SHORT FILM FUNDING

THE SHORT FILM FUND IS CURRENTLY CLOSED IN ENGLAND. THE NEXT ROUND OF APPLICATIONS WILL REOPEN IN AUGUST 2021

 

Note: Applications for the autumn round of funding will now open on the 30th of August. 

 

Our Short Film funding programme supports projects with directors based in England and is run in partnership with the BFI NETWORK Talent Executives who work with filmmakers on the delivery of funded projects. For directors based outside England or for filmmakers looking for documentary funding opportunities, please see our Funding Finder.

This fund supports the production costs of fiction shorts, in both live action and animation. We want to support short films that respond to our core objectives, which are to support:

  • The early careers of ambitious filmmakers;
  • Filmmaking that takes risks on talent, form and content;
  • Work that recognises the quality of difference – in perspective, in talent, in recruitment; 
  • Work with cultural relevance or progressive ideas;
  • Work from filmmakers based throughout the nation, not just in traditional industry centres.

We support standalone short films and this can include projects that have the potential, further down the line, to be developed into other forms or formats (e.g. a feature film, content in serial form). The fund is intended to stimulate new ideas and stories, so it doesn’t support adaptations of existing material. We welcome applications for amounts throughout the available budget range up to a maximum of £15,000. We are seeking applications for films of any length up to a maximum of 15 minutes. 

Our funding is accompanied by creative oversight of the short film by a BFI NETWORK Talent Executive. As well as working with filmmakers prior to and during production, the Talent Executives may be able to advise you on:

  • Finding screening opportunities regionally and further afield;
  • Ways to meet potential collaborators for your project;
  • Festival strategy for your film;
  • Other means to gain industry exposure for your work.

APPLICATION TIMELINES

The Short Film Fund opens for two six-week application windows in the Spring and Autumn of each year. We will publish the application dates six months in advance so that filmmakers can plan their applications, polish their draft scripts and find collaborators in good time. The dates for the next two application windows are as follows:

2021/22 | Spring Round

Applications open: Monday 26 April 2021

Applications close: Monday 7 June 2021 (CLOSED)

Deadline for securing additional finance: Monday 16 August 2021

Final Funding Decisions Announced: By end of September 2021

 

2021/22 | Autumn Round

Applications open: Friday 30 August 2021

Applications close: Friday 1 October 2021

Final Funding Decisions Announced: By end of March 2022

GUIDELINES

Please read the full funding guidelines before you complete the application form.

AUDIO GUIDELINES

If you wish to listen to the audio guidelines for this fund, please use the link below.

APPLYING

Before you proceed to the application form via the link below you will be asked to create an account. Following submission of the application to the BFI, applicants will be sent a unique application reference number for their records. 

If you have already submitted an application and would like to review it at any point, you can log into your account here.

Download our budget template here.

Download our Shorts Animation budget template here.

Download our NETWORK Production & Shoot Schedule here.

Preview the BFI NETWORK Short Film Fund application here.

ASSISTANCE DURING THE APPLICATION PROCESS

We can provide assistance to applicants who are D/deaf, hard-of-hearing, Disabled or neurodiverse people, and people with sight loss, where this support is needed in order for someone to make an application to the Film Fund. Visit Access support for BFI Film Fund applicants for information.

FINDING COLLABORATORS FOR YOUR PROJECT

If you are looking a writer, director or producer to work with on your project, click here for some ideas on how to do this.