News and Opportunities: March 2020 round up

Posted on March 26, 2020 by Jenna Roberts

Categories: News Round-Up

ICO news

  • These are strange and anxious times, and we’ve compiled a blog of ideas, advice and resources to help independent cinemas navigate their way through COVID-19 and its ongoing uncertainty. We’d love to hear from you on what you’re doing to support your venue, your staff or yourself, either on TwitterFacebook or by email.
  • We are conducting a sector-wide survey on your response to coronavirus so we can create a picture of those most at risk. We’re keen for all industry workers and employers to respond here.
  • On that note, we’re looking for pitches for the ICO blog. We’ve got budget to commission new writing and are looking for your thoughts and stories on fortifying independent cinema through shutdown and post-crisis. More details here.
  • Make plans to grow audiences when you re-open and nourish yourself in this quieter period with some training: our REACH: Strategic Audience Development course is now free to access (usually £50) until Friday 3 April to all people subscribed to our e-newsletter. Subscribe to our e-newsletter today and we’ll contact with you how to access the course for free. Featuring case studies from Hardish Virk, Dundee Contemporary Art’s Mike Tait and VS1 Productions’ David Ellington on reaching young, d/Deaf and Black, Asian and ethnically diverse communities.
  • For film festivals forced to postpone, we recommend our free six week Developing Your Film Festival online course to ensure you’re in the strongest shape you can be when the industry is back on its feet. Get enrolled now.
  • We’re still accepting expressions of interest from South East based designers to work on the BFI NETWORK South East branding. Drop us a line.
  • Remember we have lots of free online resources available on our website to help you with your future planning, like our newly added Green Cinema and Developing Visually Impaired Audiences toolkits.
  • As always, we’re here to help and support you. We may be working from home, but our inboxes are always open. Get in touch at


  • The BFI and The Film and TV Charity have partnered to create an Emergency Relief Fund for the film and television industries, established with a £1m donation from Netflix. All current info here, and sign up to the charity’s mailing list to be the first to hear when the fund launches.
  • Arts Council England are making £20 million available for artists, creative practitioners and freelancers across the cultural sectors. More details will be released 30 March, and potential applicants will need to register by 3 April.
  • The UK Cinema Worker Solidarity Fund is crowdfunding for its second round of support for those who’ve found themselves abruptly out of work. Donate if you can, or apply here.
  • MUBI are offering cinema exhibitors the opportunity to share 90 days of streaming with their members and loyal audiences, for free.
  • Now’s the time for community. Both the Creative Industries Federation and Cinema Technology Community are offering free memberships during the crisis, and the UK Cinemas Network and UK Film Exhibition & Distribution Freelancer Network Facebook groups have fast become integral spaces for industry organising and checking in on one another.
  • Looking to make moves online? Rep Cinema International’s first podcast speaks with recently postponed film festivals who’ve rapidly retooled to host their programmes on the internet. Listen in.
  • Applications remain open for the FLAMIN Fellowship. Six spots available for early-career moving image artists to nab £2,500 funding, bespoke mentoring, professional practice workshops and more. Apply by 5 May.
  • Check out Film Hub Wales’ free Screening Room, featuring the latest screeners of some of the best new films from across the globe, exclusively for FAN members. Latest additions include And then we Danced and Papicha, thanks to Peccadillo Pictures. To view the screeners, please email with your organisation name and Hub region. Film suggestions are also welcome. You’ll then be supplied with a password to access the site. Find your local film hub here to become a member.
  • Cinema For All has put together this handy guide on how to set up your own online film club.
  • Club des Femmes has set up their Culture Club, where each week they’ll be announcing and discussing one object of culture, whether that’s a book, an album, a podcast, a film or tv series. Join in the dialogue.

Good reads (COVID and non-COVID related):

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