Creative England Film

Creative England Film provides comprehensive support to filmmakers from across England.

Whether you are a writer, director or producer looking to progress to first feature, an established producer looking for production finance or an ambitious film business looking to grow and innovate, Creative England Film can provide the necessary funding and bespoke support.

Everything we do is motivated by a desire to support the brightest and best, whatever their background, experience or stage of development.

Browse the tabs above where you can download the relevant guidelines as well as access our online application/submissions system. For general enquires, you can also email us at

Film offer details

Talent Centres – The Creative England Talent Centres are a key part of the BFI UK-wide NET.WORK, offering bespoke support for the next generation of new and emerging film directors, writers and producers. We fund short film production and feature film development in order to propel filmmaking talent towards their first feature.

Production Funding - Creative England manages two production investment funds: the Creative England Production Fund and the West Midlands Production Fund. The Creative England Production Fund can invest between £50,000 to £150,000 in films budgeted below £1.5m, ideally made by regional filmmakers and filmed in the regions. And the West Midlands Production Fund can invest between £100,000 to £500,000 of matched commercial equity in both films and TV – the aim being to encourage production in, and bring filmmakers to, the West Midlands region.

iFeatures – Low budget feature film development and production initiative aimed at supporting emerging talent and stories in the English regions outside of London. The initiative is funded by Creative England, BBC Films and BFI Film fund with the training element funded by Creative Skillset. Three films will be made on budgets of £350,000 each at the end of a year-long development process.

Enterprise – Film Enterprise works with film related businesses based out of London.  It offers made to measure programmes of support and funding to help companies improve their growth and sustainability.

Partnerships – Innovations and Partnerships works with companies who have innovative ideas for helping the film sector grow and develop outside London. It supports original projects with strong partnerships and a commitment to cross-sector collaboration.

Follow Creative England Film on Twitter: @CEFilm


Over the past 18 months, Creative England has been active in film development and production, backing a diverse range of talented individuals at every stage of their filmmaking careers.

Some highlights include:

  • Invested in films as varied as the UK box office family hit Nativity 2 and the Edinburgh International Film Festival award-winning One Mile Away through our West Midlands Production Fund
  • Supported over 50 first-time and second-time feature filmmakers with development funding including new projects from Andrew Haigh (Weekend) and Nick Whitfield (Skeletons) as well as debuts from successful shorts directors such as Esther May Campbell, Deborah Haywood and Karni & Saul; and from cross-over talent such as Cosmo Jarvis and Michael Symmons Roberts.
  • Completed the first three films through our groundbreaking iFeatures partnership with BBC Films and BFI Film Fund, with another three currently in production;
  • Delivered professional development programmes such as Elevator and iFeatures to help emerging talent move into features, and partnered on a wider range of skills, market readiness and mentoring initiatives including Think Shoot Distribute, Talent Lab and Audience on Demand.


We’ve recently entered into a new four-year partnership with the BFI and have agreed a Lottery funding plan that focuses on talent development, production, business growth and inward investment, with distinct but linked offers for each.  We’ve also secured further European funding to extend our West Midlands Production Fund as well as Regional Growth Funds from the UK Government to support enterprise and innovation.

As a result, we can now offer a greatly enhanced portfolio of support to filmmakers and film businesses from across England, particularly to those out of London. We also expanded our team in order ensure that we can offer the highest quality advice, contacts and advocacy to those that we invest in.

Skip to iShorts

Talent Centres

Creative England has partnered with the BFI to establish two Talent Centres in Brighton and Sheffield

These are part of the BFI NET.WORK.

Their main aims are to:

  • Discover, nurture and progress the next generation of talent, focusing on creative excellence, original voices and equality of opportunity
  • Provide a clear ladder of progression from shorts to first feature films
  • Deliver funding and other support for feature film development, shorts and pilots

We will support the development of live action, fictional feature film projects of all genres which may include a contribution towards research, writer’s fees, script editing, budget/schedule, casting, recce and pilot

We will also support the production of shorts from writer/directors and directors who have written or have a formal attachment to a feature at first draft or beyond.

The centres are staffed by a highly experienced senior film executive and a development executive, responsible for the delivery of funding and other support. In total, the centres have around £1.2m on offer for England’s best new and emerging filmmaking talent.

While the centres are located in Sheffield and Brighton there is no element of postcode lottery for any of the projects they support. The teams scout talent from all over England, regularly spending time in other key cities north, south, east and west.

Our teams additionally reach out to places where talent already congregates: theatres, writers’ groups and other artistic and cultural institutions. They interact with online networks and platforms, conveying the fantastic storytelling opportunities of film.

