Support for film and TV industry during year-long pandemic

13 April 2021

IT’S more than year since the global COVID-19 pandemic severely impacted the South African local film and television industry.

A number of productions had to be postponed, cancelled or their footprints reduced by the pandemic.

While some were able to resume when restrictions were eased under level 4, some projects had to completely shut down.

This means finding work has been difficult for many.

Thousands of filmmakers and industry value chain workers are feeling the economic effects of the shutdown.

While government has put some relief measures to provide support for the struggling industries, this has not been enough.

Some industries bodies established finance sources to support film and TV projects.

They have also partnered with local and international corporations to set up relief funds for industry workers.

Below we have complied a list of the some of the relief funds and and other opportunities for filmmakers

Annually the National Film and Video Foundation(NFVF) provides an opportunity for South African filmmakers to attend film festivals and markets to showcase their projects.

This year is no different and the NFVF has recently issued a call for applications for funding to attend festivals and and film markets taking place from mid-May to July 2021.

‘The grant is to provide financial support for South African filmmakers/practitioners to attend local and international film festivals, forums to promote their film and television products, share their expertise with peers; and to promote the South African film industry,’ the NFVF says.

Deadline for submissions is Monday, 19 April 2021.

A project of the Screen Sector Support Initiative (SASFED and IPO), the Screen Sector Support Fund had initial contributions from Sony Pictures International, the National Arts Council and the National Film and Video Foundation.

The fund was set up to assist below-the-line industry freelancers struggling as a result of the pandemic-forced shut downs.

Submission of applications closed last week however in an effort to grow the pool of funds, it remains open for donations.

Click here to donate

TikTok recently launched the Rising Voices incubator to upskill black South African creators and drive inclusivity.

Rising Voices aims to train, educate and support 100 Black creators, selected by a committee, on how to use the platform and create high-quality content.

It will also include career-building resources and necessary digital skills training from prominent industry experts.

The project is endorsed by the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF).

The Commercial Producers Association of South Africa Covid-19 Fund raised just over R1 million which was distributed in the form of virtual food vouchers to 562 successful applications.

Some of the donated came from some of the country’s top production companies, illustrating how the industry can band together in time of crisis.

This page will be updated regularly with new information on opportunities for filmmakers