Monthly Archives

June 2019

Film and TV Charity

Complete the Film and TV Charity Well-being Survey

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The Film and TV Charity has launched the very first industry-wide study to understand the state of the well-being of the UK’s film, TV and cinema workforce, and how they can be better supported. They are inviting those working behind-the-screen to voice their personal experiences via an online survey. This will shine a light on the industry and ultimately provide a true reflection of the status quo. The anonymous survey will close at midnight on Sunday, 7th July, after which the outcome, along with in-depth quantitative and qualitative research set to be conducted over the summer will be revealed to industry this coming autumn.

With a workforce of over 260,000 (according to latest figures from the DCMS), as you will know, it’s a lucrative industry. But behind the glitz and glam on camera, the largely freelance lifestyle – often synonymous with a lack of job security and difficulty accessing statutory benefits such as sick pay and pensions – is known to take its toll on people’s mental health and overall well-being. It’s time for industry to take action.

In conjunction with the study, the Film & Television Charity has assembled an industry taskforce – which includes the likes of the BFI’s Chief Executive Amanda Nevill and VUE International’s Chief Executive Tim Richards, to help catalyse a new industry-led programme of practical and scaleble interventions. To mark the launch of the study, the charity has created a thought-provoking 90 second film ‘Smashed?’ directed by award-winning director Tim Pope. Watch that video here.

The goal is to ultimately help to transform the lives of all those working behind-the-scenes of the shows and films we love to watch. If you have any questions, or would like to see any of the materials, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Those working in the film, TV and cinema industry are being encouraged to have their say by completing the online survey here.

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Art of Empathy

Multi-Media Arts Event at Paradise Circus car park – June 25th

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An exciting arts event which includes painting, spoken word, and video projection comes to the Paradise Circus multi-storey car park in Birmingham. The event is titled ‘Re-imagining the Opposition: The Art of Empathy’. It will take place at  the Paradise Circus multi-storey car park on Tuesday, June 25th, from 6pm. The organizer, Soul City Arts, hopes the event stirs up discussion and engages people to see art and performance in a new and refreshing light.

It will include a performance by Mark Gonzales and include original artworks by Mohammed Ali and Mohsen Keiany. Writing on social media about this new project, Mohammed Ali, one of the artists at Soul City Arts,  who recently painted a Theresa May stencil on the day she resigned, stated: “I’ve been wanting to deliver something in a car park for a while. They are neutral spaces where everyone parks wherever they can find a place, no hierarchy. It’s only once you ascend via an elevator where we go into our separate worlds.”

The performance will include storytelling by Mark Gonzalez (USA/Tunisia), artwork by Mohammed Ali and Mohsen Keiany. The Soul City Arts group will transform a floor of the car park into an engagement space for arts and communities.

The event will present a cycle of Keiany’s paintings, which work through the artist’s traumatic experience of war and the dehumanization and opposition they bring. Gonzales will navigate through the artworks, feeding off original film work and projections by Ali and engaging the audience with ideas and dialogue around the theme of empathy and how it can transform thinking and relationships. In keeping with its theme, the event will place the voices of the community at its heart. The hopes, dreams, and memories of the community feature both within the art itself and will help structure the event. Active audience participation and discussion will be encouraged as the event progresses in an organic manner.

The project is inspired by the  academic work of Dr. James Hodkinson (Warwick University) – how art can promote empathy and transform relationships between faiths and cultures.

This project has been  funded by Arts Council England, Warwick University, Lottery Fund, Hybrid and Film Birmingham.

‘Re-imagining the Opposition: The Art of Empathy’ will take place at Paradise Circus multi-storey car park, Brindley Drive, Birmingham, B1 2NB on Tuesday 25 June, commencing at 6pm. This is a free, ticketless event and all are welcome.




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RTS Midlands awards

Submit to RTS Midlands Awards – Deadline July 12th

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You are invited to submit programmes or other content which were, or will be broadcast and/or published between 1st July 2018 and 30th June 2019 for consideration for the Midlands Centre Awards for 2019. The Awards will be presented at a prestigious red carpet event on the evening of the 29th November 2019 at the ICC in Birmingham.

