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Return To Work Scheme Successfully Places 10 Returners in Post Production and VFX Sector

Date posted: 03.05.2019

Ten parents and carers have successfully completed paid placements within the Post Production and VFX sector as part of ScreenSkills Return To Work Scheme in association with Film London. The 2018/2019 scheme concluded with a networking lunch in partnership with UK Screen Alliance to celebrate the returners’ achievements.

After all completing a paid placement, many of the returners have now been offered extended placements or full-time positions, contributing toward wider skills and diversity within the specialised sector.

ScreenSkills Return To Work Scheme in association with Film London supports parents and carers who have taken a career break and are keen to come back to work in the Post Production and VFX sector for high-end TV, providing them with training workshops, a specialised mentor and a paid company placement.

The most recent scheme concluded with a networking lunch attended by participating returners, mentors and companies, as well as wider Post and VFX companies.

Adrian Wootton, Chief Executive of Film London and the British Film Commission, said:

“With more and more opportunities becoming available within the screen industries, the Return To Work Scheme strives to make sure that these opportunities reach those who are looking to return to the industry. Their skills, experience and creativity are vital at a time when High-end TV is booming. These differences in experience enrich the industry and the content we create, and by helping companies cast a wider net when it comes to recruitment we hope to play a part in maintaining our industry’s success.”

ScreenSkills Director of High-end TV Kaye Elliott said:

“The High-end TV Skills Fund wanted to support those wishing to return after a career break because their experience is too valuable to lose. The pace of technological change in VFX and post-production can create particular problems for parents or carers returning to work, so we are pleased to have been able to offer constructive help for them.”

As a nationwide programme, placements were secured in London, Bournemouth and Wales at the following Post Production and VFX companies:

·         Molinare

·         BlueBolt

·         Outpost (Bournemouth)

·         Bait Studio (Wales)

·         Freefolk

·         JellyFish Pictures

Julie Parmenter, Managing Director at Molinare, who has hosted numerous returners said:

With the successful growth of the creative industries, there is a need to attract great talent. There are strong programmes in place to nurture the next generation but this leaves a skills gap in the short term. The Return To Work scheme provides a door to experienced and talented individuals to return to the industry to fill this gap. By taking on the returners, we have been fortunate to have somebody with the maturity and experience of dealing with people of all levels as well as the talent and drive to make an instant difference to the business.

Peter Rogers, Managing Director at Bait Studio, Cardiff, who participated in the 2018/19 scheme said:

“The Visual Effects industry changes at such a pace that it can be very daunting for someone who has not worked for a while to come back in. The Return to Work scheme with Film London offers parents and carers an invaluable opportunity to reconnect with the industry. We really enjoyed having a returnee in the studio with us and are pleased to have been able to give her the chance to work on live shots again. It was a very simple process for us and the returnee as Film London gave so much support, we’ve love to be involved again in the future.”

With intentions for applying to the scheme ranging from building upon existing experience to improving self-confidence, Ommelyla Gilani, Compositing Returnee at Bait Studio recalled her experience:

"The knowledge I have gained from hands on work and help from the team has been so valuable. It’s given me the opportunity to work with real footage that I would not have had access to or think of recreating for practice, such as some tricky clean up shots.

The placement took into account carers returning to work, something that I didn’t think was possible so would not normally mention when applying for jobs. Film London are such a hands on team that have helped me in every way possible, from providing me with a friendly and compassionate mentor, to setting up Skype meetings when I couldn’t attend a session. I have been connected with top companies which would not have been possible on my own, and I now have a support group of returners who all help each other find work and share opportunities.”

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