Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board (IFB) has announced a number of new funding initiatives at the Galway Film Fleadh specifically targeted at incentivising female writers, directors and producersin order to directly increase female representation in the Irish film, television and animation industry.

The new funding initiatives are:

Low Budget Film Production & Training Scheme for female talent
In the coming months, BSÉ/IFB will launch a new low budget production programme aimed exclusively at emerging and established female Writers and Directors. Following tailored workshops, mentorship and training, talent will have the opportunity to apply for support to produce a feature film with a budget of up to €400,000 fully funded by BSÉ/IFB and S481.

Enhanced Production Funding for female initiated and driven feature films
– Increased support of up to €100,000 (subject to meeting BSÉ/IFB prescribed criteria) will be made available for projects under BSÉ/IFB’s Fiction: Irish Production funding for feature films that are creatively lead by an Irish female Writer(s), Director(s) or Writer/Director with effect from September 2017.

➢ Across all other BSÉ/IFB funding schemes, including the BSÉ/IFB Short Film schemes, gender parity across all creative roles will be monitored and encouraged within any applications for support.

Development Focus for female initiated feature films

➢  The IFB has recently appointed a new team of project managers who have taken up their positions in the Production & Development team at the IFB. The team is currently reviewing the Screenplay Development scheme for writers, writing teams and writer and director teams, and amendments to the scheme will be announced shortly. As part of the planned amendments to this scheme, all efforts to ensure gender parity across funding awards will occur. In addition, the IFB plans to pilot one round annually available to female applicants only.

➢  The team is also discussing the introduction of a supplemental funding award for feature films originated and written by Irish female writers with effect from September 2017.

➢  In terms of BSÉ/IFB’s other development funding schemes gender parity across all creative roles will be monitored and encouraged within any applications for support.

Establishment of the Gender Equality and Diversity Subcommittee
A new Gender Equality and Diversity Subcommittee will be appointed by the IFB board, who will consult with external bodies, will be introduced with effect from September 2017. The Subcommittee will establish ongoing policies and guidelines in relation to the application process and funding arrangements and will be responsible for their implementation and delivery.

Promotion and dialogue focused on female talent.
BSÉ/IFB will continue to monitor our progress on gender equality and to conduct our dialogue with the relevant stakeholders and partners including RTÉ, the BAI, SPI, Directors Guild, Writers Guild and Animation Ireland. Particular attention will be given over the coming period to dialogue with the major Irish production companies to discuss actions they could take to increase gender equality within the industry.

IFB will introduce a targeted strategy to promote female talent in the sector increasing their visibility, celebrating achievements, supporting their work and promoting gender equality widely to new and existing practitioners as well as the public.

Comprehensive information on each of these Initiatives (the exact details of which are subject to change) will be announced in the coming months and will be made available on the IFB website.