Film Birmingham has sponsored the award for Single Television Drama or Drama Series. See all other award categories here.

Entry Information for All Categories. Please read all information carefully.

  • Programmes or content must have been produced, published, commissioned or creatively controlled by a Midlands based company or must be at least principally shot in the Midlands (55%) and/or principally produced in the Midlands.
  • Midlands Region for the purposes of these Awards includes: Derbyshire, Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, West Midlands and Worcestershire.
  • RTS Midlands strongly encourages diversity, in all its forms, across all categories.
  • The entry must have been first broadcast, released or published on a media platform between 1/7/18 and 30/6/19
  • You may enter your work whether or not you are a member of the RTS.
  • All entries must be submitted online by following this link:
  • You will need to register as a user in order to submit your entries.
  • Once you have registered you will need to Create Entry. In this section you can upload any relevant documentation that you would like the judges to consider.
  • To upload your video go to the Video Management tab
  • Please ensure when submitting your entry online that you complete all of the relevant boxes for each entry.
  • Please attached any supporting documentation that you would like the judges to consider to the submission when prompted
  • When submitting your entry make sure you choose to create your entry for RTS MIDLANDS AWARDS as other centres awards will also be listed here.
  • Please ensure all spellings as correct at the time of entry as we will copy and paste our information from the information submitted onto the system by you.
  • A 20 second clip of each entry must be submitted along with your entries (not instead of your entry). If your entry is nominated, this clip will be used as part of the presentation at the awards dinner, so please ensure it showcases your entry effectively.
    • If you are entering the same piece of work into more than one category, please ensure you submit a different 20 second clip for each entry.
    • Please ensure you submit your 20 second clip via the Video Management option and clearly mark it as “20 second clip for <<entry title and category entered>>”.
    • Please submit this as well as your entries and not instead of the full item.
    • 20 second clip requirements:
      • 20 second clip with fade from black and fade out to black
      • No clocks
      • File type MP4 only
      • Specify exactly which entry it is for including name of entrant and category
      • The onscreen caption for your entry clip (title, production company, where it was broadcast, any other relevant information)
  • Please ensure you include the twitter handles you would like used for any social media activity

Entry fees

  • There is an entry fee of £50 plus VAT per category.
    • If a programme is entered in one or more categories, a payment is required for each category entered.

Entry deadlines

  • The closing date for entries is Friday 12th July 2019.  Entries received after this date will not be considered.
  • The online submission system will be open for you to submit entries from 9am on Tuesday 7th May 2019.


  • Each category will be judged by a panel of independent Judges.
  • Judging will take place during August and early September 2019.
  • The Judges reserve the right to move submissions to more appropriate categories if necessary.
  • Details of judges will be given in the Awards Ceremony Programme.
  • If you would like details of the judging process please email

Nominees and Winners

  • Nominees will be announced on Tuesday 24th September 2019.
  • You will be advised by email if you have been nominated.
  • A full list of nominees will be posted on our website.
  • Winners will be announced at the Awards Ceremony which will be held on 29th November. Full details of this event and how to buy tickets will be released on Tuesday 24th September.

Student Awards

  • The invite to enter the Student Awards plus all category and criteria information will be issued by RTS Head Office in Summer 2019.
  • Student Awards will be presented at a separate ceremony.
  • Student Awards are open to anyone over the age of 16 in full-time education.
  • Do not submit entries to the Student Awards via the link above.

Further Information

  • For all enquiries relating to the Awards criteria or the judging process please contact Jayne Greene either by phoning 07792 776585 or emailing
  • For any technical support relating to the submission process please contact Jamie O’Neill at RTS Head Office 020 7822 2810 or by emailing JO’


rts career fair

RTS Midlands TV Careers Fair – October 7th

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The Royal Television Society Careers Fair is back this autumn and it will be huge! On Monday 7 October 2019 at Edgbaston Stadium, you can get all the latest tips, tricks and practical advice to help you land that all important first job in TV. This event is UNMISSABLE if you have ever thought about working in telly.

