Slate Development Funding - Advice and Tips for your Application!
11 January 2019

Slate Development Funding - Advice and Tips for your Application!

We had a full house for our first seminar of 2019 in Irish Film Institute on MEDIA Slate Funding! If you missed it, here is a brief recap including some of the top tips from our speakers.

  • A Slate Funding application must contain a slate of at least 3 and a maximum of 5 projects. The total amount of support that can be allocated under Slate Funding is between €70,000 and €200,000.
  • Short Film (max 20 mins) providing support to emerging talent can be included in the Slate as an additional project – ie a Slate of 3-5 projects plus one short film. 
  • Eligibility: independent European production companies with an international track record who have recently produced an internationally distributed project.
  • Projects can include Feature filmsanimation and creative documentaries (min. length of 60 mins)
 intended for theatrical release; TV / digital platform series or one-off; Drama (min. length 90 mins)
; Animation (min. length 24 mins); Creative documentaries (min. length 50 mins). 

Practical tips on writing your application | Orla Clancy and Eibhlín Ní Mhunghaile, CEDI MEDIA. 

  • Give yourself lots of time to prepare and write your applications.
  • Read it over several times and get someone else to read it too.
  • Be positive when describing your company and your projects - sell your company, team talents, awards, achievements!
  • Write clearly. Be consistent. Spellcheck!
  • Be specific when describing your projects.
  • Be consistent with your budget. 
  • Show that you have alternative plans for your financial and distribution strategies.

Company Presentation & Business Strategies | Bernie Cullinane, Pragma Advisory and Screen Leaders.

  • Have a clear vision of your company in terms of goals and what you want to achieve.
  • Spend time with your team writing a clear, concise company description. 
  • If you don't have one, develop a 5 year company strategy.
  • Identify the scope of the company - e.g. We are / we are not; we want to be known for...
  • Make sure you hire the best talent!
  • Identify the key tasks that need to be done to achieve your goals.
  • Sign up to the MEDIA supported Screen Leaders company development programme!

Skills Development & Emerging Talent | Gareth Lee, Screen Skills Ireland  

  • Show how your company fosters talent whether it be via training, mentoring, or career progression.
  • Try to include a short film in your slate application to demonstrate how you plan to develop new talent. 
  • If you can't include a short film then show how you plan to foster talent via your company and projects.
  • Screen Skills Ireland offer Bursary Training Awards for EU and international training for your team. 
  • You can apply for funding to attend full time courses and workshops abroad or to participate in a structured work programme within international companies.  
  • Screen Skills Ireland also offer work-based learning such as traineeships, apprenticeships, shadowing and mentoring.

Marketing & Distribution | Patrick O'Neill, Wildcard Distribution

  • Do online research about other projects similiar to yours to find the right distributor or sales agents for your projects.
  • Make sure to show your distribution strategy in your application
  • Mention sales agents, distributors and any new distribution platforms you might target.
  • What is your distribution strategy for countries you are co-producing with?
  • Marketing: show your strategy is European and international. Do you have a marketing content plan?
  • What marketing tools will you use to pitch at markets and film festivals. 
  • Subscribe to Cinando to keep up with EU film industry news.
  • Cinando offers film industry contacts, profiles, films for sale, projects in development, screening schedules during the major film markets.

The deadline for Slate Development applications is 11am Wednesday 20th February, 2019. Keep an eye out in 2019 for a series of briefing sessions we will run with European Sales Agents.