Renewing EU partnerships and co-production funding

As outlined in the Animation UK Manifesto, the UK animation sector was once a clear beneficiary of European investment through Creative Europe/Media Funds, with networks to support co-production partnerships and opportunities to pitch projects to global commissioners and buyers.

These opportunities no longer exist, and the animation sector now relies on alternative sources, like the much welcomed, but tiny UK Global Screen Fund. However, these funds neither match previous levels, nor promote commercially viable content, resulting in our stake in co-productions being minority rights holders.

Public funds are currently geared toward subsidy, not commercial success and levels of funding need to be more adequate for securing co-production majority rights. Animation UK’s proposed strategy is to review the focus for UK film funding and increase the UK Global Screen Funds, which should be undertaken to reflect the opportunities of IP development leverage public investment to enable UK production companies to secure majority co-production
rights and convert this investment into long-term revenue and business growth. By investing in and preserving IP, the ripple effect will extend beyond pure sectoral growth; it will rejuvenate production companies across the UK, spur job creation nationwide, and bolster the broader film and TV sectors. We strongly advocate for re-affiliation with Creative
Europe/Media as an associate member to access partnership funding and in parallel increase UK Global Screen Funding overall to leverage co-production opportunities.

The return on investment would be that between 2014 and 2019, the UK received £100m investment in film and animation from the EU programmes. We should invest to unlock funds, networks, and commissions.