Photo: Silver Light by Floriana/iStock
Photo: Silver Light by Floriana/iStock


15 March 2016

We’re pleased to announce that Guiding Lights – the UK’s most prestigious film mentoring scheme – is now open for submissions.

Guiding Lights 7 mentees
Guiding Lights 7 mentees

Launched in 2006, Guiding Lights supports upcoming filmmakers and professionals through high-level mentoring, complemented by a range of training and networking activities.

For its eighth edition, we are looking for a new group of writers, producers and directors to take part in the scheme, and are again partnering with Film Hub South East – part of the BFI Film Audience Network – to support the participation of one exhibition professional from the South East (Berkshire, East Sussex, Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Kent, Oxfordshire, Surrey and West Sussex). We are also delighted to be working again with Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board (IFB) through Screen Training Ireland, to support the participation of two Ireland-based candidates – one female director, and one female writer.

Since its launch, Guiding Lights has worked with a host of exceptionally talented mentees, many of whom have been nominated for or won BAFTAs, BIFAs, Emmys and Oscars, amongst other leading industry awards. Notably amongst this year’s BAFTA nominees, A Syrian Love Story, the feature documentary produced by former mentee Elhum Shakerifar, is in competition for Outstanding Debut, while Samuel-613, written and directed by current mentee Billy Lumby (pictured above, centre), has received a British Short Film nomination. Read more about the BAFTA successes of these and other Guiding Lights participants.

On the scheme, each mentee is matched with a leading film industry professional who provides advice and guidance over a 9-month period. The current edition of the scheme saw, amongst others, Ben Wheatley (Sightseers, High Rise), Andrew Macdonald (Trainspotting, The Last King of Scotland) and Matt Charman (Suite Francaise, Bridge of Spies) join an illustrious list of former mentors, including Danny Boyle, Barbara Broccoli, Hossein Amini, Sam Mendes, Joanna Hogg, Alex Garland, Abi Morgan, Nira Park and Kenneth Branagh. Read more about our previous Guiding Lights Mentors and Mentees.

Before you Apply for Guiding Lights 8, please ensure that you have read the Guidelines and FAQs. The deadline for applications is 5pm, Monday 14 March 2016.

Find out more about the Guiding Lights mentoring scheme.

Guiding Lights is supported by Creative Skillset’s Film Skills Fund, which is funded by the BFI with National Lottery funds, through the Skills Investment Fund.



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