Independent Cinema Office Blog

News and views on the world of independent film

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News Round Up July 2017

Posted Thursday 13 July 2017 by Ellen Reay in General, News Round-up

India On Film collection 3

ICO News

  • We're pleased to announce we're bringing nine treasures of Indian cinema on tour this Autumn with India on Film. Our carefully curated season spans the breadth of the subcontinent's rich cinematic history, taking in everything from early neorealist treasures - some lost for decades - to a 1995 musical Baz Luhrmann would envy. We've negotiated exclusive booking terms on these rare DCP and 35mm prints, as well as a number of added value introductions. Find out more about the season here.
  • Applications are now open for REACH: Strategic Audience Development. Got an idea to boost audiences but could do with ironing out the kinks? Benefit from expert guidance to ensure you get the results you want. There are a number of bursaries available to help you with the course fees, accommodation and travel. Find out what past participants thought of the course and apply by Monday 24 July 2017.
  • The best British debuts of the last twenty years are back where they belong on the big screen now that BAFTA Debuts is touring the country. Think your end of summer programme could do with the boost of a contemporary British classic? It's not too late to join in the tour! With great films and added content from star directors such as Amma Asante, Asif Kapadia and Joe Wright, it's a great time to celebrate the best British filmmaking talent
  • Our fifth programme from our archive touring programme, Britain on Film: LGBT Britain, launched at the end of June with a screening at BFI Southbank in partnership with Pride London. These films spanning 1909 to 1994 document the profoundly courageous activism and the shifting personal and political attitudes to LGBT people throughout a time of explosive social change. Find out how to book Britain on Film: LGBT Britain for your venue from as little as £20. Check out the trailer!
  • We had a great maiden trip to Phoenix in Leicester for Summer Screening Days last weekend. Thanks again to the BFI, Filmbankmedia and Cinema For All for their support and all the distributors who provided us with exciting new releases. Our next Screening Days will take place at HOME in Manchester from the 4 to 6 November (subject to confirmation). Keep an eye on your inbox for more information in the coming months.
  • From the 19-24 June, film festival professionals from all over the world gathered in Edinburgh for our Developing Your Film Festival course. Find out some news on the #DYFF17 hashtag and we're sure to have a round up in the future.


  • There are lots of great vacancies available on our jobs page at the minute, from working with Film Hub Wales to projecting at the legendary Prince Charles Cinema.
  • Are you 16-19? Passionate about film? Want a career in the film industry? Then the BFI Film Academy  Programme is for you.  Open to young people from anywhere in the UK and from any background, the BFI Film Academy offers a real chance to be part of our future film industry. Apply now.
  • Are you an exhibitor in the West Midlands? Film Hub SWWM have got free shorts you can show before your features. Find out more.
  • Call for Submissions! Have you run a great access project recently? BFI Film Audience Network would love you to submit a short written case study based on your project. Check out The Bigger Picture for example case studies. You can download the template here and submit your case studies (including hi-res pictures!) by 25 July to Toki Allison, BFI FAN Access Officer:
  • Applications are now open for Cinema For All's Film Society of the Year Awards. There are 11 awards to apply for, from our newest award Best Single Event, to the overall prize of Film Society or Community Cinema of the Year. So get applying!
  • As part of Cinema Rediscovered Film Hub SWWM are running a practice-based afternoon, featuring our own Jemma Buckley, looking at different approaches to presenting screen heritage events. To sign up, register via this form by 14 July.
  • The Smalls are launching a new initiative - The Smalls Film Fund – an annual production grant that will be awarded to a member of our community to develop and produce the short film of their dreams. The fund aims to be the launching pad for filmmakers to gain the momentum and thrust necessary to not only create ground-breaking, cutting-edge films, but to also drive their careers full steam ahead. Find out more:
  • Film London's short film scheme, London Calling, has opened again for applications. London Calling nurtures and champions the capital’s most exciting breakthrough filmmaking talent with a comprehensive package of production funding, training and expert mentoring. Apply now.
  • Aged 18-25 and love cinema? Raindance Film Festival are offering special discounted 18-25 festival passes to this year's festival taking place from 20 September - 1 October 2017.
  • THIS WAY UP 17 invites film exhibitors from across the UK and Europe to come together to explore new ideas, emerging audience trends and the future of cinema.  It's taking place at Hull Truck Theatre on Tuesday 7 and Wednesday 8 November 2017. Book your pass for This Way Up conference now.
  • Filmbankmedia have relaunched their Innovation Fund. Two awards of £3,000 and £2,000 are available for film societies old and new who want to try new things. Equipment, workshops, working with new groups and more: this is your chance to go above and beyond.  

