Application dates

The first call of the International Distribution strand:

  • opens 28 April 2021
  • closes 30 June 2021

Films in the Official Selection at the Cannes Film Festival 2021 should apply before 14 May 2021.

What you can apply for

  • funding relating to the international sale, marketing and promotion of a single eligible UK film in the form of non-repayable grants:
  • up to £60,000 for a single eligible ‘packaged film’ or up to £10,000 for a single eligible ‘pre-sale film’

Up to six applications can be made per eligible applicant during the fund’s pilot year.

More detail on eligible costs and activities can be found in the guidelines available for download below.

Who can apply

UK companies who have been appointed as the international sales agent for a feature-length live action or animation, fiction or documentary film.

The film must:

  • be budgeted at less than £10 million
  • be capable of qualifying for certification as a British film 
  • not be fully financed by a studio or mini major
  • not be intended for a TV or SVOD premiere

Applicants must provide written consent from the lead UK producer of the film to make an application. 

Please see the guidelines below for a full list of eligibility criteria.

British films that are represented by non-UK sales agents and that are seeking support for activity at a specific festival should contact the BFI’s Film Export Fund. UK sales agents should note that they cannot apply to both funds for the same film title.

Our funding priorities

This strand aims to grow exports and global demand for UK independent film. It will support the UK film industry to achieve measurable results that would not have been possible without UK Global Screen Fund (UKGSF) support, including:

  • increasing the number and value of international sales of UK independent film
  • increasing international audiences for UK independent film
  • increasing commercial returns for UK screen companies, rights holders and financiers

In addition, in making awards through each of its strands, the UKGSF is seeking to ensure a UK-wide benefit and address geographic imbalance within the industry.

Therefore, as part of our assessment we will consider:

  • where the applicant company and UK producer(s) are based
  • where projects are shot and made
  • how projects reflect the culture and talent of Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the English regions outside Greater London

What you need to provide

To complete the application form you will need to supply: 

  • full details of the eligible company and eligible film
  • details of the UK producer(s) of the eligible film and collection agent (if applicable)
  • an overview of the activity you are seeking funding for
  • details of festivals and/or market participation for the eligible film over the next six months
  • value of documented and/or forecast sales of the eligible film 
  • detailed sales and marketing budget and schedule (using the template provided below)

The full list of what must be supplied in the application form and as an attachment is set out in the funding guidelines.

Budget templates

The following templates should be used to provide details of your sales and marketing budget and activity schedule.

The relevant completed template should be uploaded under the attachments section of the application form.

Apply for funding

If this is your first application, please create an account.

We will only consider funding projects that have been submitted to us through the formal application process via the online application portal.

Read the BFI UK Global Screen Fund – International Distribution strand guidelines before making an application.

If you wish to see the online application form before applying, please download the relevant application preview.

If you have any questions relating to the funding or application, please email

We can provide assistance to applicants who have a disability, are D/deaf, have a visual or hearing impairment or are neurodiverse, where this support is needed for someone to make an application. See Access support for BFI applicants.

Our resources: application outcomes and feedback

The extremely competitive nature of our funding means that we have to make very difficult decisions and often have to turn down projects even when they meet some or all of our stated criteria.

We aim to make the application process as fair and transparent as possible. As a result of the volume of applications we receive, we do not have the resources to provide feedback on projects that have been declined.