ON THE BLOG: Tips for your Slate Funding application

The next deadline for Slate Funding is 20 February 2019. If you're thinking about applying, or currently in the process of putting together your application here are some useful pointers to help with writing your strategies...

Quality of the development strategy

  • it should be clearly explained, with detailed plans set out in a realistic time-frame, particularly in relation to artistic development of the project and rewrites
  • the costs for development should be evaluated realistically 
  • it should identify the needs of the project, and take into account any simultaneous work required, with planned actions cohering with the budget
  • it should also provide insight into the overall mood and stylistic vision of the project

Potential to reach audiences and relevance of the European and international distribution and marketing strategy  

  • consider the universal subject, language and genre of the project - the transnational appeal should be apparent 
  • a co-production financing scheme with established European partners might increase the project's chances for international distribution
  • the distribution strategy should be precisely outlined, identifying funding and distribution partners that confirm the international potential of the project
  • it should foresee different deals for different territories also taking into account varying windows of release
  • it should provide a coherent plan regarding your festival strategy
  • the marketing strategy should identify your core target audience and priority territories in relationship to the character of the film
  • it should demonstrate a firm grasp and knowledge of the unique selling points of your project
  • it should be realistic, innovative and creative, with concrete support and a schedule for your ambitions outlined

Quality of the financing strategy

  • the costs for both development and production should be evaluated realistically 
  • it should outline a realistic finance plan, making allowances for alternative options
  • of core importance is the project's feasibility and viability
  • evidence the involvement of international partners and consider a range of revenue streams

Impact of the slate and innovation potential

  • present a strong and distinctive line up of projects, each with their own creative vision and narrative
  • demonstrate your ability as a company to adapt to the changing audiovisual landscape
  • evidence a focus on innovation, either through working with emerging talent, or across new genres, platforms, business models etc.
  • demonstrate clearly how these projects benefit the European film industry

Presentation of the applicant company

  • the company should exhibit a strong presence on the international market, with previous experience in co-productions and the capacity to attract distinctive talent
  • detail the relevant credits of the team and their importance to achieving the project's goals, particularly on films with a similar budget range and genre
  • illuminate the company's familiarity with independent film financing, and demonstrate established relationships with major financing and distribution partners

Some other points to note

  • We've compiled a list of resources to help guide you through what's required in terms of eligibility and the application process
  • Be positive when describing your company and your projects - sell your company, team talents, awards, achievements!
  • Write clearly. Be specific, detailed and consistent, drawing up alternative plans and scenarios for financing and distribution
  • The cut off for applications is 11am UK time on the day of the deadline - the submission takes time so don't leave it to the last minute!

Images courtesy of Dog Ears, Spring Films and Number 9 Films, all of whom received Slate funding for their animation, documentary and fiction projects.