All your applications for support are received centrally, reviewed by teams in both centres. We have deliberately recruited people with extensive industry experience and a wide range of tastes so that you and your project have the very best chance of consideration and support.

We will always ensure that successful applicants are matched with the most appropriate team member – someone who understands them and their project – even if it means a Brighton-based filmmaker working with an executive based in Sheffield and vice-versa.

Talent in the other nations should visit the websites of our BFI NET.WORK partners:

Film London is also providing additional support for filmmakers based in the capital.

Creative England Film’s new offer is detailed below:

New Talent

If you have some experience in self-funded short films, in student films, or have written an unproduced screenplay, or produced work that has not yet attracted financial support from within the industry, we offer an entry level shorts initiative, iShorts.


Applications for iShorts have now closed.

iShorts is a fixed call for submissions, financing around 20 films with budgets of £5,000 each for directors and writer/directors based outside Greater London.

Creative England will be launching further New Talent calls in late Spring 2014. Please check the Creative England website and social media channels for the latest news.

iShorts is supported by Creative Skillset’s Film Skills Fund, which is funded by the National Lottery via the BFI, and through the Skills Investment Fund.

Emerging Talent

Our offer to emerging talent means writers, directors and writer/directors:

  • who have already acquired some professional experience
  • whose work has already attracted positive industry and/or public attention
  • who have not yet made a feature film that has attracted theatrical distribution

Eligible applicants will be able to apply for funding and support towards:

Feature Film Development

We will support the development of live action, fictional feature film projects of all genres.

This may include a contribution towards option costs, research, writer’s fees, script editing, producer’s fees/overhead, director’s services, legal, budget/schedule, casting, recce and other costs as may be agreed.

We can also support the production of teasers and pilots where appropriate.

Short Film Production

We will support the production of shorts from writer/directors and directors who have written or have a formal attachment to a feature film that is at first draft or beyond.

Proposed short film projects must:

  • have been developed to first draft or beyond
  • have a duration of 10 to 30 minutes
  • be achievable within a budget range of £10,000 to £50,000
  • be a creatively and professionally relevant calling card for a first feature

Download the Emerging Talent guidelines

Download the Emerging Talent FAQs

Apply to the Emerging Talent offer online

Brighton Talent Centre Programme

As part of the BFI NET.WORK, Creative England’s Brighton Talent Centre is launching its programme of activities designed to equip emerging filmmakers from across England to stand a better chance of getting their first feature made and provide them with more networking and showcasing opportunities within their local and national film communities.

First, hosted by Celine Haddad (Senior Film Executive – Talent Development), a module of six monthly events will take place at the Lighthouse in  Brighton, covering the feature filmmaking process from development through to production and distribution.

A mix of talks, panels and case studies will feature key industry players, including:  Lizzie Francke (BFI), Eva Yates (Film4), Richard Holmes (Creative England), Mary Burke (Warp), Fiona Neilson (Mint Pictures), Christopher Granier-Deferre (Poisson Rouge Pictures and iFeatures), Kate Leys (one of the UK’s leading script editors), Destiny Ekaragha and Bola Agbaje (Director and Writer, Gone Too Far), Hong Khaou (Writer/Director, Lilting), David Shear (Shear Entertainment) and many more to be announced at a later date.

The modules are aimed at producers, writers, and directors from across the country who have yet to make a film that has been theatrically released and distributed in the UK. Participants will leave the programme with a clear insight into the world of first-time feature making, strong peer to peer connections and new industry contacts.

There will be 30 places available and all sessions are free. However selected participants are expected to fully commit to the module, and must attend at least four out of the five initial sessions in order to secure their place for the final event, which includes one-on-one surgeries with carefully selected commissioning executives, producers and heads of development.

Read the full modules schedule here

A series of networking evenings and talent showcases will also be organised later in the year to promote the work of the filmmakers supported at all levels by Creative England through its comprehensive Film offer. Please subscribe to our newsletter or follow @CEFilm for further updates on those events.

Led by Paul Ashton (Senior Film Executive – Talent Development), the Sheffield Talent Centre will launch its own programme in the next coming months, with other national programmes taking place in the future in England’s key cities.

In order to secure a place on the Brighton module, please apply by sending your CV and a cover letter explaining why you would like to take part to:

Applications are open until 28 March at 5pm. Places will be confirmed by 4 April. The first session is on 23 April (see schedule for full details).

Please note that applicants have to be over 18 and out of full time education in order to apply). We only have 30 places available for this module and expect demand to be high.

Lighthouse logo


. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The Talent Centres team is led by Paul Ashton and Céline Haddad.