From 10:00am – 16:00pm, there will be panel sessions with production teams,  influential creatives and talent from the biggest shows and brands. You can also expect bootcamps, CV advice, networking opportunities,  and insight into the different jobs and training schemes that are available.



Look out for our special Film Birmingham stand to find out how you can engage with Birmingham’s film and television office as a student, production company or location scout.

Other companies exhibiting include: BBC Academy, BBC Blue Room, BBC Doctors, BBC Midlands Today, BBC School Report, BBC WM, BECTU Sector of Prospect, Channel 4, Edinburgh TV Festival, Full Fat TV,  ITV, National Film and Television School, Presenter Promotions, Producers Forum, The Writer’s Guild and many more!

Sessions available on the day:

10.30am-11.15am: The Secrets Behind TV Sport

The world class BBC Sport department kicks off the panel sessions. Find out the secrets behind working in Sport from the people behind one of the biggest live events in the annual calendar – Sports Personality of the Year (SPOTY) to sports documentaries and journalism. Panellists talking to host Richard Wilford (BBC WM Sport) are Michael Jackson, Deputy Editor, SPOTY; Jo McCusker, Editor, BBC Sport, Documentaries; and Natalie Pirks, BBC Sports News Correspondent

11.30am-12.15pm: How to Get Ahead in Entertainment Television

Join host Trish Adudu as she talks to Charlie Irwin (BAFTA award winning Exec Producer Britain’s Got Talent, other credits include Saturday Night Takeaway and I’m A Celebrity); Francesca Palmer (Series/Senior Producer of Let It Shine and The Voice UK Series 1 – 5, now Development Executive at Panda TV); and Mark Sidaway (BAFTA award winning Entertainment Exec Producer who produced ten series of The X Factor and developed Pop Idol). They will be giving you top tips on how to break into this highly competitive, yet incredibly rewarding field.

12.30pm-1.15pm: Everything You Need to Know About Making Factual Programmes

Suzanne Virdee hosts, discussing this popular and intriguing area of programming with Jodie Allt, Production Co-ordinator, Blue Planet II; Simon Evans, Executive Editor, Love Productions (GBBOBritain’s Missing Top Model) and Jeff Wilkinson,  award-winning Series Director/Producer Director (Celebs in Solitary, The Big Crash Diet Experiment, Panorama)

1.30pm-2.15pm: The Essential Guide to Short Form Content 

Dan Foster from the BBC Academy reveals everything you need to know about creating great short form content. Learn about the different types of short form; how to create content, plan, and distribute material that stands out online and encourages people to share it!

2.30pm-3.15pm: Get Ready For Your TV Job

Managing Director of and TV Line Producer, Jude Winstanley guides you through the essential tools to equip you successfully for a job behind the TV camera including essential TV freelancer tips, job hunting and writing a CV.

3.30pm-4.15pm: The Grand Finale – Love Island, Radio 1 and BBC Three

Nasfim Haque, Commissioning Editor, BBC Three; Aled Haydn Jones, Head of Programmes, BBC Radio 1; and Mike Spencer, Series Editor, Love Island reveal what it’s like to work on these audience winners and reveal the secret to their success.



You can have a go at presenting, to act in a drama, make content on your phones and much more:

Lights, camera, action – take your place in the crew of BBC One’s popular daytime drama Doctors.

Join the Midlands Today team and make the editorial decisions on what goes into the programme.

Commentate on your favourite football team for BBC WM Sport.

Join the BBC engineers on a magic carpet ride … and learn a few tricks of the TV trade.

Come and talk about all things technology with the BBC Birmingham Blue Room team – showcasing tomorrow’s BBC, today. Try the amazing augmented reality apps and exciting VR content including a sneak peek at the highly anticipated ‘Berlin Blitz’ the latest Virtual Reality experience from BBC’s VR Hub. Get hands on and find out all about the jobs behind the tech.

