News & Opportunities:
February 2021 round up

Posted on February 25, 2021 by Sami Abdul-Razzak

ICO News

  • We’ve launched a new series of core skills webinars to provide practical learning on a range of topics designed specifically for those working in independent film exhibition or distribution. Our first three sessions are on CRM and email marketing, social media advertising, and researching screening materials and film rights.
  • Applications to the UK Film Festival Roundtable, supported by BFI FAN, are now open. This course has been launched to provide development opportunities to film festival professionals in the UK and will be delivered online across six weeks beginning in March, with sessions on strategic planning, audience development, sponsorship and more.
  • Our first Screening Days event of 2021 will run online from 15-19 March, bringing cinema professionals together to watch upcoming films and discuss how to build a better indie cinema scene. Confirmed titles so far include Berlinale 2020 Golden Bear winner There Is No EvilThe Father starring Olivia Colman and Anthony Hopkins, and Kelly Reichardt’s First Cow.
  • We’re looking for some new pieces for our blog! If you have an idea for an article about film exhibition which you’d like us to commission, please read our blog guidelines in the first instance. If you think your pitch is a good fit, please get in touch.
  • As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to impact our personal and working lives, focusing on your wellbeing has never been more important. In a recent blog post we heard about the mental health support available for film workers, some advice on managing your wellbeing and a personal account of an individual’s experience during the pandemic.
  • Our recent Black Film Bulletin blog series touched on Black filmmakers of the past and present, some of whose work has not been widely seen. We asked Adam Murray (Come The Revolution) and Rico Johnson-Sinclair (CineQ) to to share the Black filmmakers and creatives they are most influenced and inspired by – and whose work, in their opinion, hasn’t yet received the recognition it deserves. Read their responses here.
  • We continue to be here to help and support you through these difficult times. Get in touch at:


  • The UK Government has announced a roadmap to cautiously ease lockdown restrictions in England. Cinemas will be able to reopen no earlier than 17 May, though drive-in cinemas may be able to reopen from 12 April.
  • The Community Cinema Mini Conference is taking place on 27 March. Join Cinema For All online for a day of panels, talks, masterclasses and networking for volunteer-led cinemas.
  • The programme for this year’s BFI Flare has been revealed! Explore the line-up now and join them online from 17-28 March.
  • Available until 28 February, Reframing the Fat Body is a programme of shorts curated by Grace Barber-Plentie which offers a vision of a fat utopia where larger bodies are accepted and revered.
  • There are currently roles available at Watershed, Showroom Workstation, Berwick Film Festival, BFI, Alchemy Film and Arts, Dogwoof, and more.
  • The Glasgow Film Festival is live and running online until 7 March. This year’s festival features Welcome To, a programme of films and events with a focus on Black Scottish films, filmmakers and history.
  • The UK Asian Film Festival are running a Young Curators Lab in March to give people aged 18-25 the opportunity to gain insight into curating film festivals.
  • On 29 March, Nottingham-based charity Equation are holding an event with Wellington Films’ Rachel Robey and Bechdel Test Fest’s Corinna Antrobus to discuss women in film and issues of gender equality.
  • The UK’s largest festival dedicated to Japanese cinema, the Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme, is going online this year, offering screenings to audiences across the UK for free.
  • The BFI FAN Young Consultants have launched a monthly film newsletter called No Content Available. Check out the first edition to read about their Valentine’s Day picks and subscribe if you’d like to see more.
  • The 20th edition of the Wales One World Film Festival is running from 11-21 March. This year’s festival is running online and tickets are free, but limited.
  • The Doc Society and Netflix have launched a new disability and inclusion toolkit, a 62-page document that includes practical advice to make changes across film development, production, distribution and exhibition.
  • On Thursday 25 March, the Rothermere American Institute are holding a discussion with programmers Sarah-Tai Black and Grace Barber-Plentie about Cheryl Dunye’s The Watermelon Woman.

Good reads/watches/listens

Image: First Cow, dir. Kelly Reichardt (MUBI)

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