Training Courses

Cultural Cinema Exhibition 2011

23/05/2011 - 27/05/2011

BFI Southbank, London

“The ICO Cultural Cinema Exhibition course was like a beacon of light … Since then, I’ve become Programmer at City Screen and the rest is history.”
Madeleine Mullett, Programmer, City Screen

“My CV jumped to the top of the pile at Curzon Cinemas because I did the course. It’s recognised by people in the industry – it’s a standard and a brand that the industry trusts.” Michael Pierce, Marketing and Publicity Executive, Curzon Cinemas

This internationally acclaimed course returns in its twelfth year, offering a unique opportunity for people working in the field of cultural cinema exhibition to enhance their skills, develop their knowledge and increase their understanding of the business of film programming.

Who is the course for?

  • Programming, marketing, education and operational staff of cinemas, film festivals and cross arts venues
  • Film society organisers
  • Freelance programmers
  • Support agency staff
  • Local authority arts officers working with cinemas
  • Distributors wanting to gain a better understanding of the exhibition sector.

Participants should be living and working in the UK and ideally have at least three years’ work experience.


23/05/2011 - 27/05/2011


£375 + VAT = £450. Bursaries will be available towards fees and childcare costs.


BFI Southbank

What does the course cover?

  • Introduction to distribution and exhibition: how films reach the screen
  • Researching films, clearing rights and negotiating terms
  • Programming strategies for independent cinemas, film festivals, arts venues, film societies and alternative venues
  • Broadening audiences: reaching children, young people, disabled and culturally diverse audiences
  • Marketing and PR for specialised film
  • Technical aspects of film formats
  • Programming archive films, shorts and artists’ moving image.

The course provides practical skills, knowledge and inspiration that can be put to immediate use when participants return to work.

How is the course taught?

This is an intensive, one week course comprising talks from a wide range of film industry experts, practical exercises, tutorials and networking. Participants also undertake a project in groups, presenting a programming plan on the final day incorporating everything they’ve learnt on the course.

In 2011 the course will run intensively over one week, with some compulsory evening events. In previous years the course has been two weeks long, but we hope that the condensed version will make it easier for participants to afford the fees and to take the time off work.

Will the course help my career?

Graduates of this course say that the course developed their skills, improved their confidence, raised their ambitions, provided an insight into a wide range of careers in the industry, and widened their network. Participants have gone on to fill key posts in the industry at organisations including the Barbican, the BFI London Film Festival, City Screen, Creative Scotland, Curzon Cinemas, Northern Lights Film Festival, Soda Pictures and the UK Film Council.

How much does it cost?

£375 + VAT = £450*.

If you or your employer cannot cover the fees, you may be eligible for bursary support from the ICO. Please see the bursary guidelines for details.

* Please note that these rates are only available to applicants from the UK who can demonstrate professional experience in the film industry (this can be paid or voluntary and not necessarily continuous). This is a requirement of Skillset’s Continuing Professional Development scheme which is supporting the course. If you do not have any film industry experience but would like to undertake the course for personal or professional reasons, the non-subsidised rate is £1861 + VAT = £2233.20. If you are from outside of the UK, please get in touch.

How to apply

This course is now over.

Travel and accommodation

BFI Southbank is under Waterloo Bridge, between the National Theatre and Royal Festival Hall – Map of the area. For London tubes and buses, use Transport for London’s Journey Planner.


We have an access fund for this course so we can contribute to the costs of any additional requirements you may have (eg. alternate print formats, BSL signers…). Please get in touch with us to discuss your needs at least eight weeks before the course so we can make arrangements.

This scheme has been funded by the Skillset Film Skills Fund as part of ‘A Bigger Future 2’, the UK film skills strategy. The Skillset Film Skills Fund is supported by the National Lottery through the UK Film Council and the film industry through the Skills Investment Fund.

In partnership with the BFI.

Supported by RIFE Investment Fund through the UK Film Council and South West Screen.

Subscribe to our mailing list

What would you like to receive emails about? *
* indicates required