BFI Film Academy Plymouth

Are you 16-19? Passionate about film? Want a career in the film industry? Then the BFI Film Academy — UK Network Programme is for you.

This exciting programme offers hands-on filmmaking courses, aimed at developing your knowledge and skills and encouraging your special interests.

On a cobble stoned street in Plymouth, two students look through the lens of a professional camera aimed at a girl with a black film clapper ready to shoot the scene.

Behind the scenes of BFI Film Academy Plymouth

"Practical skills are our absolute priority, alongside helping our students to develop the correct mindset for the industry; focusing on communication, teamwork, creative thinking and time management. One of our alumni worked on Marvel's 'Black Widow' (starring Scarlett Johansson) at the age of just 18, these kinds of opportunities are available only to BFI Film Academy students across the country. There's nothing else like it."
Billy Abbot, Tutor

There are 40 different courses running between September and March across the UK so wherever you live — be it Birmingham or Belfast, Dundee or Durham — you will have the opportunity to gain the essential skills to enter the film industry.

No prior experience is required, which is ideal for young people who have an interest in film but haven’t yet had an opportunity to take that interest further.

Courses provide at least 40 hours of industry-standard training through regular evenings and/or weekend classes. Each one offers a combination of workshops, practical skills lessons and lectures.

You will also get masterclasses by key industry figures, receive personalised careers advice and work towards making a final film on a team. As a graduate of the BFI Film Academy, you will become part of the growing alumni network and have access to year-round events such as BAFTA career surgeries.

Take a look at some of the great short films made by previous participants at the BFI Film Academy on YouTube.

“The best parts were the industry talks by guest speakers and the hands-on opportunities to learn through making a short film...Ultimately it was the BFI Film Academy Plymouth that gave me the connections and resources to work on an upcoming blockbuster film [Marvel's Black Widow]. In fact, since becoming a graduate of the BFI I’ve been inundated with options for ways to break into the film industry.”
Joshua Hard, BFI Film Academy Student

The success of the BFI Film Academy Plymouth for young people across the South West has been overwhelming, with 100% of participating students graduating from the programme with their NCFE Level 2 Preparing to Work in the Film Industry qualification. All BFI graduates gain access to a national network of support, designed to help them work towards, and transition into, roles within the film industry.

Sound good? At a course cost of just £25, we think so too!

If you are unable to pay the full course fee, don’t let this discourage you from applying. Contact BFI Academy Project Manager, Lucy Leake Bursaries for travel and childcare may be available if you require assistance with these costs.

Please note that if you have previously been on a BFI Film Academy residential course or are enrolled in University during the 2020/21 academic year, you are not eligible to apply.

The NCFE ‘Preparing to Work in the Film Industry’ accreditation for participants will be offered by course providers as part of the UK Network Programme courses.

Have a question about the course? Contact Lucy Leake at