Find out how to spot ‘Fake News’. Join us for this exciting workshop and get checking facts and sources, and filtering our false information.

Join us for a portable green screen experience where you will get a chance to present the news and you can play an interactive game developed by award-winning Aardman where the player experiences being a BBC journalist in the heart of the newsroom.

Get top tips on how to shoot video on your Smartphone: What’s the illusion of depth? What’s the rule of thirds? Why do selfies always look bad? Learn basic principles for using your smartphone to create broadcast quality sound and video. These drop-in sessions take place across the day and are suitable for any mobile device, but all camera apps mentioned will be for the iPhone.  Please bring your phone, earphones (with an in-built mic) and a selfie stick (if you have one available) to get the most out of the session.



This event is open to everyone but is designed for those with no more than two years’ television experience. Tickets for full members of the Royal Television Society are complimentary but MUST be booked in advance, 1 tickets will be allocated per member – please provide your membership number when booking.

Click here to book your place.

Early Bird Price £5 per ticket until 1st July 2019, £10 a ticket after 1st July 2019. Fees are plus VAT. Tickets cannot be purchased at the door. Group bookings are discounted to £5 per person. For group bookings (over 10 people) please email

All tickets are non-refundable. Please note – Minors must be accompanied by a fee paying adult.


Event details

Mon, 7 October 2019

10:00 – 16:00 BST

Edgbaston Stadium


B5 7QU


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Worcester man wins short film competition

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Worcester filmmaker, Daniel McKee is the overall winner of the Beer Town Film Festival 2019, for his short production, “If you never answered x”. Even better, it was Daniel’s first ever fiction film, and it was judged the best by four award-winning filmmakers. Daniel is already looking ahead.

He said: “It is amazing to win an award, let alone the entire competition. Already the judges in my category have gone on to share the film and given it a new lease of life and I am definitely spending the prize money on my next film.”

A spokesman said: “The Fiction Short category was the most popular again this year attracting over half the entries. Daniel McKee’s “if you never answered x” topped the vote for this category judged by four award-winning filmmakers themselves, Deborah Haywood, Giles Alderson, Dom Lenoir and David Morris alongside renowned TV actor Steven Hartley. McKee is a 27-year old London-based filmmaker from Worcester who studied filmmaking Arts University Bournemouth and usually makes short animated films. The film examines the heart-rending narrative of a missing person through the responses and notifications on a mobile phone.”

Now in its second year, the filmmaking competition ran from October 2018 to February 2019 and attracted 739 entries from entrants from all over the UK. Entrants made short films for six different categories, representing 86 hours, 24 minutes and 18 seconds of viewing time.

Marston’s Marketing Manager, Kirsty Polmeer said: “The standard of entries this year was much higher making it an extremely difficult job, but I would also like to say a huge congratulations to Daniel McKee for his gripping and highly original film.




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National Lottery Cinema Day

National Lottery Cinema Day 2019 – Register Your Venue

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Following a successful trial last year and to celebrate the National Lottery’s support for film, on Sunday 25th August, National Lottery Cinema Day will be returning bigger and better!

National Lottery Cinema Day is an event from Camelot and the BFI where Lotto players can claim a free cinema ticket (at participating venues). Lotto players will be able to book their tickets in advance via an NLCD website run by ShowFilmFirst. Camelot will then reimburse venues for the free tickets (up to an agreed maximum value).

This year will expand to include a national multiplex chain alongside Film Audience Network (FAN) members across the UK. If you are not a FAN member (or are not sure), please contact your local Film Hub to find out about becoming a member and the other benefits being a FAN member brings.

As well as being able to offer audiences free tickets, there will be hundreds of venues taking part all across the UK, supported by a national press and media campaign. It could be a great opportunity for participating venues and exhibitors to raise their profile, reach new audiences and encourage back infrequent attenders.

