Plymouth College of Art partners with BFI to deliver course for young filmmakers

Budding filmmakers across Plymouth and the South West will have the chance to learn from industry-leading figures in a new intensive short course designed to provide young artists with practical skills and confidence in creating moving images, thanks to a partnership between Plymouth College of Art and the British Film Institute (BFI).

The BFI Film Academy Programme offers hands-on filmmaking courses, aimed at developing knowledge and skills for those passionate about film or looking for a career in the film industry. Videographer and Plymouth College of Art Extended Diploma in Film, Animation & Media Production lecturer Billy Abbott will take the lead in organising the Plymouth based programme, with support from Pre-Degree Associate Dean Matias Shortcook.

Aspiring creatives aged 16–19 are encouraged to apply for one of the limited spaces available on the programme, which will take place between October and December. The cost of the intensive course is just £25 per person; this covers over 50 hours of teaching time, as well as use of industry-standard equipment and essential materials.

Project manager Billy Abbott said:

“We've assembled a really exciting team of people, all of whom can't wait to have a positive influence on the lives and careers of young creatives in the South West. The students will have access to a huge range of film equipment and software for the course, as well as gaining an Award in Preparing to Work in the Film Industry.”

Aimed at those interested in pursuing a career in the film and media industry, whether as a scriptwriter, set carpenter, cinematographer or director, applicants don’t necessarily have to be currently studying film or media. All participants will receive NCFE accreditation and will also graduate from the short course as BFI alumni, allowing them access to year-round events such as BAFTA career surgeries and workshops.

Masterclasses and talks will be led by key industry figures including Oliver Stapleton BSC, famed cinematographer and co-head of the MA programme at the National Film and Television School, and lead tutor Nick Hart-Williams, former C4 Documentary Commissioning Editor. All participants will be encouraged to produce a short film during the course, using actors provided by theatre company The Actors Wheel, to be submitted to Plymouth Film Festival 2018.

A link to the application form can be found on the Plymouth College of Art website, The deadline for applications is 1 October 2017, spaces are limited to a maximum of 20. For more information, including details on the support that is available to help cover the application fee, contact Billy Abbott on

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