The Lagos filmLAB is a project funded by the British Council and the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF), in collaboration with delivery partners Biola Alabi Media and Creative England.
The project is designed to address issues affecting the film industry in Nigeria, such as challenges around financing, infrastructure and capacity building, to improve the quality of output and revenue.
Open to all aspiring filmmakers in Lagos state, Lagos filmLAB aims to discover and support emerging talents towards the development and production of market-ready, low-budget, high quality feature films.
This project will discover and support 12 teams of emerging film talent in August/September 2019, through an intensive residential programme facilitated by experienced film executives and professional writers. Filmmaking teams will be guided through the development and production phases of filmmaking with dedicated support.
They will also enjoy access to networking and mentoring opportunities with established industry professionals. Participants will be educated on topics such as script development, production, sales, marketing and distribution, and financing.
The initiative is designed to improve the creative and commercial skills of each filmmaking team member, thereby positively impacting the overall film making industry in Lagos State.
Alongside the 12 teams of aspiring filmmakers who will be selected for the Lagos filmlLAB programme through an interview and shortlisting process, other aspiring and professional filmmakers will also enjoy opportunities to improve their skills with a series of seminars and open sessions with industry experts from the UK and Nigeria.
These efforts are aimed at the development of local capacity to use similar models to strengthen film making approaches and enhance commercial viability of film projects.
The seminar topics have been carefully selected and developed to proffer solutions to the challenges identified in the ‘2017 PWC Spotlight’ on ‘The Nigerian Film Industry’ which highlighted financing, infrastructure, capacity, copyright infringements and piracy, weak distribution and marketing channels and taxation as some of the key existing challenges limiting the growth of the Nigerian Film Industry (Nollywood).
The Lagos filmLAB It is jointly funded by the British Council and Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) in collaboration with delivery partners – Biola Alabi Media and Creative England. The delivery partners will provide relevant expertise to the pilot programme. They will also support a cohort of emerging filmmakers to develop new feature films and give them distribution and marketing planning insights to enhance their prospects.
Ojoma Ochai, Director Programmes British Council in her statement said
“In line with our new Creative Economy development strategy, we are shifting our focus to more robust, longer-term interventions that support potential and emerging entrepreneurs and sector professionals not just with skills but also with access to networks, finance and markets that can really make a difference to the quality of their outputs and their livelihoods.
Lagos filmLAB builds on the Nigeria Creative Enterprise Programme (NICE), a business incubation programme for creative entrepreneurs which we launched in Lagos in early 2019 and which we will roll out in Imo, Kano and Abuja in the next 12 months. Through Lagos filmLAB and NICE, we are keen to work with UK and local partners to leverage their existing capacities and to stimulate more UK / Nigeria collaboration as well as more sustainable, institutionally led development in the Nigerian Creative Economy.”
Also commenting Teju Abisoye, Acting Executive Secretary, the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF), said,
“As a partner for the maiden edition of this Creative Sector initiative, we are convinced this collaboration further defines our commitment to job creation through relevant and appropriate skills that support the Creative Sector in Lagos State and in particular film production.
The LSETF Employability Support Project will be working with the Partners to ensure that the Curriculum is updated and relevant for all the current trainings that can directly benefit from this intervention. Finally, we expect that a new tribe of worldclass filmmakers would emerge to further contribute to the depth of quality and growth of the Creative Industry in Lagos State.”
Leading film maker, CEO of Biola Alabi Media and Local delivery partner of Lagos filmLab, Mrs. Biola Alabi, enthused over the partnership, heralding it as a first of its kind that would introduce a new cadre of filmmakers in Nollywood and propel the overall terrain of Nigerian filmmaking towards explosive growth.
Paul Ashton, Head of Film from Creative England said. “Our approach to film development endeavours to foster and facilitate the highest quality work from exciting, distinctive storytellers which has the potential to break out and reach an audience. The ‘lab’ format offers an intense and intensive experience, where quality and ambition are the beginning and end points, and where filmmaking teams develop the skills and relationships that will sustain their career.”