For enquiries, contact


How can venues take part?

This year will expand to include a national multiplex chain alongside Film Audience Network (FAN) members across the UK. If you are not a FAN member (or are not sure), please contact
your local Film Hub to find out about becoming a member and the other benefits being a FAN member brings.

Click here to register. You will be asked to fill in venue information and confirm you agree to the terms and conditions for participation. Note – completing the registration form does not guarantee participation. After submitting the form, you will be contacted by the NLCD project team to confirm your place.

Registration is open for venues who wish to particpate. The official website will go live with venue listings around mid-June.

Ticket Subsidies

You will be reimbursed the regular price of your tickets. For example, if your normal adult ticket price is £5 and you have 100 attendees, you will be reimbursed £500.
There will be a maximum cap of £7.50 for the per-ticket subsidy to ensure as many venues as possible can take part. This means even if your ticket prices are above £7.50, you will only be
reimbursed the maximum ticket subsidy for each free ticket you issue on the day. For example if your normal ticket price is £9 and you have 100 attendees, you will be reimbursed £750.

For venues with fixed capacities, the number of free tickets available for each show will initially be set at 70% of the seating capacity for each screen. Venues are free to sell the remaining 30% of tickets as normal, although we suggest making it clear to customers that they may be able to claim a free ticket as part of NLCD. For venues or screens without fixed seating capacities, 100% of tickets can be subsidised (subject to each customer showing an eligible Lotto ticket).

NLCD should apply to all screens and all shows. This will make the offer at your venue simpler to communicate to your audiences, and prevent any confusion or dissatisfaction from some
screenings not being included. However, the final decision as to any exceptions rests with each venue. Should you wish to exclude any show from NLCD, you should exclude the show from the show details that are sent to the NLCD team. Camelot are not able to subsidise any free tickets for under-16s.

What venues can take part?

You need to either be a venue that regularly screens films to a paying audience, or an exhibitor that regularly uses a specific venue. You do not need to have been a recipient of National Lottery funding in any form to take part.


The Independent Cinema Office in its capacity as Film Hub South East will be the co-ordinating body on behalf of FAN and the central contact point for cinemas. All enquiries should be
addressed to the dedicated email

See full guide here.




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made of truth

Get Funding from BFI Doc Society’s Short Film Fund – Deadline July 9th

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Made of Truth: BFI Doc Society Short Film Fund is now open! In our second year, we invite passionate filmmakers to take the temperature of our world and create electrifying films for the UK and beyond. As part of BFI Network, the Fund supports all forms of docs – personal stories, hybrids, artist films, essays, observational and social issue projects. This is an urgent opportunity to tell stormy stories which reflect our turbulent times.

Made of Truth: BFI Doc Society Fund is committed to building a diverse community of filmmakers and working with people from underserved backgrounds including BAME, LGBTQ+, mixed ability and non-filmmaking talent. We’re reaching out to new storytellers from around the country and all communities and are especially keen to increase the number of projects originated outside London.

Projects will receive creative and mentorship support from the BFI Doc Society team, and relevant industry partners. Filmmakers do not need to have a producer or production company to apply. We can facilitate partnerships with producers.



BFI Doc Society and can fund ten short films with budget contributions of up to £15,000 and are happy to look at ideas of any length up to 40 minutes. Once selected, films will need to be delivered by the end of January 2020. Documentary filmmakers and those with related experience over the age of 18 are welcome to apply.

All films have to pass the cultural test in order to be eligible. Download Guidelines here.

Please check out the comprehensive guidelines which should help with any burning questions. If you can’t find what you need, please contact the BFI Doc Society Production Manager Hannah Bush Bailey at


To Apply

Applications will be accepted until noon on Tuesday 9th of July 2019.

The only way we can assess projects and offer advice is for applicants to submit their proposal and materials via our online application system. We will then be in touch with all applicants within 5 weeks of the fund closing to let you know if you’ve been shortlisted for the second application stage. You can preview the application before applying.

Apply here.




