Film London is investing in the next generation of cinema goers through two new initiatives: a youth engagement scheme led by Film Hub London, and a training course for film educators funded by Creative Skillset.
Film Hub London has awarded £50,000 to a consortium of organisations, led by Picturehouse Cinemas, to deliver Cinemania, a collaborative programme aiming to increase the engagement of young audiences with a wide variety of film across the capital. Film Hub London, led by Film London, is a partner of the BFI Film Audience Network (BFI FAN), a four-year initiative working to grow audiences for cultural film across the UK.
Activity is planned in 11 London boroughs and comprises of the following 12 cinemas:
- ArtHouse Crouch End
- Cineworld Feltham
- Clapham Picturehouse
- Greenwich Picturehouse
- Hackney Picturehouse
- Lexi Cinema
- Phoenix Cinema
- Stratford Picturehouse
- The Gate Cinema
- Rio Cinema
- The ICA
The consortium will also partner with film education charity Into Film plus organisations including London International Animation Festival. The 8-10 month project will implement a mix of programming and training to engage young people between the ages of 12 and 24 with a particular focus on targeting marginalised groups who do not regularly visit the cinema.
The scheme was developed as a response to the challenges exhibitors face in engaging young people with the capital’s diverse offering of cinema, a key issue highlighted by consultation with the exhibition sector during Film London’s development of Film Hub London.
Clare Binns, director of programming & acquisitions at Picturehouse Cinemas said “Picturehouse cinemas always strive to bring an exciting, challenging and varied programme of films to our audiences and put local communities at the heart of what we do. Engaging young audiences and giving them the opportunity to develop their cinematic experiences is a crucial part of this.”
Cultivate: Inspiring Future Audiences, led by Film London with funding from Creative Skillset, is the third edition of the UK’s only training course dedicated to developing the skills of film education professionals working in exhibition. Applications are now open with a deadline of 31 October 2014.
The London-based course, facilitated by film education consultant Corinna Downing, will run from 14- 16 January 2015 and will focus on developing the skills of film exhibitors at all stages of their career. Participants will benefit from the expertise of industry practitioners, who will present case studies, run practical sessions and give bespoke guidance tailored to reflect the attendees’ needs.
Bursaries to help cover some of the course fees, travel and accommodation will be available to participants thanks to support from the BFI Film Audience Network.
Rebecca Davies, film partnership manager at Creative Skillset, said “The introduction of Cultivate succeeded in filling a gap in training provision for film exhibitors who wanted to reach out to young people and make a real difference to their film education provision for our audiences of the future. This is our third year of support and we have seen a fantastic array of inspired projects and collaborations spring up across venues as a result of this programme.”
Film Hub London, managed by Film London, is a four-year project investing £800,000 lottery funding as part of the BFI Film Audience Network. Expanding film culture in London with a particular focus on underserved audiences in the outer boroughs, Film Hub London has a collaborative membership of over 150 commercial and independent cinemas, film clubs, pop-up venues and community groups.
Adrian Wootton, chief executive of Film London and the British Film Commissio, added : “With these initiatives, Film London and Film Hub London’s ambition is to lay the groundwork for a new generation of engaged, inquisitive and enlightened film audiences. This activity is an integral part of our ongoing commitment to nurturing a thriving film culture in the capital, as young people are vital to an effective and sustainable audience development strategy.”