FAN Film Exhibition Fund

Apply to the Film exhibition Fund (FEF) for awards of up to £10,000 per year. 

The BFI Film Audience Network (FAN) reaches out across the UK to ensure people have opportunities to watch and enjoy a diverse range of films and moving image, regardless of geography or circumstance.  

As part of FAN, Watershed, the Film Hub Lead Organisation for the South West has been awarded funding from the BFI National Lottery to support member organisations from across the region to deliver activity to realise this ambition against the priorities set out in the BFI’s Screen Culture 2033 strategy. 

What is the Film Exhibition Fund? 

The Film Exhibition Fund supports the independent film exhibition sector to put on screenings and develop audience development activity that meets the objectives of the BFI’s Screen Culture 2033 strategy.  

The main focus of the Film Exhibition Fund is to support in-person events that bring audiences together for a communal viewing experience, in particular screenings of UK independent and international films.  

Projects which support audiences to experience moving image such as television, digital media and broader screen activity such as XR, VR, and AR will be considered where this represents a valuable opportunity for audience development in line with our priorities. Online activities are not a priority but will be considered where they add value and create meaningful engagement (for example, by removing barriers and improving access for disabled audiences.) 

The activity proposed will need to target specific audience groups and show how the funding is necessary to reach those identified audiences. 

The fund is open to south west based exhibitors that are Film Audience Network member organisations including cinemas, mixed arts centres, community cinemas, film societies, film festivals, touring operators and other film exhibition organisations.   

We particularly welcome and encourage proposals from organisations who are currently underrepresented in the exhibition sector. These include organisations led by Black and global majority people, those that identify as Deaf and disabled people and those that are working class and/or are experiencing economic hardship.  

FAN Membership is free. To become a member of Film Hub South West, take a moment to fill in our application. 

Apply for support of £2,000up to £10,000, covering costs such as programming, marketing, access costs and wraparound events. 

For project funding of below £2000, please see Rolling Audience Pitch Pot 

The fund will support activity taking place from July 2023 – March 2026. 

If your plans include single project activity during April – June 2024, or multi-year projects (during the period of July 2024 until 31 March 2026), please get in touch with the team before applying. filmhub@watershed.co.uk 

Based on last year’s call, this fund is likely to be oversubscribed over its two calls – last year the fund was oversubscribed by 182%, therefore applications which meet the fund’s criteria, as fully as possible, will be considered. 

* Not a member? Find out more and join here. 

Guidelines for Applications  

Please ensure that you read our 2023-26 guidelines in full before making your application. 

If you still have questions, first check out our FAQ on the FAN Film Exhibition Fund here 

Feel free to get in touch with the team to discuss your proposal ahead of applying for any guidance or assistance: filmhub@watershed.co.uk.

We strongly advise new applicants to the fund to get in touch with the team to discuss your proposal before applying. 

  • Screen Culture 2023-24 Film Exhibition Fund Guidelines Download
  • Screen Culture 2023-24 Film Exhibition Fund Guideline Planning Document (plain text) Download

Key dates and Information

Total amount available in the South West: circa £79,000 (2024-25) 

  • Funding range: £2,000 to £10,000 
  • Call opens:  Wed 20 March 2024 
  • Activity window: July 2024 – March 2026 
  • First round Deadline: 5pm Wed 15 May 2023: Decisions will be confirmed by Wed 19 June 2024 
  • Second round Deadline: 5pm Wed 4 Sept 2024: Decisions will be confirmed by beginning of October 2023 
  • Annual projects – July 2024 – March 2025; if your plans include activity during April – June 2024, please get in touch with the team before applying. 
  • Multi-year projects: If you are interested in developing a project that will run over more than one year, see below for more information, and please get in touch with the team before applying: filmhub@watershed.co.uk 

Start by readingthe full guidelinesto ensure your activity fits the eligibility criteria and investment priorities outlined.   

For those who want to see the form offline first for reference only,a Word version can be foundhere.   

You can get help if you need support to apply for funding through the BFI Access Support scheme. You might need support because you are disabled, neurodivergent or another reason.  

If you would like to submit your proposal in another way, get in touch with our Community Manager Neil Ramjee who will be happy to discuss options: filmhub@watershed.co.uk    

To apply, you will need to include the following additional documents:  

  • FAN Film Exhibition Fund Application 2023-24 WORD Download

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