BFI NETWORK exists to support, develop and fund emerging filmmakers looking to kick-start their career.

Made possible through National Lottery funding, we collaborate with film organisations and leading cultural venues across the UK to provide short film and early feature development funding, industry-backed professional development and networking support to producers, writers and directors aged 18 and above.


We offer Short Film Funding, and Early Feature Development Funding for fiction live action, animation or immersive projects. Funding for short film fiction projects is available directly from BFI NETWORK for filmmaking teams where the director is based in one of the English regions. 

For teams based in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales similar funding is available directly from our partner organisations working in these nations: Northern Ireland Screen, Short Circuit and Ffilm Cymru Wales.

BFI NETWORK funding for documentary is available to teams UK wide, through BFI Doc Society Fund.

Read more about the funding we offer across the UK.

UK-Wide partners and local talent executives

We have a network of UK-wide partners in each English region and in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. In England these partners are also part of the BFI Film Audience Network (BFI FAN), a collaboration of leading film organisations and venues around the UK.

Our UK partners employ BFI NETWORK teams, ensuring the BFI NETWORK offer is accessible to filmmakers in their local area. Each partner is home to at least one BFI NETWORK Talent Executive or equivalent role, who:

  • help to demystify the funding landscape and promote the available BFI NETWORK funds as widely as possible in their region
  • select eligible projects for BFI NETWORK funding. In England they make recommendations to the central BFI National Lottery finance committee. In Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales our partners distribute funding directly to filmmakers
  • provide creative oversight of funded projects in their area, and work closely with funded teams to offer guidance on their selected projects
  • deliver local activity for writers, directors and producers. This ranges from networking events to focused labs and development opportunities, and varies in each area in response to local needs
  • partner with local filmmaking organisations such as festivals and filmmaking groups or collectives

Discover what’s happening in your area by finding your local BFI NETWORK team.

If you are unsure which English region you are part of, please refer to the BFI Film Audience Network Map.

Professional development

We provide a variety of professional development opportunities for writers, directors and producers across the UK. Some of these are delivered centrally by the BFI, while others are collaborations with other key UK film organisations. Our flagship national professional development programmes include:

  • NETWORK @ LFF immerses emerging writers, directors and producers in a programme of screenings, workshops and networking at the heart of the BFI London Film Festival
  • INSIGHT: Emerging Producer Programme equips emerging producers with the confidence and ability to realise their creative ambition and build sustainable careers
  • NETWORK Weekender supports early career writers, directors and producers who may have faced barriers to access in the film industry, such as those who identify as working class or non-binary, trans and female

Our partner collaborations include:

  • BFI Flare x BAFTA Mentoring offers LGBTQIA+ filmmakers mentoring, wellbeing guidance and career coaching, as well as access to BFI Flare Film Festival
  • British Council Travel and Talent Lab Grants support filmmakers to travel to international festivals and attend international talent labs

Be the first to hear about upcoming BFI NETWORK opportunities by following us on social media and signing up to our newsletter.

Please note these are our national social channels and newsletter. If you are looking for events and opportunities local to you please connect with your local BFI NETWORK team.