Directors UK and Creative Skillset’s High-End TV Council has announced that the High-End TV Drama Directors Programme will be running again, for another year.
The further investment from Creative Skillset’s High-End TV Levy Fund will allow Directors UK to continue the programme for aspiring high-end TV directors. The aim of the programme is to “raise the bar of excellence among the industry’s rising talent by providing directors with the creative, editorial and technical knowledge they need to become the next generation of high-end drama directors, whilst developing and diversifying directing talent in the UK.”
This year’s programme will place five directors in five high-end drama productions for up to 12 weeks. The paid placement will give the directors access to all aspects of a production, under the leadership of a mentor director.  They will be embedded in every aspect of the show, from pre-production to postproduction, including prep, story-boarding, script read-through and shooting, all the way to the final edit, with the opportunity to direct 2nd unit and gain an on-screen credit.
The scheme has placed up and coming directors on productions including BBC Studios’ Silent Witness, World Productions’ Bodyguard, Carnival Films’ Jamestown, Kudos’ The Tunnel: Vengeance, Lookout Point’s Press, Neal Street Productions’ Call The Midwife, and Tiger Aspect/Sky’s Curfew.  This year, new partners working with the High End TV Drama Directors Programme include Sid Gentle Films Ltd (The Durrells & Killing Eve).
Applications are now open for this year’s 2018/19 programme. The deadline for applications is Monday 16th July 2018. The scheme is open to all qualifying directors. Applications from BAME and women directors are encouraged.
Andrea Corbett, Skills and Career Development Manager at Directors UK said: “The long term aim of the High-End TV Drama Directors Programme is to equip directors with the skills and confidence they need to become future directors to shape the high-end drama genre. Working closely with key organisation and individuals within the sector is of critical importance to achieve this. From the success of our previous programmes, we know that more immersive and hands-on experience works, by giving a placement director confidence utilising new skills developed and reassurance in the skills they already have, whilst providing them with a supportive environment.”
Kaye Elliott, Director of High End Television at Creative Skillset said:  “Creative Skillset’s High-end TV Council is delighted to be supporting Directors UK deliver their director placement programme again this year, which will provide support, development and promotion for fresh UK directing talent for the high-end TV industry. We look forward to seeing the continued success of this important programme over the year.”
Sally Woodward Gentle, CEO of Sid Gentle Films Ltd said: “Sid Gentle is thrilled to be coming on board the Directors Programme this year.  The work done by Directors UK and the High-End TV Levy is invaluable in supporting emerging talent within the industry.  We can’t wait to be a bigger part of their wonderful work.”

Jon Creamer

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