The British Film Institute‘s Film Fund is the largest public film fund in the UK. Per annum, it invests over £27M ($46.2M) into development, production, international sales and distribution and supports about 30 new films each year. Now, it’s getting serious about diversity and will require movies meet a list of standards before doling out any cash. In order to ensure that titles receiving funding “reflect and represent the diversity of the UK”, a “three ticks” approach is being set up. Beginning September 1, all BFI Film Fund-supported projects must demonstrate “commitment to encouraging diverse representation across their workforces and in the portrayal of under-represented stories and groups on screen.” The org says it’s concerned with diversity in relation to ethnicity, disability, gender, sexual orientation and socio-economic status. Applicants will have to be able to put a check mark next to at least one criterion in a minimum of two areas out of on-screen diversity, off-screen diversity and creating opportunities and promoting social mobility. A diversity expert is bring brought in to help implement the guidelines.
Recent BFI Film Fund-backed productions telling diverse stories include Amma Asante’s Belle; Gone Too Far from director Destiny Ekaragha and writer Bola Agbaje; and Pride, the gay-themed Directors’ Fortnight closer from helmer Matthew Warchus and writer Stephen Beresford.