Estuary on Film – The Creative Brief

Estuary On Film

The Creative Brief

Screen South and Estuary on Film are looking for vibrant storytellers with excellent creative ideas and a potential to make compelling bold, diverse, and confident short films. We would like to enhance mainstream opportunities for a diverse range of new and emerging Filmmakers, identifying talent from underrepresented communities. As Lemn Sissay says, “Lean into your own story to find your own original perspective”.

Some will already be making films; others may not have realised their creative potential yet but with encouragement could develop their ideas and start their creative journey in a supportive and nurturing environment.

Most importantly, we would like to hear from new voices as well as more experienced filmmakers who have new and compelling ideas with visual storytelling which is exciting and memorable. All applicants must be over 18 years on date of application.

Core characteristic we’ll be looking for in our commissions:
  • Diversity – present the diversity of Estuary Community on and off screen
  • Reflecting – the ideas and themes that really matter to you and your community, however you might define it.
  • Originality – Content cannot be derivative and must be wholly owned by the filmmakers


Deadline: 17th March 2022

Budget: Up to £5k

We are looking for creative and thought-provoking ideas with fresh and innovative proposals for short films that promote the diverse talent and are made Estuary region. We welcome dynamic stories and compelling moving image helps us all see the world though different lenses. This might be through creative approaches to narrative drama, storytelling, sound-design, style, image and structure. Tonally, pieces can be comedic, serious, absurd, challenging, provocative. They can be animation, live action, mixed media, spoken work, experimental… we are open to your thoughts on this.

We envisage most films being around 5 minutes long, but if your idea warrants a longer film, we are open to discussing this with you, so long as it remains within the fair-trade budget guidelines.  Shortlisted applicants will be given support and guidance to develop their projects and advice on presenting to an inclusive industry panel.

Applications will be shortlisted to receive a development day, and will be invited to resubmit their idea. To be shortlisted does not guarantee that you will move on to the commissioning stage.

Deadline: 17th March 2022, 17:00

Development Day: 30th March (Location TBC)

Resubmission Deadline: 19th April Midday

Interview Panels: 28th April (Location TBC)

Notify Successful Applicants: 3rd May

The 4 selected filmmakers will be supported at every stage of the production process by industry professionals, encouraging ambition and excellence across all areas of activity.

Each commissioned Artist will receive a budget; these are variable depending on the scale and ambition of the work but are up to £5K

Your Producer will work with Screen South to assign you a professional mentor who will support you to produce your work.

From signing the Artist Agreement, you will have 5 months in production which includes post-production.

Screen South and Esturay on Film will support the selected filmmakers with their distribution plans and work with Estuary based festivals and cinemas to seek high profile promotion opportunities for the screening and exhibition of the films.

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