Thursday, June 18th, 2020
Norwich Film Festival (NFF), the fastest growing short film festival in the UK, are proud recipients of the BFI FAN Covid-19 Resilience fund with thanks to the BFI Film Audience Network awarding funds from National Lottery.
The fund, which has supported 130 FAN Members across the UK, has been made available to provide grants to those in critical financial need as they continue to face months of closure and uncertainty. £1.3m National Lottery funding, plus a £150,000 contribution from the Mayor of London’s Culture at Risk Business Support Fund, has been made available to provide grants to those in critical financial need as they continue to face months of closure and uncertainty. BFI FAN – a unique collaboration of eight Film Hubs managed by leading film organisations across the UK – targeted the fund to help small and medium sized audience-facing organisations with a particular focus on venue-based exhibitors.
Ben Luxford, Head of UK Audiences, BFI, said: “Redirecting National Lottery and Mayor of London funding to make emergency grants to our independent exhibitors has proved to be a lifeline, enabling our fantastic venues, cinemas and festivals across the UK to remain in business in the immediate term. However, it is clear that these vital and unique organisations, which are crucial to the rich cultural fabric of their local communities, are still in crisis. When allowed to reopen, safely implementing social distancing guidance will not only be logistically impossible for some, but many are also unlikely to cover their costs when operating at reduced capacity. Losing these exhibitors would be a huge cultural loss for UK audiences, so I am pleased FAN has been able to help them keep the lights on while we all face the oncoming challenges.”
The funding will allow us to ensure that we remain in a position to hold further editions of the festival in 2020 and beyond, whether through the introduction of social distancing measures or in an adapted format. With social distancing potentially restricting the number of tickets available for events, this additional funding will prove invaluable in ensuring that the festival remains financially viable and is able to continue engaging with local, national and international audiences.
Kellen Playford, Founder & Lead Consultant of Norwich Film Festival said: “Despite the current situation, we remain optimistic about delivering a festival which will meet audience’s expectations after a stellar year for us in 2019. Short film submissions have been open since January, with our recent BAFTA qualification contributing to what is set to be the biggest increase in submissions since the festival’s inception in 2009. We’ve also brought together an impressive panel of thirteen Industry Judges to select the award-winning films, including ‘Rocketman’ director Dexter Fletcher and ‘Shaun the Sheep: Farmageddon’ co-director Will Becher.”
The 2020 edition of the festival is expected to run in November, with further details to be announced in the coming months.
Click here to find out more about the BFI FAN COVID-19 Resilience Fund.
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