Registration will commence from the 22 August to the 18 September 2019 and participants are expected to register for the project on www.britishcouncil.org.ng/programmes/arts/lagos-filmlab-open-call
The Lagos filmLAB is an evolution of the original development-to-production initiative iFeatures, which was run by Creative England and funded by the British Film Institute (BFI), BBC Films and ScreenSkills.
About the British Council
The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We create friendly knowledge and understanding between the people of the UK and other countries. Using the UK’s cultural resources, we make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust.
We work with over 100 countries across the world in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Each year we directly reach over 65 million people and more than 660 million people via broadcasts and publications.
Founded in 1934, we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. Most of our income is raised delivering a range of projects and contracts in English teaching and examinations, education and development contracts and from partnerships with public and private organisations. Fifteen percent of our funding is received from the UK government. britishcouncil.org
About Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF)
Established in 2016, LSETF’s vision is to create employment and entrepreneurship opportunities to reduce unemployment in Lagos State. LSETF focuses on promoting entrepreneurship by improving access to finance, strengthening the institutional capacity of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), formulating policies and actively intervening to improve the business environment. The Fund also trains and places unemployed Lagos residents in jobs, while also driving innovation within the Lagos ecosystem.
Learn more at https://lsetf.ng. Communications contact: Abosede Alimi, firstname.lastname@example.org
About Creative England:
Creative England invests in and supports creative ideas, talent and businesses in film, TV, games and digital media. We aim to grow the brightest, the best, and those with the most promise so that individuals and businesses can achieve their full creative and commercial potential. We help identify future opportunities to grow the economy and generate jobs.
Creative England films have made a big impact in a short time. Through the iFeatures programme we have backed outstanding talent, including BIFA/EFA winner and BAFTA nominee Lady Macbeth, BAFTA Scotland winner The Levelling, BIFA/BAFTA nominee Apostasy and BIFA winner The Goob.
Through our National Lottery supported Production Fund we have backed numerous successful releases, including BAFTA Scotland/Michael Powell winning Netflix Original Calibre, BIFA/Sundance/Berlin winner God’s Own Country, Academy Award/BAFTA nominee 45 Years, BIFA winner and BAFTA nominee Notes on Blindness, BIFA/Tribeca winner Adult Life Skills, BIFA winner Orion, BAFTA/BIFA nominee Kingdom of Us and BIFA nominee Irene’s Ghost. Using European Regional Development Fund finance via the West Midlands Production Fund, we backed BIFA winner and BAFTA nominee The Girl with All the Gifts and BAFTA/BIFA nominee Jawbone.
We have supported a wide variety of films through National Lottery funded talent programmes, including Animals, Days of the Bagnold Summer, The Last Tree, Only You, Westwood, The Ritual, Possum, Pin Cushion and England is Mine via the Emerging Fund, and over one hundred short films, including BIFA winner The Big Day and BAFTA nominee Emotional Fusebox.
Our Sky partnership shortFLIX saw five new filmmakers premiere their shorts on Sky Arts.
About Biola Alabi Media:
A fast-growing media company dedicated to telling authentic African stories to the world. Our mission is to develop content that will ignite your curiosity no matter who you are or where you are on the globe. We create stories that not only connect, resonate and entertain Africans but also audiences around the world via:
Films: Leveraging the best technology and industry talents to tell African stories that reflect the richness our culture. With films like Banana Island Ghost (B.I.G) and ‘Lara & The Beat’, giving credence to our expertise in conceiving, producing, shooting and editing award-winning films.
Television: First TV show, Bukas & Joints, is the most watched TV food show across the country. Producers of highly engaging and informative content suitable for terrestrial television, cable television, satellite television and internet television.
Digital: Helping brands create meaningful content, engagement and experiences for their customers and target audience. We also leverage customer data to create and improve client’s digital marketing strategy.
Consultation: Extensive knowledge and cross-sector expertise in media, information and entertainment industries. We advise a wide range of brands and companies on areas such as strategy, marketing, digital transformation and strategy, advanced analytics and more.