Production Funding

Nativity 2 posterCreative England now offers two strands of production funding.

The Creative England Production Fund is targeted at feature films with budgets of under £1.5 million from up-coming talent or from established directors looking to experiment with innovative approaches. We’re particularly interested in projects from regionally-based filmmakers or which have a strong regional voice.

We are looking to support around three to five features per annum over the next four years, with production awards of up to £150,000 per project.

Download the Creative England Production Fund guidelines

Submit an Expression of Interest to the Creative England Production Fund

Our relaunched West Midlands Production Fund invests in the production of feature films and high-end TV drama from companies based in the West Midlands as well as from producers looking to establish a base and film in the region.

The Fund has previously supported projects as diverse as the Nativity films, the documentary One Mile Away (Best British Feature, Edinburgh International Film Festival 2012) and high rating TV series Line of Duty and Dancing on the Edge.

We’re planning to support between four and five productions over the next 18 months, with investments of up to £500,000 per project.

Download the West Midlands Production Fund guidelines

Submit an Expression of Interest to the West Midlands Production Fund

Our production funding offer is led by Richard Holmes

film page logos

iFeatures microbudget filmmakingCreative England supports the development of 16 projects and the production of three micro budget films of £350,000.

iFeatures, now in its third iteration in 2014, will develop a brand new slate of 16 projects from the UK’s most promising filmmaking teams. This increasingly popular initiative will introduce some of the UK’s most exciting new writers, directors and producers to a wide range of industry professionals, developing their scripts, and their connections. In early 2015, three of the projects will be greenlit, each with a budget of £350,000.

The original iFeatures films are now all complete. Encompassing a wide range of genres and audiences, all three are represented by Content Film for UK and International sales.

Creative England announced that the three micro budget films to be greenlit through iFeatures2 were Spaceship from writer/director Alex Taylor, currently in development; and The Goob from writer/director Guy Myhill, and Martin Radich’s Norfolk, both of which are in post-production.

Applications for the current iteration of iFeatures opened on 27 January and close on 14 March 2014. For further details please visit the iFeatures website

Filmmakers can visit the iF on Film page on the iFeatures website.

Follow iFeatures on Twitter and Facebook.

Film Enterprise

Creative England’s Film Enterprise fund will invest £2m over four years to improve the growth and sustainability of film-related businesses in England outside of Greater London.

We will work with companies on an individual basis and design made-to-measure programmes of business support and funding to help entrepreneurs unlock new opportunities, develop creative strategies, refine their business models and attract increased levels of corporate finance.  We are also looking to encourage new business alliances and joint ventures and to help companies enhance their capacity for international trade.

We welcome applications from companies that are not currently active in film but who wish to expand their business model into this area and can demonstrate that they have the skills and capability to do so, primarily by evidencing a strong track record in content creation.

What does Film Enterprise offer?

Film Enterprise has a range of options at its disposal and our aim is to work with film companies and the people who run them to develop a plan for funding and support that is most appropriate to the needs and aspirations of the individual business. We will support companies to develop their creative and business strategies, diversify revenue streams and take advantage of emerging markets.  We can offer recoupable grant, debt and equity funding alongside “money+” options such as business planning, skills development, leadership training, mentoring and the attachment of non-exec directors.  However, this list is by no means exhaustive and our principle is that the offer is bespoke rather than prescriptive.

Please note that Film Enterprise does not offer standalone single project or slate funding. We will however consider proposals that include these as part of an overall business growth plan.

Film Enterprise Guidelines

Click here for the Expression of Interest

Film Enterprise is supported by the BFI and National Lottery

BFI National Lottery

Strategic Partnerships Fund

Creative England is looking for companies who have new and innovative ideas for ways to help the film sector to grow and develop outside London. It is offering funding of between £10,000 and £50,000 per project.

The Strategic Partnerships Fund (£250,000 pa) is a unique opportunity to work with Creative England on original projects related to the film industry.

These could support a wide range of areas from development, production and distribution to business growth, innovation, and inward investment.

With the increasing crossover between disciplines, we are also looking for projects that demonstrate a commitment to cross-sector collaboration and to the use of new technologies and platforms.

Download the Strategic Partnerships Fund FAQs

Download the Strategic Partnerships Fund guidelines

Submit an Expression of Interest

BFI Lottery on black

Coming soon…..

Meet the team

Chris Moll, Head of Film
Chris has worked as senior film executive for the past ten years, spearheading development, production and business investment for a variety of regional and national screen organisations. As an independent producer with Aardman Animations, he produced the Oscar-winning The Wrong Trousers. A three-time BAFTA nominee, his productions have also garnered the Annecy Grand Prix, D&AD pencil, Cannes Lion, and a Clio.