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ScreenSkills Offering £500,000 Bursaries for Screen Industry Professionals

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ScreenSkills has committed more than £500,000 in 2019/20 to bursaries for individual screen professionals for training and career opportunities. New entrants to the screen industries will now be eligible for some strands of financial support for the first time. Previous rules meant that applicants needed a minimum of two professional credits.

The application process has also been simplified, with a single point of entry covering all the different funds available. New rules mean that applications will be considered for the first time for items such as driving lessons, software licensing or wet weather equipment because not being able to afford these items has been identified as a barrier to progressing in the screen industries.

Support will continue to be offered for childcare, accommodation and travel in a move to open up opportunities to people wanting to return to the industry after a parenting break and for those who need initial help in taking up opportunities to advance their career.

The funding, which is increased from previous years, is supported by the BFI awarding national lottery funds as well as industry contributions from the High-end, Children’s TV and Television Skills Funds.

Apply for a bursary

This bursary will be open for applications until March 31st, 2020.

Priority will be given to applications from people who are working in skills gap or shortage areas in the industry. Other factors which may be taken into account in awarding funds include income and whether the proposed course is one recognised by ScreenSkills. Some funding is reserved for groups under-represented in the screen industries. Click here to read the full bursary guidelines which you will need to complete your application.

Follow this link to apply. 

Every bursary application will be assessed by a senior manager at the final stage. We aim to offer funding wherever possible, but we cannot promise that all applications will be successful due to limited funding and skills shortage priorities.




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Makeup MasterClass

FREE WFTV Midlands Hair and MakeUp Masterclass – June 20th

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Do you dream of breaking into the world of hair and make-up design? Whether it’s designing a wig for a period drama, prosthetic make up for a zombie movie or making up film stars, find out what it takes to become a top hair and make-up designer by joining this masterclass on Thursday, 20th June at The Custard Factory.

Women in Film and TV (WFTV) Midlands is hosting a Hair and MakeUp Masterclass with Oscar-nominated and multi-award winning film and television designer Veronica McAleer, from the Academy of Film & Media Makeup, Birmingham.

You will benefit from hair, make-up and prosthetic demonstrations plus an introduction to the technical side of makeup artistry and the skills that are a basic requirement of a makeup training. Plus, you might get chosen for a 1940s period style makeover! An event packed with tips on lips, eyeliners and bases, if this sounds like your dream career then book fast.

Sign up here for your FREE ticket.


Event Details

DATE: Thursday, 20th June 2019

LOCATION: The Custard Factory, Gibb Street, B9 4AA

TIME: 1830-2030

Refreshments provided.

Free – book your spot here.


About Makup: Academy of Makeup

The Academy offers exceptional yet affordable training in all aspects of hair design and makeup. All students receive personal attention from Veronica, who is still very much active in the industry, having worked last year in the Crowd Room on the  live action remake of  ‘Dumbo‘. In 2018  Veronica Designed the new  Back In School series for Wall to Wall Productions.

Connect with the Academy here:

TWITTER:- @makupacademy

INSTAGRAM:- mmakup_academy

FACEBOOK:- Makup Academy




Summer Party

WM Film & TV Summer Party – July 11th

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Mark your calendar for the West Midlands screen industries networking ‘SUMMER PARTY’. Film Birmingham, WFTV Midlands, RTS Midlands and Birmingham City University: School of Media are hosting an industry event where you can relax, socialise and network. This event is for anyone working within the television and film industry, new entrants are welcome too! Aspiring or experienced, researchers or scriptwriters, production managers or runners, comedy, factual or drama, please come along!

This summer party will be held in the ‘Secret Garden’ at the Library of Birmingham. The location offers a scenic view of the city. Mingle and network over drinks and nibbles; you can informally meet employers, fellow freelancers and industry newcomers.

This event is free to attend, but you must book your place.

Note: these events are always over-subscribed. If you have booked, but find yourself unable to attend please let cancel your RSVP as soon as you can so someone else might attend.


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