Cinema Incentive Scheme 2021

The Cinema Incentive Scheme is back, as cinemas prepare to reopen their doors in 2021.

Find out whether you qualify for this points-based scheme that rewards part-time and full-time cinemas for screening more British, independent and specialised films. New this year, the threshold for part-time cinemas has been reduced to a minimum of 70 screenings.

The scheme aims to encourage member venues to take more risks within their annual programme, to increase opportunities for diverse audiences to experience a broader range of cinema beyond the mainstream and to develop the UK market for a wider range of film.  

Image c/o Plaza Cinema
It supports and encourages more risk taking in programming, particularly for smaller venues who are under enormous pressure to cut back on riskier titles to make way for more 'popular' films. It could really change the landscape of programming... Plymouth Arts Centre

What is it?

The scheme offers an incentive to encourage members to increase the proportion of British independent and international titles within their annual programme. 

In response to the COVID-19 context, we have adapted this scheme in 2021 to provide an award upfront for venues that can demonstrate their eligibility for the scheme. We will base eligibility on assessment of screening figures from 2019. 

We are offering a scaled upfront award between £500 – £2,000 towards programming and audience development costs for venues that can demonstrate a commitment to cultural film programming. 

All venues that have previously participated in the scheme will be offered this upfront award automatically.  

Venues that are new to the scheme are asked to submit screening figures for 2019 (1/1/2019 – 31/12/2019) by Mon 6th September 2021.

Who is it for?

All venues within the Film Hub South West membership that present more than *100 public screenings a year are invited to apply for the Cinema Incentive Scheme. (*based on 2019 figures.) 

Eligibility & Incentive for Full Time Venues

A sliding award is offered to support full-time venues (showing a minimum of 300 screenings per year*) that demonstrate a commitment to screening British independent or international (specialised) films as part of their annual programme, as follows: 

  • Where  50% or more of the annual programme is specialised a fixed offer of £2,000 will be awarded 
  • If  45% – 49% of the annual programme is specialised a fixed offer of  £1000 will be awarded 
  • If  40% – 44% of the annual programme is specialised a fixed offer of  £500 will be awarded 

Full-time venues screening less than 40% specialised films are not eligible for an award. 

*based on 2019 figures. 

Eligibility & Incentive for Part Time Venues

A sliding award is offered to support part-time venues (offering a minimum of 70 screenings per year*)  that demonstrate a commitment to screening British independent or international (specialised) films as part of their annual programme, as follows: 

  • Where  60% or more of the annual programme is specialised a fixed offer of  £2,000 will be awarded 
  • If  55% – 59%  of the annual programme is specialised a fixed offer of  £1,000 will be awarded 
  • If  50% – 54%  of the annual programme is specialised a fixed offer of £500 will be awarded 

Part-time venues screening less than 50% specialised films are not eligible for an award. 

*based on 2019 figures. 

Parasite (2019) 

Rocks (2020)

How does it work?

Ordinarily, eligibility for this scheme is assessed based on the previous year’s annual screening figures. However, due to the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, in 2021, we will base eligibility on 2019 screening figures and the percentage of British independent and international screenings. 

 

At the point of initial assessment, the number of screenings of British independent and international cinema for each applying venue will form that venue’s baseline. 

In line with BFI priorities, bonus points will be awarded for: 

  • Increasing the number of British independent and International cinema titles screened compared to the previous data set. Figures will be calculated on a proportional basis depending on when venues are able to reopen in 2021. Any increase in the number of British independent and international screenings for the same time period will earn 1 point  
  • Screening  FAN supported Titles: 1 point will be earned for each screening 
  • Screening  titles beyond the mainstream that are targeted towards the 16 – 30 age group: 1 point for each screening 
  • Accessible screenings of British independent and international (specialised) titles (such as Audio Described / Descriptive Subtitled or relaxed screenings) – 1 point for each screening 

 

The level of bonus each participating venue will receive will be calculated based on 2021 screening figures, (1st January 2021, or date from which screenings commence in 2021 – 31st December 2021) to be submitted to the Film Hub by 7th  February 2022. 

 

How Bonus Awards are calculated: 

 The size of the bonus pot depends on the number of participating venues. We anticipate that after fixed awards are paid out, the bonus pot will be c. £20,000. 

  • The total bonus pot available will be divided by the total number of points earned by participating venues to ascertain the value of each point 
  • Funding will be allocated to each venue according to the total value of their earned points. 

Please note there will be a cap of 20% of the available bonus pot for any one venue, therefore a maximum potential bonus award of £4,000. 

How Do I Apply? 

Please download this spreadsheet ansend it back to Neil Ramjee at filmhub@watershed.co.uk with your 2019 screening figures by Mon 6 September 2021, 5pm. Please ensure you have included film titles, number of screenings and admission numbers for each and where possible complete the other columns. 

 

Please include your venue name and CIS 2021 application in the subject of your email. 

 

If you have any questions before applying, do get in touch with Neil to arrange a conversation, he is more than happy to talk through the scheme and any questions you may have.
Absolutely fantastic. Just what cinema in general needs. With cinemas being financially freer to show a more diverse variety of film there is more opportunity to encourage cinema audiences in general to broaden their viewing Gloucester Guildhall

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