Talent Centres

Céline Haddad, Senior Film Executive – Brighton Talent Centre
Céline has over 15 years of experience working in the film industry in France, the US and the UK. She has worked for a wide variety of companies including ICM, Pathé Pictures and Passion Pictures. She has overseen the delivery of several training and mentoring initiatives including the Writing Training Scheme and Second Picture Syndrome.

Paul Ashton, Senior Film Executive – Sheffield Talent Centre
At BBC Writers Room Paul worked with drama and comedy scriptwriters across film, TV and radio. As well as championing new writing talent and diversity across the BBC, Paul was also closely involved in the development and production of the recent Oscar and BAFTA nominated shorts Wish 143 and Turning. Previously, he freelanced finding and developing talent, assessing projects and producing new work.

Peter Parker, Development Executive – Brighton Talent Centre
Peter’s film credits include Hammer’s The Woman In Black and the BAFTA-nominated Film London Microwave feature Shifty. He has been a freelance script reader for the likes of BBC Films, Celador, Focus Features and Pathe; worked for film companies including Heyday Films, TWC and Exclusive Media; and consulted for UK film financier Cascade Pictures.

Jess Loveland, Development Executive – Sheffield Talent Centre
Jess has worked as a freelance script reader and editor with numerous production companies, theatres, screen agencies and competitions, from the BBC to Kaos Films. In 2010 she established online script editing consultancy, Script Monkey, offering professional support to promising new writers and filmmakers.

Alice Ramsey

Alice Ramsey, Coordinator – Talent Centres
Alice is the Coordinator for our Brighton and Sheffield Talent Centres. Prior to joining Creative England, Alice worked at Bankside Films for three years as Sales & Acquisitions Coordinator. She worked on films by BAFTA Award winners Michael Winterbottom, Amma Asante and David Mackenzie, and attended major markets and festivals worldwide.

To speak to the Talent Centre team, call 0114 2866 388


Production Funding

RichardRichard Holmes, Senior Film Executive – Production
Richard has a string of successful credits to his name including Eden Lake, Shooting Fish (which he co-wrote) and the US/UK hit Waking NedJadoo, his second film with Amit Gupta, was closing night film in its section at the Berlin and San Sebastian film festivals.  He has also lectured at the NFTS and European Film College and served as Vice-Chairman for Film at PACT.

Film Enterprise

Caroline Cooper CharlesSenior Executive - Business Growth
As executive producer, Caroline’s credits include Andrea Arnold’s Oscar-winning Wasp and Xiaolu Guo’s She, A Chinese, winner of the Golden Leopard at Locarno Film Festival 2009. In addition to her work with emerging writing and directing talent at her production company, Universal Spirits, she was responsible for a diverse slate of low-budget feature films at Warp X, including HushAll Tomorrow’s Parties and Bunny and the Bull.

Haley Mellor, Film Enterprise and Production Coordinator
Haley oversees the organisational, administrative and communication needs of the Film team’s business growth and production investment initiatives including managing application submissions and procedures and being the first point of contact for all enquiries.


Christopher circleChristopher Granier-Deferre, Executive Producer, iFeatures
Christopher has more than 20 years’ experience working in film, with credits on a wide range of productions from blockbuster. The first decade he spent learning his craft on set; the second running Poisson Rouge Pictures, his own Anglo-French production company. Christopher was nominated for a BIFA in 2009 for The Hide and in 2011 for A Thousand Kisses Deep.

Tristan Goligher, Executive Producer, iFeatures
Tristan produced Andrew Haigh’s Weekend, which premiered at SXSW 2011 winning the Emerging Visions Audience Award. Weekend has won numerous awards including Best Achievement in Production at the BIFAs 2011. In 2012 he co-produced Costa Gavras’ Le Capital, which premiered at TIFF 2012. His first producer credit was on BAFTA-nominated director Martin Radich’s debut feature film Crack Willow.

Kate O’Hara, Project ManageriFeatures
Kate takes overall responsibility for the organisational and administrative needs of iFeatures, including managing the submission, development and production process and being the first point of call for participants. Kate has exec produced short films on new talent schemes, as well as script editing with writers and coordinating national programmes such as the UK Film Council’s Directors Lab at EIFF.


Lisa HoweLisa Howe, Senior Skills Manager
Lisa leads on the shaping and delivery of our skills development programmes, ensuring that the talent and businesses we support are equipped with the skills and knowledge they need to get ahead. She also manages relationships with key skills partners. A visual arts and digital media producer for 20 years, Lisa held senior roles in renowned UK creative agencies.

For general enquiries, contact: