BFI and The Film and TV Charity have established an emergency fund to support U.K. freelancers impacted by COVID-19.
The fund was established through a £1 million donation from Netflix and officially opened on April 8 to support members of the U.K.'s creative film and TV community.
It quickly grew to £2.5 million ($3.1 million USD) with additional donations from BFI, BBC Studios, BBC Content, WarnerMedia, and private donors. Today, Comcast-owned broadcast network Sky donated £500,000 ($624,000 USD) as well.
"At this incredibly difficult time, it’s important that we do all we can to support our most needy freelance colleagues," said Gary Davey, CEO of Sky Studios, "and we hope that this donation will help to alleviate some of the immediate financial challenges many of them are facing over the coming weeks and months."
Sky Group seems to be dedicated to supporting filmmakers during this time; Chief Executive, Jeremy Darroch, has pledged to donate 100% of his salary to COVID-19-related charities until the crisis is over.
The fund will provide one-off grants from £500 (about $600 USD) to £2,500 (about $3,100 USD) to active employees in film, TV, and cinema facing financial hardship during the global pandemic.
According to the application site, workers who have been employed in multiple production roles are eligible, but they must show that they've worked 40 days in a behind-the-camera position from Oct. 1, 2019, to March 30, 2020. Employees of film festivals are eligible as well.
Affected U.K. workers can apply through The Film and TV Charity's website. Applications are due by April 22, 2020, at 6 p.m.
Check out our continuing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic for other resources available to filmmakers at this time.