A host of broadcasters from the Celtic regions have joined forces to set up an exciting new media production fund to develop new drama, animation and factual programmes in the Celtic languages.
The ‘Celtic International Fund’ will run an annual joint-commissioning round between the indigenous Celtic language television broadcasters and funders of Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Northern Ireland.
It has been set up by BBC ALBA (with funding from MG ALBA), S4C, TG4 and Northern Ireland Screen’s Irish Language Broadcast Fund (ILBF).
The aim of the Celtic International Fund is to promote co-development and then co-production through Scottish Gaelic, Welsh and Irish, and to encourage a broader European and worldwide internationalisation of productions which are originally conceived in those Celtic languages.
The Celtic International Fund will provide film-makers with an opportunity to co-develop and co-produce distinctive, ambitious works to enrich primetime programme schedules, to have a national impact with audiences in the territories of Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Northern Ireland and seek to reach audiences worldwide.
The initial call-out encompasses three genres – Factual, Drama and Animation. All successful projects will undergo a development phase where funding will be provided to both develop ideas and the co-production framework, which must have a production element in Scotland, Wales and either Ireland, or Northern Ireland.
The Celtic International Fund will be administered by a joint commissioning team drawn from the Celtic language broadcasters and funders who are partners in the scheme.
Iseabail Mactaggart, MG ALBA Director of Strategy and Development said “This is an important move which will strengthen the strategic approach to co-production for BBC ALBA – an area in which MG ALBA initiatives have already created substantial gains for BBC ALBA audiences and increased opportunities for our suppliers. By partnering with other Celtic broadcasters, we will also be able to take advantage of further European and worldwide opportunities. We expect this initiative to enable us to deliver higher quality programming by pooling resources on development and production. The prospect of doing that in areas such as Factual, Drama and Animation is hugely exciting. BBC ALBA operates in an increasingly competitive world. Working together with Celtic broadcasters and developing new production models will create more opportunities for rich, distinctive programming and will further increase the economic benefits from investment in Gaelic broadcasting.”