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18-25 year-old short filmmakers can apply for £10,000 fund

CREATIVE ENGLAND has announced plans to continue its successful collaboration with the National Youth Theatre (NYT) and global broadcaster Sky on the short film initiative shortFLIX.

With applications due to open again this autumn, the programme will open its doors to the UK’s undiscovered and ambitious filmmaking talent from diverse backgrounds with a story to tell about their community, heritage and identity, giving them the opportunity to make their first short film.

shortFLIX will be open for applications to young people aged 18-25 who are not currently in full-time education, employment or training, as the programme addresses the issue of equal opportunities within the creative industries. It draws on the expertise, network and experience of leading industry experts and stakeholders to take a longlist of projects selected for development from initial idea to script or outline stage, leading to five original films being selected for production and broadcast to UK audiences.

The initiative was first launched in March 2017 and the five talented winners' unique and personal projects will be made into short films for Sky Arts with a budget of £10,000 each. These include Dior Clarke and Blain Shing’s Batty Boy, an uncompromising look at black gay culture in London; Abena Taylor-Smith’s film Ladies Day, a warm-hearted story about a young black woman coming out against the backdrop of an Afro-Caribbean hair-shop in Sheffield, and Losing It by Ben Robins, a pitch black sex-comedy.

SPOKESMAN: Noel Clarke represents film industry success as an ambassador for shortFLIX

The stories were chosen for their intensity and authenticity, and for the filmmakers’ compelling passion to tell them. All the films are based on or inspired by the personal experience of the filmmakers.

Following an open call to talent, with ambassadors Noel Clarke, pictured below, Riz Ahmed and Ellie Kendrick, 26 participants underwent training and intensive development, gaining significant practical skills and experience.

The next round of shortFLIX will aim to provide the same unique opportunities as young filmmakers take their first steps in the industry.

Paul Ashton, Head of Film at Creative England, said:

"The sheer force of talent and engagement we have seen so far on shortFLIX has been humbling and inspiring, and has absolutely confirmed our belief that the talent is out there in unusual places, looking for the chance to realise what they know they have in them.

"We're delighted to announce that we will continue this flourishing partnership with Sky and NYT. We strive to provide opportunities to those who otherwise may not have access to the industry, and with our partners we can't wait to see the next wave of unheard voices from across the UK wash over us."

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