UKFC launches ambitious new plans and £15 fund
by Natasha Senjanovic
02/04/2010 - Yesterday, the UK Film Council published its three-year plan and launched a new £15m (approximately €17m) Film Fund. It is the most significant revision of UKFC activities in ten years.
The comprehensive plan specifically:
- launches a £15m-a-year Film Fund (topped up further by film recoupment) for emerging, experimental and world class filmmakers;
- ring-fences money for development;
- confirms production companies will for the first time automatically receive a significant share of the UKFC’s recoupment from all feature film investments in which they are involved, following State Aid approval of the measure by the European Commission;
- sets up a think tank chaired by UKFC Chairman Tim Bevan to identify new policy initiatives to grow independent UK film companies of scale;
- proposes a national web-based talent showcase to unearth fresh talent, to be launched in autumn 2010;
- confirms £5m is allocated to the new Innovation Fund, which will launch in autumn 2010;
- provides £500,000 for film exports for each year of the plan;
- confirms that 100% of recoupment from the Prints & Advertising Fund will, like the Film Fund, top up that fund’s budget.
Alongside this plan, there have been continued merger discussions, which began in August 2009, between the UKFC and the British Film Institute (BFI).
For the new Film Fund, UKFC CEO John Woodward said that Head of the UKFC Film Fund Tanya Seghatchian will be flanked “in the search for creative excellence [by a] team of three Senior Production and Development Executives with an impressive and broad range of film industry expertise…and big production successes under their belts: Natascha Wharton (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz [trailer]), Lizzie Francke (And When Did You Last See Your Father? [trailer], Vinyan [trailer]) and Chris Collins (My Summer of Love [trailer, film focus], Brick Lane [trailer]).