Film London celebrates 2019
Date posted: 23.12.2019
2019 has been another hugely successful year for our screen industries, and a jam-packed year for Film London.
Throughout the year, Film London forged new relationships and strengthened existing ones within the industry. In January, we invited six top Miami Film and TV producers to London to showcase the city's production offer and strengthen industry relationships as part of a city-to-city partnership. Then in March, the Vancouver Economic Commission welcomed a U.K. delegation led by Film London to develop animation trade links and co-production opportunities between the cities. In September, Film London signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Apulia Film Commission and with Fondazione Sardegna Film Commission to recognise and enhance the creative and business links London has with Apulia and Sardinia, and extend and enrich the long-term partnerships with both agencies.
In February, we introduced 'London On Screen and Filming', a monthly news instalment in collaboration with the Greater London Authority to promote what is filming and on our screens in the capital each month. We also conducted various interviews with location professionals to gain behind-the-scenes insight into the logistics of filming.
The London's Screen Archives completed restoring over 100 hours of unseen footage of London from the past 100 years thanks to the time and talents of local volunteers and film archivists. Clips ranged from celebrating the Coronation in Southgate to centre court tennis at Wimbledon 1938 and scenes from the Ilford Carnival. The London's Screen Archives team also held a number of workshops specifically designed for archivists, librarians, curators and anyone working in heritage who wanted to extend their skills into archive film and video. Workshop topics included identification and handling, cataloguing and licensing.
Film London participated in and hosted various events to discuss environmental and social sustainability within the industry, and highlight our various initiatives helping to improve longevity. Film London and Escape Studios, in association with Universities UK, hosted 'Mend the Gap' - an evening of discussion and debate around the current animation training and employment landscape - and in May, attended Universities UK conference on employability and skills. Regarding sustainability, Film London attended the 2019 Sustainable Filming Conference in Malaga, as well as hosting a Green Filmmaking and Cinema event during London Climate Action Week. At FOCUS 2019, Film London exhibited, hosted and participated in a variety of panels across film, TV and games under this year's over-arching theme "Forces of Change - What's next?"
Over the course of the year Film London's Equal Access Network led a variety of programmes, workshops and masterclasses to ensure that the capital's screen industries represent the diversity of the city itself. The Return To Work Scheme successfully placed 10 returners in the Post Production and VFX Sector, and launched its third edition. New programmes also came in the form of Breaking the Glass Ceiling - a new leadership programme to support black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) mid-level professionals in the Film and TV industry - and Getting Into Film and TV for young people not currently in education, employment or training.
Numerous Film London supported productions have been selected and won awards at some of the biggest festivals around the world, and many of our alumni have moved on to make features and develop careers within the moving image industries. Our work supporting and developing the capital's new and emerging talent included the return of Film London Labs. We ran five lab sessions on topics including transitioning to television, the work before the writing and impact and persuasion. In March we launched the inaugural Film London Lodestars, celebrating the bright futures of 25 innovative filmmakers and craftspeople supported by Film London across our schemes.
Film London's Artist Moving Image Network (FLAMIN) also had a busy year. Six FLAMIN Fellowship artists held a 3- week residency in Sardinia, and a new batch of artist filmmakers were selected for both the FLAMIN Productions and Fellowship schemes. Work from the six shortlisted artists for the 2019 Film London Jarman Award toured the UK, concluding with a weekend and continued exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery, London.
The London Games Festival saw 12 days of games including cosplayers lining the streets for The Games Character Parade, over 60 studios meeting with over 60 investors at the Games Finance Market, a varied and insightful set of talks and panels at the Games Culture Summit and a Trafalgar Square takeover.
The 63rd BFI London Film Festival saw the return of our annual Production Finance Market, our support of the Mayor of London's Gala, which screened The Aeronauts, directed by Film London alumnus Tom Harper, and London Calling and FLAMIN showcases. We also attended the likes of Cannes, Berlinale, Sundance, Toronto International Film Festival, Melbourne International Film Festival and Venice Film Festival, hosting a range of events, exhibition stands and participating in panels.
We hosted a selection of industry events including London Screenings, the launch of a new and exclusive IP Event UPstream and Film Hub's Distributor Slate Days. Rounding off the year was Seen on Screen, the UK's leading international screen tourism conference, presented by Film London and VisitBritain at the London Transport Museum. Experts from across Europe met to explore the intersecting worlds of film, television and tourism at the one-day event, held in association with Apulia Film Commission and Puglia Promozione.
These are just some of the highlights from 2019 and they wouldn't be possible without the support of our funders and sponsors. Film London is all about partnership and connections and we want to say a huge thank you to everyone we have worked with over the past year as we look forward to a busy and successful 2020.