Young FAN

@ Rocks

A project designed to support the next generation of young film curators and film enthusiasts across the UK.

During it’s pilot year, between May 2016 and March 2017, the Young Programmers Network explored activity undertaken to date, looking at gaps and opportunities and uncovered 38 active groups across the country. You can find survey results within our Film Hub Wales Youth Festivals Report, which were commissioned alongside our Wales report.

The network aims are to map, link and network young programmers across the UK, providing diverse opportunities for new talent in the industry along with access to quality British independent and international film for young audiences. Young people can learn skills such as programming, project management and event delivery, as well as attending UK-wide events such as ICO Screening Days and learning how to video blog at Flatpack Film Festival, Birmingham. See some of the recent attendees of My Flatpack and their video blogs here.

There are five venues in Wales offering young programmer initiatives:

  • Rhyl Little TheatreWicked International Youth Film Festival teamed up with Rhyl Little Theatre to offer workshops for young people to develop specialised film programmes, alongside other training opportunities and visits to other cinemas. You can view a video created by Wicked Wales Young Programmers, when they interviewed attendees to WNO’s live orchestra screening of ‘The Wizard Of Oz’ here.
  • CellB, Blaenau Ffestiniog
    CellB work with young people from the local area to develop youth-led cinema events. Participants are taught progamming skills, leading to a final day screening of films such as “Young Offenders”.
  • Galeri, CaernarfonGaleri’s Young Programmers scheme was introduced as part of their SBARC initiaive, also getting young people involved in the development of the venue’s second cinema screen. The sessions include training on budgeting, timelines, marketing and programming.
  • Chapter, Cardiff
    Chapter worked with local schools in Ely and Splott to deliver eight consecutive weekly sessions, with a final all day event. Over the weeks, students learned how to conceive an event, design a budget and deliver an immersive cinema experience to the public.
  • Torch, Milford Haven
    The Torch are creating a network of young programmers who will learn how to programme, market and design film at The Torch, with the aim of setting up a young film club.

The Young Programmers Network also opens up opportunities for other experienced young people, such as graduates of the Zoom Youth Film Council and BFI Film Academies, via organisations such as Valleys Kids.

About the Young FAN Consultants:

The FAN Young Consultants group ran between 2018-2023. A 9 strong group of under 30 year olds working in Film Exhibition across the UK they were brought together to represent and provide an authentic youth voice for the Network. Working with Film Hub London’s Young Audience lead Moira McVean, the group recommended new release films that they believed would resonate particularly well with their peers and young people aged 16-30.

These films and marketing/event suggestions from the group were shared in marketing packs and via the BFI FAN regional newsletters.

The group also produced a monthly newsletter ‘no content available’ in which they shared what they were watching, thinking about following, which you can read here.

Further resources:

  • If you are thinking of setting up a Young Programmer group, take a look at the Young FAN Toolkit.
  • Whether you’re an experienced BFI FAN exhibitor running a Young Programmers group, already have a thriving screening or activity programme aimed at developing young audiences or entirely new to working with this age group or indeed are in this age group you can find more support and resources here.
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