Former Amazon Studios Europe boss, Georgia Brown is to chair the Skills Task Force, the industry-led group addressing critical skilled labour shortages within the UK’s production screen sectors.
The Task Force will comprise senior representatives from all the major broadcasters, studios and streamers, as well as organisations including ScreenSkills, PACT and national screen agencies, and has been put together by the BFI in response to the BFI Skills Review commissioned by the DCMS.
The Task Force will build on the BFI Skills Review and will deliver a plan of action to grow, train and retain the largely freelance screen sector workforce, while addressing other top line recommendations from the Review.
Intrinsic to the work is a “significant improvement in equity, diversity and inclusion, tackling mental health and retention issues, as well as having a UK-wide perspective.”
The taskforce will have three aims – industry training and investment; improving access to the Apprenticeship Levy; and pathways to industry from further and higher education. The resulting outputs will “assign clear responsibility for delivery of each element to relevant parts of the industry, and where appropriate, the Task Force will make recommendations to HM Government.”
Ben Roberts, BFI CEO, said: “In order to implement the step change needed to address the skills gap and ensure our workforce can meet the demands of our growing industry, the Skills Review made it very clear that an industry-led response was fundamental. We are therefore really pleased with the commitment and dedication of these key industry players, and with an executive of Georgia’s calibre and experience at the helm, we believe industry working with key partners such as ScreenSkills, can come together to drive this work forward and help ensure sustainable change.”
Georgia Brown, Chair of the UK Production Skills Task Force for the Screen Sector, said: “The UK has an important and well-earned reputation for being the centre of creative excellence, however if we want to accelerate growth and build a sustainable industry, we must accelerate change by creating a robust framework to develop, support, train and ignite the next generation of talent. This Task Force will build on and complement the essential strategic work already undertaken by industry, ScreenSkills, the BFI and public bodies across the UK and it’s an honour to work collaboratively with colleagues from across the industry to lead this important work.”
Creative Industries Minister Julia Lopez said: “Our booming film and TV industries are creating thousands of jobs across the country but we must make sure we have a skilled workforce ready to seize these fantastic opportunities. We supported the BFI’s Review to help create a talent pipeline, boost economic growth and create inspiring new content to be enjoyed by audiences at home and abroad.”
Seetha Kumar, ScreenSkills CEO, said: “The skills challenge facing the screen industry is urgent. ScreenSkills is leading the way by providing strategic industry leadership to rise to this challenge and in making the case for a unified approach to skills. Working across the industry, ScreenSkills is creating opportunities for new entrants alongside life-long training and support. With the pressure on skills, and global competition for production talent, an aligned approach is the only solution so that the sector can continue to make a significant contribution to the UK’s economic growth and make great UK content that the audience love and trust.”
Members of the UK Production Skills Task Force for the Screen Sectors:
- Animation UK
- Apple TV+
- British Film Commission
- COBA (the Association for Commercial Broadcasters and On-Demand Services)
- Creative Wales
- HETV Skills Council
- MPA (Motion Picture Association)
- Northern Ireland Screen
- The Production Guild of Great Britain
- Screen Scotland
- UK Screen Alliance
- Warner Bros. Discovery
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