BFI Film Festival Fund FAQ
Can I discuss my ideas with someone before I make an application?
In the first instance, please read the Film Festival Fund overview, guidelines and these FAQ.
We also recommend that you read the UK Audience Network for Film: An Overview document (PDF). If, after that, you still have any questions please use the contact form and we will contact you by email or phone at a time and date to suit you.
Where appropriate we will arrange a meeting to discuss your questions with you in person. We are likely to add your questions to these FAQ.
What information do I need to include in the application?
Please refer to the guidelines for advice on completing the application form.
How do I check the status of my current application?
When we have received your submission, we will send you a confirmation email. Please see the guidelines for an indicative timetable for us to process your application and get back to you.
How can I log in to my account?
You can log in to your account by using the account login link on the Film Festival Fund page. Logging into your account allows you to access your in-progress or submitted application. If you do not have an account you will be asked to register for one prior to starting your application.
What kinds of festivals will be funded through the Film Festival Fund?
This Fund is aimed at supporting a broad range of film festival activity in the UK; from community provision through to sustaining the ambition and reach of those festivals which are of national or international significance. We wish to support greater sustainability of the sector, encourage new initiatives and ideas around film festivals, and to incentivise film festivals to both work together, and to engage with the film sector more widely through the UK Audience Network.
We wish to encourage people to build a life-long relationship with film, to help create audiences for a broader range of films across all platforms, and to ensure that film culture can be accessed and enjoyed by everyone across the UK. We believes film festivals have the potential to make a significant contribution to these aims.
What can awards from the Film Festival Fund be used for?
Primarily funding can be used for programming, staff, events and activities, but not for capital purchases. Please refer to section two of the guidelines for more details on what our funding can and can’t be used for.
Which strand should I apply to?
Use the descriptions below to determine which strand best applies to your festival.
- Strand 1 is funding for audience development activity within film festivals that offer a strong cultural programme and which serve regional/local audiences or which may have a particular specialist theme enabling them to reach audiences from further across the UK. Such festivals are usually focused on audiences rather than industry and do not generally attract industry delegation. New festivals can be supported under this strand as long as they demonstrate a clear cultural vision which meets a gap in provision are based on audience analysis and need and demonstrate financial viability.
- Strand 2 is to support audience development activity at UK film festivals that have an international or UK-wide reach and profile, enhancing opportunities for the UK film industry nationally and internationally, as well as further increasing audience choice. New festivals will not be supported under this strand.
If I apply to the wrong strand will my application be reconsidered under the alternate strand?
No. Please consider carefully which strand your festival belongs to prior to making your application to the Film Festival Fund. For example, if you apply for Strand 2 and are not successful because, in the opinion of the BFI, your festival is not, and does not have the potential to be, a festival of UK-wide or international significance, then your application will be rejected and it will not be reconsidered under Strand 1.
Why do festivals in Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales have to supply a letter of support and additional information with their applications?
The Creative England Film Culture team and resources transferred to the BFI on 1 April 2013. The BFI are now therefore responsible for funding film festivals in England, whereas there are dedicated film festival funds operated by our partners in the nations: Northern Ireland Screen, Creative Scotland and Film Agency for Wales. The BFI Film Festival Fund will therefore prioritise festivals which are based in England but in certain circumstances, where it is clear that an allocation of funding from the BFI can achieve added value, we will also provide additional support for festivals based elsewhere in the UK. Such festivals will need to demonstrate support from their agency and provide additional information, as outlined in detail in the guidelines.
Some of the points in the assessment criteria are not relevant to my festival. Will my application automatically fail if I cannot address every point?
No, not all questions in the Assessment Criteria section will be relevant to every festival – as a basic rule the more funding you request the more questions you need to address.
Why is there more than one deadline?
The Film Festival Fund is a rolling four year fund with two application calls per year. Please refer to the table in section 2.2 of the Guidelines for details of the deadlines and key dates.
Can I submit an application for funding for a new festival?
We may consider supporting a new festival (in Strand 1 only) if it can demonstrate that it will fill an important gap in provision, either in terms of geographical location, theme or focus.
Why is funding only available until 2017?
This scheme is part of our Film Forever strategy which runs until the end of the financial year in 2017. The investment period for this Film Festival Fund therefore is the four year period up until end March 2017.
My question has not been answered here. How do I contact you?
Please submit your query using our contact form.