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The National Lottery’s 25th birthday

Date posted: 12.11.2019

Next week marks the 25th anniversary of the first draw of The National Lottery. Since 1994, and thanks to National Lottery players, an incredible £40 billion has been raised for good causes across the UK including film and heritage.

From supporting emerging filmmakers to make their first short film to preserving and promoting London's lost archive footage and inspiring new young diverse audiences to engage with cinema, Film London is a proud recipient of National Lottery funding, through the BFI.

The 25th birthday is a moment to celebrate the extraordinary impact The National Lottery has had on the UK, and to say thank you to National Lottery players for contributing around £30 million to good causes every week.

Here are just some of the Film London projects made possible thanks to The National Lottery:

Film Exhibition  

Film Hub London is a collaborative network for everyone who shows films in the capital. From independent cinemas and multiplexes through to pop-ups and local film clubs, we bring together film exhibitors from across the city to learn from and support each other.

We work with more than 175 cinemas, community groups and festivals to get Londoner's watching films and 75,000 people attended a Film Hub London event last year.

London's Screen Archives

London's Screen Archives (LSA) is a unique network of over 70 organisations with a shared vision - to preserve and share London's history on film.

The network is managed by Film London and encompasses organisations that hold heritage film collections across London, including local and borough archives, museums, galleries, public sector bodies, community groups, and national charities. We work with our members to digitise their films and ensure the long-term sustainability of their moving image collections, as well as offering opportunities for public engagement through screenings and events, volunteering programmes, training and education.

Film London Microwave

Our flagship feature film scheme serves to inspire and develop the capital's best new filmmakers, empowering them to make bold, compelling features that will surprise and inspire global audiences. The scheme was the first low budget feature program in Europe and has been responsible for discovering and developing some of the UK's most exciting talent.

The Microwave scheme commissioned six films in its most recent slate, all of which have now completed production. Mari was the first film to launch from the second slate and premiered at the BFI London Film Festival in October 2018 before a UK theatrical run with Verve Pictures.  Production has now wrapped on Marley Morrison's feature debut Sweetheart, the final title from the latest slate. Other titles included Lucy Brydon's Body Of Water, presented to the market at Rome Film Festival last month, and Rene Pannevis' Looted, which is set to receive its world premiere in the First Feature Competition at Tallinn Black Nights.

Emerging Talent

Film London also delivers BFI NETWORK support and funding for new and emerging filmmakers across the Greater London area as part of Film Hub London. Find out more about the BFI NETWORK Short Film Fund and Early Development Fund here.

Young Audiences

Developing young audiences for independent British and international film plays a key role in the BFI's 2022 strategy and the future of the British film industry and Film Hub London is proud to be leading the Young Audiences strategy on behalf of the BFI Film Audience Network (FAN).

The National Lottery has made more than 5,500 millionaires but its primary purpose is giving to good causes - over 565,000 individual grants have been awarded across the UK, that's the equivalent of  200 projects in every UK postcode district.

Happy Birthday from Film London!

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