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News Round Up April 2017

Posted Thursday 13 April 2017 by Duncan Carson in News Round-up

London Line 373

ICO News

As ever, LOTS going on with ICO this month. Can't stop, won't stop!

Opportunities and Calls for Submissions

  • The BFI have launched their revamped Audience Fund, now replacing the distribution, film festivals, programming development and Neighbourhood Cinema funding. If you want to boost screen and audience diversity and inclusivity, get applying! 
  • The BFI Film Audience Network want to hear about how your venue is doing in developing accessible cinema. Whether you're well on your way or need support or have questions, it's well worth filling out their short survey as it will help shape the support they can offer in the coming years. Deadline Monday.
  • Scottish exhibitors should check out Film Hub Scotland's Atomic scheme which offers £1,000 (from a total pot of £10,000) for projects to broaden audiences and increase engagement with a diverse range of cinema. Good goal, good money: get applying by 15 May.
  • Speaking of cold hard cash to do make your dreams come true, Filmbankmedia have relaunched their Innovation Fund. Two awards of £3,000 and £2,000 are available for film societies old and new who want to try new things. Equipment, workshops, working with new groups and more: this is your chance to go above and beyond.  
  • The full line up for the essential Black Film British Cinema conference is now online and there's some heavy hitters in the mix.

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News Round Up February 2017

Posted Thursday 2 March 2017 by Ellen Reay in General, News Round-up

screening days march

ICO News

It's a busy time in the ICO office, with new training programmes, distribution titles and research keeping us on our toes. Here's a taste of what we've got going on:

  • After receiving our highest ever number of applications for our flagship Cultural Cinema Exhibition training course, we've now confirmed the list of lucky delegates following a (very) tough selection process. Thank you to all who applied!
  • Screening Days is drawing ever closer, with only a few passes left for Monday. Our final line-up boasts 24 of the best upcoming independent and world cinema releases, as well as award-winning shorts and a range of capacity-building sessions to get you thinking about your programme and organisational identity. If you missed out on the full three-day pass, there's still the chance to see some of our great titles - The Other Side of Hope, Their Finest, I Am Not Your Negro, to name a few - on Monday, but passes are running low!
  • Our third Britain on Film on Tour programme is now available to book! Britain on Film: Black Britain gathers archive films from 1901 to 1985 to form a rare and valuable exploration of previously little-seen depictions of black British life on screen, from scenes in the Edwardian collieries of the early 19th century to partying on the streets of London during Carnival. Previous Britain on Film programmes - Railways and Rural Life - are still available to book.
  • With more speakers confirming by the day, our international Developing Your Film Festival training course - this year running in Edinburgh alongside EIFF - is shaping up to be one of our best. If you want to learn from the minds behind the world's best film festivals this is your chance! Find out more and how to apply here.
  • It is happening excitement builds for new Twin Peaks, we're whetting your Lynchian appetites with a re-release of his journey through the city of dreams in Mulholland Drive. The 'best film of the 21st century' is back in cinemas 14 April in a new 4K restoration approved by David Lynch himself.
  • Amidst all the drama of Sunday's Academy Awards® you might have spotted a clip of another classic we're re-releasing this year. The first recipient of the Academy Award® for Best Foreign-Language Film, Federico Fellini's La Strada, will be back on the big screen this May. A favourite of filmmakers including Martin Scorsese and Jane Campion, La Strada is a treat for cinephiles old and new.
  • While most of our Deaf Awareness Training days are over now, with just a few spaces left for next week's session at the QFT in Belfast, our commitment to improve cinema provision for the D/deaf and hard of hearing is ongoing. We're asking film exhibitors to tell us what they do to welcome D/deaf and hard of hearing audiences into their venues, and what obstacles are standing in the way of truly great provision. If you have a spare 5 minutes, we'd really appreciate it if you could fill in our short survey on this topic.

