Creative BC News

Support for emerging, diverse B.C. filmmakers

Feb 25, 2021 | News

"The creative sector has helped to ease the pain for so many throughout the pandemic," said Melanie Mark, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport. "We all owe a great deal of thanks to the filmmakers and storytellers that help define our identity, capture our imagination and create change. Our government is proud to be providing funding to support the creative sector in producing local content and jobs right here in B.C."
The Province's domestic motion picture fund, Reel Focus BC, is launching its first development program with $200,000 targeted to emerging and equity seeking B.C. filmmakers. Creators can get a grant of up to $10,000 to cover the cost of bringing together a development team to do research, develop a concept or write a script. The grants are available for a wide range of content including feature films, television shows, series, documentaries and animated content.
The following groups are eligible:
  • Emerging filmmakers in B.C.
  • Equity-seeking filmmakers in B.C. (emerging or established)
The goal of this program is to support equity and diversity in B.C.’s domestic motion picture sector by increasing access to funding for under-represented filmmakers. It is also focused on fostering new talent and growth in the domestic motion picture industry by helping new filmmakers get their projects off the ground. 
Filmmakers do not need to secure an investor or broadcaster in order to apply, which can be a significant hurdle for many producers in B.C. By removing this barrier, the program increases opportunity and access for new and diverse producers, allowing them to focus on creating new projects.
Administered by Creative BC, this is the first program launched under the B.C. government’s $2-million investment in the domestic motion picture industry. This investment supports good-paying jobs in communities and will create resilience in B.C.’s domestic motion picture industry.
Bob D’Eith, Parliamentary Secretary for Arts and Film –
“Local producers support good-paying jobs in our communities throughout the province. We’re proud to help people who might not have otherwise had the opportunity to share their stories and support our domestic industry in becoming more diverse and resilient.”
Prem Gill, CEO, Creative BC –
“We consulted with many people in the sector on what they needed to support and grow our domestic industry. Helping emerging and equity-seeking producers at the development stage was a high priority, both to strengthen B.C.’s talent pipeline and expand the perspectives brought to screen.”
Tracey Friesen, managing vice-president of the Canadian Media Producers Association – BC Branch –
“This is exciting news for eligible B.C. producers seeking resources and business supports for their next project. The fact they can apply for these funds without a broadcaster attached means a significant barrier to early project development has been removed. These companies will be more competitive when pitching next level financing and funding sources.”
Shabnam Rezaei, co-founder and president, Big Bad Boo Studios –
“It’s great to see the B.C. government giving local producers like us support at the start of a project. Having provincial backing makes it easier to get started and attract other investors. And I really appreciate that they are focusing on diversifying our industry. We’ve definitely found it makes our work resonate with a broader audience.”
Quick Facts:
More than 70,000 people work in B.C.’s domestic motion picture industry.
The domestic motion picture industry includes B.C. producers and production companies that create feature films, television series, documentaries and animation.
Learn more
Ministry of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport
Government Communications and Public Engagement
250 208-4309