The BFI has now opened applications for the Short Form Animation Fund, which aims to support growth in the UK animation sector. With awards of £30,000 to £120,000 available for successful projects, the Fund, which is now in its second round, is seeking applications from a wide array of UK animators and will back projects which represent a significant advancement in their work, enable progression and open up new opportunities.

Supporting higher-budgeted animated work of up to 15 minutes in length, the Short Form Animation Fund can support narrative short-form projects in any animated technique or genre and for any platform, including cinema, digital platforms, and immersive. It responds to priorities set out in BFI2022, the BFI’s five-year strategy, which identified animation as a focus area, and a commitment to encourage continued experimentation in form and content. The BFI is committed to supporting a diverse range of talent and addressing underrepresentation so is actively encouraging ethnically diverse teams to apply.

Within this year’s round of the fund is a new partnership with StoryFutures Academy – the UK’s National Centre for Immersive Storytelling run by the National Film and Television School (NFTS) and Royal Holloway, University of London (RHUL) – who will contribute a grant of up to £50,000 each to support two animated projects that are intended to be immersive in nature, through virtual or augmented reality content.

Projects funded through the Short Form Animation Fund will benefit from the oversight of a BFI Film Fund Executive and a dedicated animation specialist. If teams would benefit from a relationship with an experienced studio or company, introductions could be facilitated. Projects supported by a grant from StoryFutures Academy will also receive additional oversight from a specialist in immersive content.

The BFI continues to support animation talent through BFI NETWORK with awards of up to £15k per project available for filmmakers at the early stages of their career. In addition, the government-funded Young Audiences Content Fund from the BFI supports the creation of distinct, high-quality content for children and young audiences to be broadcast on free-to-access, Ofcom regulated television channels and online platforms.

Who can Apply

A director, or writer/director with at least three director credits on previous pieces of animated work. One of these should have received notable industry recognition. ​The applicant must be credited as the director on all three, rather than animation director. Please check the eligibility criteria in the guidelines which you can find here before beginning your application.

Filmmakers with less experience, including those at the start of their careers, should visit BFI NETWORK. This scheme supports new filmmakers with networking, professional development opportunities and funding.

Apply to the Short Form Animation Fund

Read more and apply here. Deadline for applications is 9am on 16 August 2021.


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