Opportunities and Calls for Submissions

  • Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival is now open for entries! Entries are welcome from any genre, and in any format and on any subject. All single screen works under 60 minutes in length will automatically be eligible for selection in the Festival's New Cinema Competition. For details and to submit your film, visit
  • Submissions are now open for London Short Film Festival 15th anniversary in 2018. LSFF accepts both UK and International submissions, presenting a diverse and confrontational programme that holds up a mirror to our rapidly changing world. Find out more and how to submit:
  • Are you aged 18-25 and not in full-time education, training or employment? Do you have a brilliant idea for a short film? Would you like training, mentorship, funding and a professional crew to help you make it? Creative England have teamed up with Sky Arts for SHORTFLIX to provide that very opportunity. Find out more about the scheme and how to apply: Deadline 5pm on Wednesday 8 March 2017.
  • Are you a film academic in the early stages of your career? Kings College London are seeking a scholar with a commitment to interdisciplinary research and education and a special interest in Film Studies for their Liberal Arts Fellowship. Find out more here.
  • There are a whole host of great opportunities listed on our Jobs page, including several positions at the brand new depot cinema in Lewes. If you're an experienced marketing, finance or front of house manager, you can really make your mark on this exciting new endeavour.
  • Read more

News Round Up January 2017

Posted Thursday 19 January 2017 by Duncan Carson in News Round-up

Mulholland Drive

ICO News

We've got TONNES of great projects keeping us busy this month, so let's get straight to it:

  • The big news for us is the relaunch of Cultural Cinema Exhibition. This is one of our most loved training courses and with good reason. People are always asking how to break into the indie cinema scene, and this is genuinely one of the best ways to do it. If you're dying to become a programmer, or want to start a cinema, or generally do amazing things in film, this is the big one. Applications needed very soon!
  • Screening Days, your chance to see all of the upcoming indie releases that matter before anyone else, is taking great shape. We'll have over twenty films in the final line up, but what we have already is looking strong with some of the big festival films making the line up. Lady Macbeth, Berlin Syndrome and I Am Not Your Negro are all going to be buzz titles in the next few months, so why not come and get ahead of the curve?
  • We're always telling people we only work with the best, and so it's a delight to be able to announce that we're reissuing 'the greatest film of the 21st Century' in April. Mulholland Drive is David Lynch's noir headtrip starring Naomi Watts and is available in a new director-approved 4K restoration. We're releasing it on 14 April and you can feel the pure existential dread of what lies behind the diner once more!
  • Speaking of classics, we're bringing La Strada back to screens in May. It's sixty years since Fellini's classic won the first ever Best Foreign Language Film Oscar, so it's a good chance to look back at past winners and relive Giulietta Masina's incredible performance and Nino Rota's fantastic score.
  • Releasing Power in Our Hands last year gave us a clear idea of how much Deaf audiences love the cinema how much needs to be done to make it a welcoming space for them. We're running six free workshops across the UK to help your venue understand Deaf people's needs. We're stopping at Home in Manchester, Broadway in Nottingham, Stratford East Picturehouse in London, Tyneside in Newcastle, Plymouth Arts Centre and Queens Film Theatre in Belfast. See how to get involved here.
  • We are always looking for ways to make the big screen experience as powerful as possible, so we're very happy about our FREE Film Formats workshop at Showroom in Sheffield. Whether you're looking to start showing films on 16mm or 35mm or you want to upgrade from DVD screenings to DCP, this is the place to get started.
  • For the fourth time, we're sharing the incredible British talent in the BAFTA Shorts touring programme. Watching shorts is a rare and compelling experience in the cinema and we can bring one of the filmmakers to your venue for free. Check out the details here.
  • Developing Your Film Festival is our biggest international course and this is the first year it'll be at Edinburgh International Film Festival! If your film festival could do with bigger audiences, better profile and larger income (and who doesn't?) this is for you.
  • Britain on Film: Rural Life is ready to go out to venues. This is a moving, funny and eye-opening view of our countryside. Our Railways package proved that there is a big audience for archive film. Check out the trailer to get a flavour of the breadth of what we've crammed in.

Opportunities and Calls for Submissions

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