Crew and talent career progression schemes

Image of Halle Bailey in The Little Mermaid
Image: © 2023 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved

ScreenSkills invests in the development of all professionals who are in all careers stages, informed by findings of the ScreenSkills Skills Forecasting Service

Schemes supported by the Film Skills Fund

Film Forward

Film Forward is designed to create change in the UK film industry by supporting experienced minority ethnic professionals to advance into more senior roles.

The programme matches film professionals who have at least five years’ experience in a variety of below-the-line roles with paid placement opportunities. Additional support for Film Forward candidates includes professional development coaching and access to a bursary of up to £3,000 to help with expenses needed to enable career progress. 

Short courses

ScreenSkills invests in short courses to support professionals to develop in their careers. Investment is informed by findings of the ScreenSkills Skills Forecasting Service in consultation with expert Industry advisory groups.

In 2022/23 we are investing in training including production accountancy, production management, art department, VFX, camera department, transferers in hair and make-up and well as the fast-immerging virtual production technologies.

We are also investing in virtual production training for professionals of all levels. Visit to find out more about the training that we currently run.

Courses we have funded in the last three years include:

  • First Aid for Film Freelancers (delivered by Mission Accomplished): sessions covering learning skills on leadership, financial, management, career development and gaining new clients for freelancers.
  • Unconscious bias training (BIFA): encompassing many different workshops and sessions about how to deal with unconscious bias in the film workplace.
  • Online leadership sessions (TRC Media): sessions on how to learn to lead yourself, bearing in mind boundaries, personal development and mental health.
  • Movie Magic scheduling and budgeting (Sgil Cymru): practical course on how to work with the different Movie Magic software.
  • Women future leaders in distribution and exhibition (Birds' Eye View): a leadership training programme for women, and those who identify as women, with distribution experience and who have the ambition to run or own a distribution business or operate at a higher executive level.
  • Mindset (Ffilm Cymru Wales): training developed to initiate a conversation around mental health barriers in the hope that participating screenwriters will feel empowered and encouraged to progress despite these challenges and inspire others to do the same.
  • Data-Driven Marketing (Independent Cinema Office): A professional network of peers specialising in digital marketing for film exhibition to share industry understanding.
  • Making it Possible (Raising Films): one-day personal development course with follow-up online support to help experienced professionals navigate their way back into the industry after a caring break or help those who have already returned but feel their career has stagnated.
  • Location manager (Sgil Cymru): trainees on this scheme learned about the various elements of location management, including scouting, paperwork and permissions, working alongside other departments within the crew and more.
  • Film On (104 Films): 12 disabled course participants were trained to become camera trainees/assistants.
  • Unreal bootcamp for VFX professionals (Escape Studios): five days of lectures and masterclasses introduction Unreal Engine software to those already working in visual effects.
  • How to succeed as a supervising art director (Talking Point): Training to support art directors as they step up to this more senior role
  • Step up to production accountancy (PGGB): A stepping up programme to support people in junior accountancy roles who are ready to make a move up.

Visit the ScreenSkills training and opportunity directory to find out more about the training that we currently run.

What our supporters say

Amy Smith, head of talent at Framestore, says: “It’s so important to provide the right opportunities to attract and retain an inclusive workforce across all parts of the industry including post and VFX and as a Film Skills Council member, I really value ScreenSkills’ work on this.”

Nicole Young, costume supervisor (Annihilation; Jurassic World; Fallen Kingdom), says: “I fully support the work that ScreenSkills does to support crew in craft and tech and ensure we maintain the UK’s reputation for having a brilliant skilled workforce that makes this a great place to make films.”

Phil Clapp, chief executive of the UK Cinema Association and Film Skills Council deputy chair, says: “UK cinemas entertain audiences from all backgrounds and so it is vital that we ensure that the behind-the-camera talent reflects that same diversity. The work of the Film Skills Council is vital in this regard. I am particularly grateful for ScreenSkills’ online coronavirus training which supported cinema staff in returning safely to work.”

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