Flatpack Festival
Film for all the senses

Flatpack 2024 Open Call

Sam Groves
Wednesday 1st November, 2023 Posted by Sam Groves

Following numerous successful Open Call programmes over the last few years, we’re once again inviting applications from curators and programmers from underrepresented groups for Flatpack 2024 (10-19 May).

Project proposals can include films, performances, talks, workshops etc., to take place at the next Flatpack Festival. While there's no set theme, we want to celebrate a range of different voices and perspectives at Flatpack 2024, shining a light on artists, filmmakers, and subjects that are underrepresented on and off screen.

Who is this open call for?

The callout is open to anyone from a background that is underrepresented in the film and cultural sector (for example you are from a community that experiences racism, you are neurodiverse, you are from the LGBTQIA+ community, you did not go to university, you had free school meals as a child or you are a disabled person). There is currently a lack of diversity within film exhibition, and we’re committed to change by taking steps towards a more inclusive, interesting, and representative cultural sector.

As we did last year, we would like to specifically address the underrepresentation of Black curators and exhibitors in the film and cultural sector. Two projects will be selected for Flatpack 2024, one of which is open only to Black curators, exhibitors, artists and creatives.

All applicants must be based in the UK.

What are we looking for?

We're looking to fund two projects - they could be short film programmes, live/expanded cinema performances, conversational events, audiovisual interventions, unseen documentaries, archive finds, retrospectives, family screenings - whatever you like - surprise us!

We would expect applicants to demonstrate some previous experience and/or knowledge of programming and curating, and all projects must be viable. By this we mean that some prior research must have been done into the availability of personnel/films, and the project needs to be deliverable on a relatively small budget. Whilst the budget isn’t set in stone, we expect projects to cost somewhere between £200 - £750, but please budget your project realistically.

We’re particularly interested in projects that present films in playful and unusual ways. It is also important that you state who your intended audience is and ways in which you think they can be reached. Successul projects will receive marketing support from Flatpack's Marketing Manager.

Are there any themes that you need to adhere to?

Our festival takes an eclectic approach to programming and as a result we tend not to be driven too heavily by themes, however there are some that are emerging for next year, and they include:

  • Greener living, sustainable transport, recycling, climate change;
  • AI and creativity;
  • The collision of art and comedy.

Your proposal doesn’t need to fall within these categories, but may be used for inspiration.

What money is involved?

Two proposals will be taken forward to be presented at the 18th Flatpack Festival in Birmingham (10-19 May 2024), with each project given a budget of £1,000 to cover curation time. Technicals, rights, venues, and marketing will be covered separately.

How do I apply?

Download and fill out this short application form (Word Doc) along with an equal opportunity form by Sunday 7 January 2024. We will also accept video presentations or voice memos if you prefer to send your proposal that way, and we're happy to chat if you want to discuss your idea or find out more: submissions@flatpackfestival.org.uk

For more information on Flatpack, download this Word Doc: Flatpack Background Information

How are the applications assessed?

The applications will be assessed by the Flatpack team and a former successful open call grantee. The applications will be assessed on ambition, originality, feasibility, relevance, and audience-appeal of the projects.

We will let all applicants know the outcome by Monday 15 January 2024.

Whilst we invite potential applicants to get in touch with us with any questions regarding their project proposal or the application process, we are unfortunately unable to offer feedback to unsuccessful applicants.

What events have been selected previously?

Ampe: Leap into the Sky, Black Girl - three short films with a live demonstration of the game Ampe by the Ghana Union Greater Birmingham Queer Living: Wanna Get in my Drawers? - an immersive look at Queer living through an installation in Birmingham’s Rotunda building The Grunwick Strike: The Year of the Beaver - a screening of documentary The Grunwick Strike followed by Q&A, and production of publication A Time to Rebel - a screening of two films about South Asian identity in the UK, followed by a discussion, and ‘daytimer’
AIDS on Film - two documentaries exploring the AIDS epidemic followed by discussions with director Peter Friedman and activist Peter Tatchell
Here I Come - a screening of Season 1 of Russian queer web-series Here I Come with satelite Q&A with director Andrey Fenøčka
After Life - a screening of Hirokazu Koreeda’s 1988 film After Life, with commissioned essay written by writer Polly Barton, and limited edition A3 Riso artwork by illustrator Joey Yu
Where the Restless Oceans Pound - three short films exploring decolonial approaches to the ocean, with prerecorded Q&As with directors

What did previous awardees say?

"Honestly, it's been a total pleasure working with the Flatpack team over the past few months on this. As I think I mentioned to some of you over the weekend, I was really put off working in film curation by some of the nastiness I'd encountered previously. With Flatpack, however, I've felt constantly supported and trusted throughout the process."

“Thank you again for such a great opportunity, it was an amazing experience.”

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