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Netflix and Creative UK team up to kick off genre-based programme Breakout

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The new programme will fund new, high-quality projects developed by British filmmakers, and at least one of them will receive a £1.5 million production budget

Netflix and Creative UK team up to kick off genre-based programme Breakout
Paul Ashton, head of film and TV at Creative UK

Netflix has announced that it has teamed up with Creative UK to launch a brand-new programme called Breakout. The initiative will support the development of new debut features, with the primary criteria being that they are high-quality, genre-based and British.

“Breakout will give new, UK-based filmmakers the opportunity to take popular genres that audiences love, from sci-fi to thriller and horror, and to comedy and romance, and reinterpret them through a distinctively British lens,” Netflix disclosed. The Los Gatos-based giant revealed that the programme will be based on “the principle that daring, ambitious filmmaking can drive commercial as well as critical success, and can emerge from all backgrounds”.

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The participants will take part in six teams, each of which will receive £30,000 (circa€36,000) worth of development funding in addition to partaking in a Creative UK training programme comprising mentoring and residential lab events. Netflix executives will provide additional support and input.

At least one filmmaker will receive a greenlight from Netflix, along with a £1.5 million (€1.8 million) budget, to complete a genre film set for a global release on the streaming platform.

“We know there are so many brilliant emerging genre voices in the UK with bold, ambitious stories to tell, who lack the funding necessary to reach their audience. We’re committed, through our UK features initiative, to creating a talent pipeline for Netflix and the wider industry to elevate and develop the widest range of voices. We can’t wait to introduce exciting new UK talent to our members all around the globe,” said Hannah Perks, of Netflix UK.

Meanwhile, Paul Ashton, head of film and TV at Creative UK, stated: “Talent is everywhere, but opportunity is not, and right from our very first conversation, it was clear that Netflix shared our desire to offer career-changing opportunities to film talent in the UK. Having backed films at Creative UK which have realised their best life with Netflix, such as Calibre [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
and The Ritual [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, we know how important Breakout will be. By giving filmmakers the opportunity to advance projects across a range of genres, we’re enabling them not just to make great films for an audience, but also to lay strong foundations in their relationship with Netflix in the UK.”

The initiative is open to creative teams that haven’t yet made a feature, and are garnering industry and/or public recognition for their work. Ideally, participants should be “bold, distinctive genre storytellers” who have gained some experience in industries such as theatre, TV, video gaming, online content, commercials, graphic novels, music promos or shorts. Applicants from underrepresented groups are encouraged.

For further information, click here.

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