, with selected candidates benefitting from a day of expert-led development to help them focus pitches and strengthen ideas. Documentary filmmaking in Britain is on a high after a string of high-profile successes like Man On Wire and Senna, as well as this year’s Oscar- and BAFTA-winning Brit-produced Searching For Sugarman and the BAFTA-winning The Imposter. “Documentary is the punk of the film industry,” said the BFI’s Lizzie Francke. “We’re absolutely committed to supporting the UK’s visionary documentary filmmakers and we’re pleased to be working with Sheffield Doc/Fest on this new way to deliver support directly to the sector.” – Joe Utichi  Read More »

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BFI Sets £2.5M In Development Funds For UK Production Companies

By | Thursday January 10, 2013 @ 3:20am PST

The British Film Institute has earmarked up to £2.5M ($4M) of Lottery funding for its Vision Awards initiative through 2015. The grants will provide up to £200K over two years to a maximum of 15 production companies for … Read More »

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BFI Film Fund Chief Ben Roberts Waves Flag For New Spending Plans

By | Wednesday October 17, 2012 @ 9:08am PDT

Joe Utichi contributes to Deadline’s UK coverage

In a keynote at the Film Production Finance Market in London this morning, BFI Film Fund director Ben Roberts talked about plans for better cooperation with international partners, providing extra coin for minority co-productions and establishing development/production funds for UK producers. Roberts also insisted there will be “no favoritism” at the BFI, which took over responsibility for running the UK movie business last year. He was referencing criticism that was often lobbed at the now-defunct UK Film Council by producers whose applications for funding were unsuccessful. “I’ll be here until I’m despised,” he joked.

Earlier this month, the BFI launched a five-year “Film Forever” plan, which laid out a funding increase of £24M annually by 2017. Today, the message in Roberts’ keynote couldn’t have been clearer: This is not the UK Film Council. While he didn’t openly criticize the work of the organization that handed out public cash under the last government, he said the BFI’s new plan favored “originality, excellence and quality of vision.” In a nod to international partners, Roberts promised the org was hard at work on a new strategy. “We’re slightly hamstrung by the confines of the UK Tax credit. It’s very territorial. Qualifying is tough for co-productions. We’ve realized we have to come up with other ways to be useful to the international community,” he said. Calling the BFI a “global business,” Roberts added the body will allocate around £1M of its budget to minority co-productions. Read More »

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BFI’s Isabel Davis Given Expanded Role As Head Of International

By | Tuesday September 11, 2012 @ 2:05am PDT

Davis joined the British Film Institute in April last year as senior executive of international for the Film Fund. In an expanded role, she’ll become head of international, leading the org’s ambitions for UK film abroad. New duties … Read More »

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